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reasons : one is, that I do not wish to expose ick dissented from making any effort in this those Colonels who have deserted their duty, direction, and said it would lead to a general and done so much to injure this constitutional war.” (Vol. iii. p. 177.) force ; the other is, that I nm resolved the sys
The Great Seal was put in Commission tem shall be put upon a better footing the next session of Parliament. My Lords, I am an old on the return of Lord Melbourne to office,
- older than any of your Lordships — and, for one of the chief difficulties of his former therefore, know more than any of you. In Administration had been the intense dis1756 George II. had, as I have now, what was like of the King to Lord Brougham, which called a Whig Ministry; that Ministry origin- was shared to some extent by his former ated a Militia Bill, to frame a constitutional de- colleagues. But this arrangement was fence of the kingdom. George II. had not the temporary, and the question soon arose advantages which his successors possessed. He whether Campbell, the Attorney-General, opposed the Bill; and he was seconded by per- Pepys, the Master of the Rolls, or Bickersons, in different counties, some from one mo- steth should be Chancellor. Hobhouse tive, some from another, perhaps, subserviency; energetically supported his old frienu but his Ministers wisely persevered, and carried Bickersteth. But Lord Melbourne said their mensure; since which time this great force has been kept up as it ought to be, and shall be, in he was too fond of theoretical speculation spite of agitators in Ireland, and agitators in and was untried in public life. It ended England; for, my Lords, I dread to think what by the choice of Pepys, and Bickersteth might be the consequences, if Russia were to at- had a peerage and the Rolls. As a da. tack us unprepared. I say I never will consent bater Lord Langdale brought no additionto the destruction of this force, and, early in al strength to the government, and so far the next session of Parliament, whoever may be, i Lord Melbourne was right; but Lord or whoever are, Ministers, I will have the mili- Melbourne said that he did not regard tia restored to a proper state. I say this, not Brougham as a very formidable opponent. only before my confidential advisers, but before The King observed that if Ministers had others (C. Greville and two or three others of made Campbell Lord Chancellor, “ public the Household], because I wish to have my sen
opinion would have been against them, timents known.' “Such was the substance, and, in great part lic opinion ;” he thought highly of Bicker
and that no man could stand against pubthe very words, of his Majesty's harangue. We looked at one another. "Lord Melbourne was steth on account of an answer he had made very black, and very haughty. I thought he toone of Brougham's flighty speeches at the would have broken out.' °(Vol. iii. pp. 164, London University. In the course of the 165.)
proceedings before the Privy Council with His Majesty did not let the subject drop, University, Brougham asked Bickersteth,
reference to the charter of the London and it gave rise to a decision of the Cabinet which has not before been made Cambridge against the charter, what
who was counsel for the University of known.
would happen if the new University pro“Our next Cabinet, a dinner at P. Thomp- ceeded to confer degrees without any son's, was chiefly taken up with considering a charter at all? “They would incur," very strong letter from the King on Russian ag- said Bickersteth, “ the scorn and contempt gression. H. M. proposed to call on Parliament of mankind.” It was probably to this refor a vote of 3,000 additional seamen, and to tort that the King made allusion. In the state frankly that the continued aggression of end Campbell succeeded to the Great Seal, Russia justified this demand. pressed å hope that Lord Durham would not be and was a better Chancellor than many of deluded by the fine speeches of the Emperor
his rivals. Nicholas. The King condemned in the strong
The difficulties of the Government arose est language the Emperor's speech to the Polish quite as much from the disaffection of Deputation at Warsiw, which, H. M. observed, their Radical allies as from the tactics of made the Vienna treaties of 1815 nothing bet- their avowed opponents. Their Church ter than waste paper.
The letter concluded B:lls for England and Ireland were aswith hoping that something might be said in the sailed with great violence by Charles BulRoyal Speech, at the opening of Parliament, on ler and Tom Duncombe, and even Hume, the subject of Russian aggression.
and so precarious was the condition of “We discussed the contents of this letter at Government that their resignation apthe next Cabinet, and, at last, agreed to pro- peared to be a mere question of days. pose to France and Austria a sort of defensive alliance against the encroachments of Russia. “ Even quiet and courageous Lord Melbourne We hud, however, very little hope that Austria began to give way, and, at a Cabinet on Tueswould fall in with any arrangement that might day, August 9th, when we discussed whether embroil her with the Emperor Nicholas. How-'Parliament should meet in November, and the
discussion turned on the position of the Admin-1 conversation with Lord Stanley, with istration, our chief told us that he had long had whom, in spite of strong party differences, doubts whether it was right and becoming to he had remained personally on friendly go on with the Goverument in our present con- terms. dition. There was an immense majority against us in the Lords, and the English constituencies,
“ He asked me when we were going out?' so far as we knew, were against us — - the Court I said, ' about the 8th of April. He replied, decidedly hostile — and nothing but an insig- No; you won't go out so soon as that.' nificant majority in the Commous in our favour, joined, “You wish to make us resign on the and, even there, it was only on doubtful and un- Church question, which is not so popular as popular questions that we outnumbered our op- the Corporation question.' 'Oh," he said, ponents. Lord Melbourne said a man must you own that the Tithe Bill is not so popuhave the patience of an ass to stand against lar?' • To be sure I do. But,' I added, such odds; but he added that he saw no reason you shall not have your way. We are the for meeting in November, unless it was probable masters here, at least; and now let me ask you, that the Lords would give way on the Irish Cor- How will you govern Ireland ? are you preporation Bill, and, for his part, he thought they pared for bloodshed ?” Lord Stanley said, were less likely to concede, if we forced a meet- There would be no such extremities; but that, ing in November, than if we met at the usual let what would happen, the Church must be time. Lord Lansdowne said to me, privately, protēcted.? I told him that he and his that, if the Lords carried a vote of want of con- party might come in; but they would fuil, and fidence, he, for one, would resign. He thought instead of saving the Church, would ruin themthey would not propose that vote, because they selves."" (Vol. iii. pp. 329, 330.) were afraid of putting themselves in the wrong. The necessity of proceeding with the Irish I dissented from this view : but Lord L. re- Tithe Bill, and the impossibility of carrypeated his determination. Lord Holland also expressed his doubts as to the propriety of
ing the Appropriation clause, on which Sir ing on much longer against the House of Lorus, Robert Peel had been turned out and the especially if we lost any more elections in large Melbourne Cabinet formed, threatened to communities.” (Vol. iii. pp. 269, 270.)
bring on the long-expected crisis. Hob
house attended a Cabinet with his resignaAnd so ended the Session of 1836.
tion in his pocket, and he was strongly The business of the following year backed by Lord Duncannon, Lord Glenelg, opened with no better promise. The fol- and Spring Rice; but there came a favourlowing extract is from Hobhouse's diary able division in the Commons and the of the 11th of February : —
ship righted. “I heard that what I had said of the happy ing which materially altered the prospects
An event, however, was now approachday that was to release us from our thankless servitule had given rise to rumours of our im- of the Government and the whole aspect mediate relinquishment of office. The com- of affairs. On the 26th May, two days ment on this from our opponents was somewhat after the celebration of the Princess Vicflattering; for they were pleased to say that I toria's eighteenth birthday, it was first was honest and truthspeaking, and really did made known to Ministers that the King wish to leave office. This was true, so far as was seriously ill. He was present, howthe desire to leave office was concerned; not so ever, at a Council on the 27th of May, but much, however, from any dislike of office, as his weakness and irritability increased so because I did not see how we could retain it rapidly that it became difficult to address now, without loss of character, and conse- him on public affairs. On the 16th June quently, of influence. If we were to go out on
a Council was summoned by Queen Adelosing our Irish Corporation Bill, I thought all
laide to prepare a form of prayer for His would be well. We should avoid the embarrassment, not only of the Tithe Bill, but the Majesty's recovery, but all hope was over; Canada Bill, and the proposals of our Radical and early on the morning of the 20th June friends, which were sure to damage us, though William IV. expired. The following devery unjustly, with our constituents. I was scription of the accession of Her Majesty aware that this was only a party consideration; to the throne is too striking to be but I thought that, even so far as the advance- omitted : ment of good principles was concerned, our
“ Poulett Thompson called on me early the speedy retreat was highly expedient. I did not see how we could possibly get over the Irish next day (Tuesday, 20th June), and told me Tithe question. Vernon Smith hinted that he that the King had died at twelve minutes past should be compelled to resign, if we abandoned two that morning. He (Thompson) wished to
know whether I had a summons to attend the the Appropriation clause.” (Vol. iii. pp. 323, 324.)
young Queen. I had not; but shortly after he
went away, at a quarter past eleven, a inessenShortly afterwards he had a curious' ger left a summons for me to attend a Council at Kensington Palace at eleven. Shortly after-saw some tears in the eyes of the latter. The wards a Cabinet-box came, containing the phy- only person who was rather more curious than sicians' bulletin of the King's death, and a affected was Lord Lyndhurst, who looked over summons to Kensington Palace. I mounted my Her Majesty's right shoulder as she was reuing, horse, androde to Kensington. Arriving at as if to see that she read all that was set down the Palace, I was shown into the antechamber for her. of the Music-rvom. It was full of Privy Coun- “ After reading the Declaration, Her Majesty cillors, standing round the long table, set in took the usual oath, which was administered to order, as it seemed, for a Council. I had a few her by Mr. Charles Greville, Clerk of the Counwords with Lords Stanley and Ellenborough, also cil, who, by the way, let the Prayer-book drop. with Graham, and others of that party. Sir The Queen then subscribed the oath, and a duRobert Peel and the Duke of Wellington were plicate of it for Scotland. She was designatel, on the right, near the head of the table. Lords in the beginning of the oath, “ Alexandrina Melbourne and Lansdowne, in full dress, with Victoria," but she signed herself - VICTORIA Russell, Duncannon, Thompson, Loru Grey, R.” Her handwriting was good. Several of and others of our party, on the left, near the the Council, Lord Lyndhurst, the Duke of top of the table. The Duke of Argyll (Lord Cumberland, and the Duke of Wellington, came Steward), and one or two officers of the House to the table to look at the signature, as if to dishold, were behind the arm-chair at the top. cover what her accomplishments in that departThere were nearly ninety Privy Councillors ment were. Some formal Orders in Council present — so I was told. After a little time, were made, and proclamations signed by the Lord Lansdowne, advancing to the table, ad- Queen, who addressed Lords Lansdowne and dressed the Lords and others of the Council, and Melbourne, with smiles, several times, and informed them of the death of William IV.; and with much cordiality. The next part of the reminded them that it was their duty to inform ceremony was swearing in the new Privy CounHer Majesty Queen Victoria of that event, and cil. A cushion was placed on the right of the of her accession to the throne. He added that Queen's chair, and the Dukes of Cumberland he, accompanied by those who might choose to and Sussex first took the oath. They kissed the assist him, would wait on Her Majesty. Ac- hand of the Queen; she saluted them affectioncordingly, Lord Lansdowne and Lord Melbourne, ately on the cheek. She had kissed them before, then the Duke of Cumberland (now King of in the inner ap:ırtment, as Lord Lansdowne told Hanover), then the Duke of Sussex, together me. The Archbishops and the Lord Chancellor with the Archbishops of Canterbury and York, were then sworn; and afterwards Lords Linsand the Lord Chancellor, withdrew through the downe and Melbourne, the Duke of Wellington, folding doors behind the chair, and saw the and some twenty together. There was a good Queen. She was alone; but Lord Lansdowne deal of bustle and noise whilst this was going toli me that, as they entered the apartment, on. P. Thompson, Lord Howick, and myself, they saw a lady retiring into the back apart- with some ten or twelve others, were then
Lorul Lansdowne returned, and in sworn together. The swearing in the Privy formed the Council he had seen the Queen, and Councillors lasted half an hour at least. Some informed Her Majesty of the death of King Wil- of us then sat down at the Council-taple; an-1 liam, and of her accession. Not long after the Queen then said, I name and appoint wards the door was thrown open; the Dukes of Henry Marquis of Lansdowne, Lord President Cumberland and Sussex advanced to receive of my most honourable Privy Council;' after Her Majesty, and the young creature walked in, which Lord Lansdowne read several Orders in and took her seat in the arm-chair. She was Council. One of them was for delivering orer very plainly dressed in mourning, a black the body of the late King to the Lord Earl scarf round her neck, without any cap or orna- Marshal, for embalmment; another, for directment on her head; but her hair was braided ing Sir Hussey Vivian, Master of the Ordnance, tastily on the top of her head. She inclined her to fire the Park guns, and the Duke of Wellingself gracefully on taking her seat. The Royal ton to fire the Tower guns, on the proclamation Dukes, the Archbishops, the Lord Chancellor, of Her Majesty's accession. During this time and the Duke of Wellington were on the right the doors of the room were opened frequently, of Her Majesty; Lords Lans lowne and Mel- and many persons admitted to see the young bourne were on her left. Soon after she was Queen, who continued sitting quietly at the seated, Lord Melbourne stepped forward, and heard of the table; giving her approval in the presented her with a paper from which she usual form to several Orders in Council. reat her Declaration. She went through this “I went then into the antechamber, and difficult task with the utmost grace and propri- signed the Proclamation declaring Victoria ety; neither too timid nor too assured. Her Queen. A crowd was assembled round the voice was rather subdued, but not faltering, table. The Lord Mayor of London, and several pronouncing all the words clearly, and seeming Aldermen and others, were present; amongst to feel the sense of what she spoke. Every one them my friend Inglis. They signed the Pmsappeared touched with her manner, pîrticularly lamation, as well as those who were Privy the Duke of Wellington and Lord Melbourne. I Councillors, to give an appearance of election to the sovereignty; at least, that was the reason were now sworn, and kissed hands. Several assigned for this part of the ceremony. 1 Orders' in Council were then read, and the went from Kensington to the House of Commons, Queen gave the usual approval, with her soft and took the oaths required.
voice, and her pleasing smile. Her Majesty then “ I then went, at two o'clock, to the Cabinet rose, and retired into the Royal closet. Lord Ministers of William IV., assembled in Downing Melbourne, and one or two others, were then Street; all were present except Lord Holland. I called into the closet, and received by Her Majthen learned that Lord Melbourne had been esty alone. Lord Landsdowne told me that the summoned to attend the Queen at nine o'clock Queen had remarked to him, she knew she in the morning, and that he had written the ought to receive her Ministers unaccompanied Declaration which Her Majesty had read, on by any lady. taking her seat at the head of the Council-table. “ I shall go back & day or two, and I shall Only one word had been altered in that Decla- venture to copy verbatim au extract from my ration; it was the epithet immediately preceding Diary for the day of the accession: ' reliance,' which was altered into . FIRM reli- "It is impossible to speak too highly of the ance' by Palmerston. Russell told me he Queen's demeanour and conduct during the whole thought the alteration had not been an improve ceremony. They deserve all that has been said ment; and Lord Joho added, but Melbourne of them by all parties, and must have been the always gives up bis opinion in these matters, offspring, not of art, nor of education, but of a and, when he asks advice, takes it.'
noble nature, to use the words of the well“Lord Melbourne now communicated to us the turned eulogy pronounced upon them by Sir Queen's pleasure that she desired no change Robert Peel, (Vol. iii. pp. 384-390.) should take place in the Cabinet. Lord Melbourne mentioned that the Queen had remarked to him
We trust that we may, without indisthat Mr. Spring Rice was not at our first meet- cretion, add Sir John Hobhouse's account ing. He was not; for he had not received any of his first interview, as Minister for Insummons until one o'clock. We did not trans-dia, with the Sovereign of that great Emact any business, except making some arrange- pire, which took place almost three weeks ments for proclaiming the Queen the next day. later. Russell appeared to me much affected by the death of King William, and I thought there was
“ After the Council, Lord Melbourne told me more gloom on the faces of all than might have that the Queen had inquired after me, remarkbeen expected, not only amongst ourselves, but ing that she had not get seen me. I thought generally.
it my duty, therefore, to send H. M. my last “ The proclamation of the Queen's accession private letters froin Lord Auckland and Lord took place at St. James's Palace. Her Majesty Elphinstone. Impuediately afterwards I had a was presented to the people at the window fuc- note from Her Majesty, appointing me to come ing Marlborough House. Lords Melbourne,
to her next day, at a little past eleven, at Buckand Landsdowne, and Duncannon, with Spring ingham Palace. The Queen removed from KenRice, in court dresses, were at her side, with sington, to Buckingham Palace on Thursday, certain great Officers of State behind her. The July 13th. Duchess of Kent was near her, on her right.
“I obeyed Her Majesty's commands, and The crowd was very great, but composed of de went to Buckingham Palace at the time apcently-dressed people, and gave Her Majesty a
pointed. The apartments were in great disorwarm reception. Daniel O'Connell was unwise der; housemaids were on their knees scrubbing enough to play a very conspicuous part, and the floors, and servants laying down carpets. act as a sort of fugleman to the multitude, and After waiting a little time with a page, the door regulate their acclamations.
opened, and the Queen walked in, smiling and * I went to St. James's Palace at twelve curtsying. She placed herself on a sofı, on one o'clock and found the Queen holding a Council side of a small table, and desired me to take a, in the Throne-room. She was seated in a chair cbair opposite to her. She told me that she had of state at the head of a long table below the read Lord Elphinstone's letter, but had not had throne; she was dressed much as she had been time to read Lord Auckland's. She added that the day before, except that she wore a black Lord Elphinstone's was an interesting letter, straw hat and feathers. The Archbishops were and that he was very young for so important a seated at the table, and two or three others not command. I smiled and observed that · youth belonging to the Cabinet. Spring Rice and oth- was no disqualification for empire,' at which ers, who had not been sworn in the day before, H. M. laughed, and looked pleased. She re
marked upon the conduct of Sir Peregrine
Maitland, in refusing to allow the regimental * This is a curious mistake. The document signed bands to attend the Hindoo ceremonies. She by Her Majesty on her accession is the Declaration för the maintenance of the Established Kirk of agreed with me in thinking it imprudent, and Scotland, and this instrument was also signed by that the zeal of some persons to propagate all the l'rivy Councillors present. It is kept in the Christianity often defeated its own object. I obbooks of the Privy Council. ever signed by Ministers. The notion of an ap- served that Sir Peregrine Maitland was what pearance of election to the sovereignty” is an ab- was called a • serious' man. Yes,' replied surd misconception.
H. M., 'and his wife too, who is a sister of the
Duke of Richmond, is serious also.' She told strengthened not only by the entire conme she approved of Lord Elphinstone's caution fidence of the Sovereign, but also by a in that respect, and desired me to tell him so; House of Commons elected under circumand she graciously acceded to my request to stances widely differing from those which convey her thanks, on her accession to the had called it into being the preceding Parthrone, to Lord Auckland for his geueral con- liament. The dissolution and election of duct. " I asked H. M. if she had read Burnet's the part of the Tories led by Sir Robert
1835 were a premature trial of strength on • Travels.' She replied she had not, but she bad seen and spoken to him, and would read his Peel to recover the power they had lost, book. After a little more conversation, I re- and the result was a House in which the quested H. M.'s permission to communicate with Opposition could at least hold Ministers in her on Indian affairs, and to send her any news continual check. The election of 1837 was with which I thought she would be interested or governed by a different feeling, and the ought to be acquainted. To this she assented Cabinet which seemed so near destruction very graciously, and I rose, and withdrew. I in the first months of its existence, was cannot refrain from saying that I received a destined to retain the supreme direction most pleasing impression from her manner and of affairs for a further period of four her remarks, as being superior to her age, and
years. even to her station; at least such Royalties as I have seen. I heard afterwards from Colonel and have to deal with the advisers and
As we approach nearer to our own times Cavendish, that Her Majesty had told Madame Lezhen, her late governess, that she had had a
measures of Her present Majesty, our task very interesting and instructive conversation becomes more delicate, and our limits with me.
I cannot say I gave her much in- warn us that we have perhaps already struction. My principal information related to taxed the patience of our readers. We the three functionaries at the head of the In- therefore pass over the discussions and dedian Presidencies; with each of whom I was bates caused by the Canadian Rebellion well acquaintel, and entitled to speak of him.” and by Lord Durham's mission to that (Vol. iii. pp. 402–404.)
province. N ver was greater acrimony
shown in Parliament than on that occaThe following scene at the new Court is
sion characteristic and amusing :
never was a Government placed in
a more difficult position than Lord Mel“ The dinner at the Castle this day pasosd off bourne was by the intemperate and overagreeably, and, when in the drawing-room, the bearing policy of Lord Durham. The Queen sat down to chess with the Queen of the Emperor Nicholas, who knew Lord DurBelgiang. H. M. had never played before; ham well, having seen him as Ambassador Lord Melbourne told her how to move, and Lord at St. Petersburg, said, “If one of my Palmerston also assisted her. I looked on for officers had behaved as he had done, he soine time, without taking part in the game, and would have been tried for his life on his I might as well have abstained altogether; for return." And Lord Wellesley said to when Melbourne and Palmerston gave up ad- Hobhouse, alluding to the time when he vising Her Majesty, in order that I might suc- had been reprimanded by the Court of ceed to them, i did not succeed better than my Directors, “ My answer was the conquest colleagues. I was very near winning the game, of the Mahrattas. I did not become when I lost it by an oversight, and by being very often asked by Her Majesty, What must i sulky and run home.” do?' There was also some little confusion cre- It was in June, 1838, that the cabinet ated by the two queens on the board and the first received notice from Sir Alexander two Queens at the table. Her Majesty was not Burnes, our agent at Caubul, that the Emso discouraged by her defeat as to prevent her peror Nicholas had recently despatched a playing again the evening after this. Who Russian agent with a letter to Dost played for the Queen I do not know; but H, M. Mohammed. This was the commencement ran up to me laughing, and saying she had won. of the Russian intrigues in Central Asia She asked me how she came to lose yesterday. I which eventually led to the Affghan War, replied, · Because your Majesty had such bad and some of the most important transacadvisers; ' on which she laughed heartily, and so did the Queen of the Belgians, who, by the tions in which Sir John Hobhouse was offiway, spoke English well.” (Vol. iii. pp. 424, cially engaged. The British Government 425.)
resolved to check the intervention of
Persia, instigated by Russia, by sending an The nation shared the cheerful and expedition into the Persian Gulf
, where auspicious influence of the new reign. The the Island of Karrak was soon afterwards demise of the Crown gave rise of course occupied and held by our troops, and Lord to an early dissolution of Parliament, and Auckland ordered movements of troops on the Adininistration soon found itself the North-Western frontier. Sir John