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The Letters of Horace Walpole, Volume 1 by Horace Walpole

Part 3 out of 18

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such credit to the denunciation, that on the eve of his last
departure he took leave of his son and the Princess of Wales with
tears, telling them he should never see them more. It was
certainly his own approaching fate that melted him, not the
thought of quitting for ever two persons he hated. He did
sometimes so much justice to his son as to say, "Il est fougueux,
mais il a de l'honneur."-For Queen Caroline, to his confidants he
termed her "cette diablesse Madame la Princesse."

I do not know whether it was about the same period, that in a
tender mood he promised the Duchess of Kendal, that if she
survived him, and it were possible for the departed to return to
this world, he would make her a visit. The Duchess, on his
death, so much expected the accomplishment of that engagement,
that a large raven, or some black fowl, flying into one of the
windows of her villa at Isteworth, she was persuaded it was the
soul of her departed monarch so accoutred, and received and
treated it with all the respect and tenderness of duty, till the
royal bird or she took their last flight.

George II., no more addicted than his father to too much
religious credulity, had yet implicit faith in the German notion
of vampires, and has more than once been angry with my father for
speaking irreverently of those imaginary bloodsuckers.

the Duchess of Kendal, of whom I have said so much, was when
Mademoiselle Schulemberg, maid of honour to the Electress Sophia,
mother of King George I. and destined by King William and the Act
of Settlement to succeed Queen Anne. George fell in love with
Mademoiselle Schulemberg, though by no means an inviting
object-so little, that one evening when she was in waiting behind
the Electress's chair at a ball, the Princess Sophia, who had
made herself mistress of the language of her future subjects,
said in English to Mrs. Howard, afterwards Countess of Suffolk,
then at her court, "Look at that mawkin, and think of her being
my son's passion!" Mrs. Howard, who told me the story, protested
that she was terrified, forgetting that Mademoiselle Schulemberg
did not understand English.

The younger Mademoiselle Schulemberg, who came over with her and
was created Countess Walsingham, passed for her niece; but was so
like to the King that it is not very credible that the Duchess,
who had affected to pass for cruel, had waited for the
left-handed marriage.

The Duchess under whatever denomination, had attained and
preserved to the last her ascendant over the king: but
notwithstanding that influence, he was not more constant to her
than he had been to his avowed wife; for another acknowledged
mistress, whom he also brought over, was Madame Kilmansegge,
Countess of Platen, who was created Countess of Darlington, and
by whom he was indisputably father of Charlotte, married to Lord
Viscount Howe, and mother of the present earl. (77) Lady Howe was
never publicly acknowledged as the Kings daughter; but Princess
Amelia, (78) treated her daughter, Mrs. Howe, (79) upon that
foot, and one evening, when I was present, gave her a ring, with
a small portrait of George I, with a crown of diamonds.

Lady Darlington, whom I saw at my mother's in my infancy, and
whom I remember by being terrified at her enormous figure, was as
corpulent and ample as the Duchess was long and emaciated. Two
fierce black eyes, large and rolling beneath two lofty arched
eyebrows, two acres of cheeks spread with crimson, an ocean of
neck that overflowed and was not distinguished from the lower
part of her body, and no part restrained by stays 80) no wonder
that a child dreaded such an ogress, and that the mob of London
were highly diverted at the importation of so uncommon a
seraglio! They were food from all the venom of the Jacobites;
and, indeed nothing could be grosser than the ribaldry that was
vomited out in lampoons, libels, and every channel of abuse,
against the sovereign and the new court, and chaunted even in
their hearing about the public streets. (81)

On the other hand, it was not till the last year or two of his
reign that their foreign sovereign paid the nation the compliment
of taking openly an English mistress. That personage was Anne
Brett, eldest daughter by her second husband, (82) of the
repudiated wife of the Earl Of Macclesfield, the unnatural mother
of Savage the poet. Miss Brett was very handsome, but dark
enough by her eyes, complexion, and hair, for a Spanish beauty.
Abishag was lodged in the palace under the eyes of Bathsheba, who
seemed to maintain her power, as other favourite sultanas have
done, by suffering partners in the sovereign's affections. When
his Majesty should return to England, a countess's coronet was to
have rewarded the young lady's compliance, and marked her
secondary rank. She might, however, have proved a troublesome
rival, as she seemed SO confident of the power of her charms,
that whatever predominant ascendant the Duchess might retain, her
own authority in the palace she thought was to yield to no one
else. George I., when his son the Prince of Wales and the
Princess had quitted St. James's on their quarrel with him, had
kept back their three eldest daughters, who lived with him to his
death, even after there had outwardly been a reconciliation
between the King and Prince. Miss Brett, when the King set out,
ordered a door to be broken out of her apartment into the royal
garden. Anne, the eldest of the Princesses, offended at that
freedom, and not choosing such a companion in her walks, ordered
the door to be walled up again. Miss Brett as imperiously
reversed that command. The King died suddenly, and the empire of
the new mistress and her promised coronet vanished. She
afterwards married Sir William Leman, and was forgotten before
her reign had transpired beyond the confines of Westminster!
(70) Her names were Sophia Dorothea ; but I call her by the
latter, to distinguish her from the Princess Sophia, her
mother-in-law, on whom the crown of Great Britain was settled.
(71) Konigsmark behaved with great intrepidity, and was wounded
at a bull-feast in Spain. See Letters from Spain of the Contesse
D'Anois, vol. ii. He was brother of the beautiful Comtesse de
Konigsmark, mistress of Augustus the Second, King of Poland.
(72) It was not this Count Konigsmark, but an elder brother, who
was accused of having suborned Colonel Vratz, Lieutenant Stern,
and one George Boroskey, to murder Mr. Thynne in Pall-Mall, on
the 12th of February, 1682, and for which they were executed in
that street on the 10th of March. For the particulars, see
Howell's State Trials, vol. ix. p. 1, and Sir John Reresby's
Memoirs, p. 135. "This day," says Evelyn, in his Diary of the
10th of March, "was executed Colonel Vrats, for the execrable
murder of Mr. Thynne, set on by the principal, Konigsmark: he
went to execution like an undaunted hero, as one that had done a
friendly office for that base coward, Count Konigsmark, who had
hopes to marry his widow, the rich Lady Ogle, and was acquitted
by a corrupt jury, and so got away: Vrats told a friend of mine,
who accompanied him to the gallows, and gave him some advice,
that he did not value dying of a rush, and hoped and believed God
would deal with him like a gentleman." Mr. Thynne was buried in
Westminster Abbey; the manner of his death being represented on
his monument. He was the Issachar of Absalom and Achitophel; in
which poem Dryden, describing the respect and favour with which
Monmouth was received upon his progress in the year 1691, Says:
"Hospitable hearts did most commend
Wise Issachar, his wealthy, western friend."

Reresby states, that Lady Ogle, immediately after the marriage,
"repenting herself of the match, fled from him into Holland,
before they were bedded." This circumstance added to the fact,
that Mr. Thynne had formerly seduced Miss Trevor, one of the
maids of honour to Catherine of Portugal, wife of Charles II.,
gave birth to the following lines:

"Here lies Tom Thynne, of Longleat Hall,
Who never would have miscarried,
Had he married the woman he lay withal,
Or lain with the woman he married."

On the 30th of May, in the same year, Lady Ogle was married to
Charles Seymour, Duke of Somerset.-E.

(73) Lady Suffolk thought he rather would have her regent of
Hanover; and she also told me, that George I. had offered to live
again with his wife, but she refused, unless her pardon were
asked publicly. She said, what most affected her was the
disgrace that would be brought on her children; and if she were
only pardoned, that would not remove it. Lady Suffolk thought she
was then divorced, though the divorce was never published; and
that the old Elector consented to his son's marrying the Duchess
of Kendal with the left hand-but it seems strange, that George I.
should offer to live again with his wife, and yet be divorced
front her. Perhaps George II. to vindicate his mother, supposed
that offer and her spirited refusal.

(74) George II. was scrupulously exact in separating and keeping
in each country whatever belonged to England or Hanover. Lady
Suffolk told me, that on his accession he could not find a knife,
fork, and spoon of gold which had belonged to Queen Ann(@, and
which he remembered to have seen here at his first -arrival. He
found them at Hanover on his first journey thither after he came
to the crown, and brought them back to England. He could not
recollect much of greater value; for, on Queen Anne's death, and
in the interval before the arrival of the new family, such a
clearance had been made of her Majesty's jewels, or the new King
so instantly distributed what he found amongst his German
favourites, that, as Lady S. told me, Queen Caroline never
obtained of the late Queen's.jewels but one pearl necklace.

(75) George I., says Coxe, who never loved his wife, gave
implicit credit to the account of her infidelity, as related by
his father; consented to her imprisonment, and obtained from the
ecclesiastical consistory a divorce, which was passed on the 28th
of December 1694." Memoirs of Walpole.-E.

(76) "the unfortunate Sophia was confined in the castle of Alden,
situated on the small river Aller, in the duchy of Zell. She
terminated her miserable existence, after a long captivity of
thirty-two years, on the 13th of November 1726, only seven months
before the death of George the First; and she was announced in
the Gazette, under the title of the Electress Dowager of Hanover.
During her whole confinement she behaved with no less mildness
than dignity; and, on receiving the sacrament once every week,
never omitted making the most solemn asseverations, that she was
not guilty of the crime laid to her charge." Coxe, vol. i. p.

(77) Admiral Lord Howe, and also of sir William, afterwards
Viscount Howe.-E.

(78) Second daughter of George the Second; born in 1711, died
October the 31st, 1786.

(79) Caroline, the eldest of Lady Howe's children, had married a
gentleman of her own name, John Howe, Esq, of Honslop, in the
county of Bucks.

(80) According to Coxe, she was, when young, a woman of great
beauty, but became extremely corpulent as she advanced in years.
"Her power over the King," he adds, "was not equal to that of the
Duchess of Kendal, but her character for rapacity was not
inferior." On the death of her husband, in 1721, she was created
Countess of Leinster in the kingdom of Ireland, Baroness of
Brentford, and Countess of Darlington.-E.

(81) One of the German ladies, being abused by the mob, was said
to have put her head out of the coach, and cried in bad English,
"Good people, why you abuse us? We come for all your goods."
"Yes, damn ye," answered a fellow in the crowd, "and for all our
chattels too." I mention this because on the death of Princess
Amelia the newspapers revived the story and told it of her,
though I had heard it threescore years before of one of her
grandfather's mistresses.

(82) Colonel Brett, the companion of Wycherley, Steele, Davenant,
etc. and of whom the following particulars are recorded by
Spence, on the authority of Dr. Young:-"The Colonel was a
remarkably handsome man. The Countess looking out of her window
on a great disturbance in the street, saw him assaulted by some
bailiffs, who were going to arrest him. She paid his debt,
released him from their pursuit, and soon after married him.
When she died, she left him more than he expected; with which he
bought an estate in the country, built a very handsome house upon
it, and furnished it in the highest taste; went down to see the
finishing of it, returned to London in hot weather and in too
much hurry; got a fever by it, and died. Nobody had a better
taste of what would please the town, and his opinion was much
regarded by the actors and dramatic poets." Anecdotes, p. 355.-E.


Quarrel between George the First and his Son-Earl of
Sunderland-Lord Stanhope-South Sea Scheme-Death of Craggs-Royal
Reconcilement-Peerage Bill defeated-Project for seizing the
Prince of Wales and conveying him to America-Duke of
Newcastle-Royal Christening-Open Rupture-Prince and Princess of
Wales ordered to leave the Palace.

One of the most remarkable occurrences in the reign of George I.
was the open quarrel between him and his son the Prince of Wales.
Whence the dissension originated; whether the prince's attachment
to his mother embittered his mind against his father, or whether
hatred of' his father occasioned his devotion to her, I do not
pretend to know. I do suspect front circumstances, that the
hereditary enmity in the House of Brunswick between the parents
and their eldest sons dated earlier than the divisions between
the first two Georges. The Princess Sophia was a woman of parts
and great vivacity: in the earlier part of her life she had
professed much zeal for the deposed House of Stuart, as appeared
by a letter of hers in print, addressed to the Chevalier de St.
George. It is natural enough for all princes,-who have no
prospect of being benefited by the deposition of a crowned head,
to choose to think royalty an indelible character. The Queen of
Prussia, daughter of George I. lived and died an avowed Jacobite.
The Princess Sophia, youngest child of the Queen of Bohemia, was
consequently the most remote from any pretensions to the British
crown; (83) but no sooner had King William procured a settlement
of it after Queen Anne on her Electoral Highness, than nobody
became a stancher Whig than the Princess Sophia, nor could be
more impatient to mount the throne of the expelled Stuarts. It
is certain, that during the reign of Anne, the Elector George was
inclined to the Tories, though-after his mother's death and his
own accession he gave himself to the opposite party. But if be
and his mother espoused different factions, Sophia found a ready
partisan in her grandson, the Electoral prince; (84) and it is
true, that the demand made by the Prince of his writ of summons
to the House of Lords as Duke of Cambridge, which no wonder was
so offensive to Queen Anne, was made in concert with his
grandmother, without the privity of the Elector his father. Were
it certain, as was believed, that Bolingbroke and the Jacobites
prevailed on the Queen *85) to consent to her brother coming
secretly to England, and to seeing him in her closet; she might
have been induced to that step, when provoked by an attempt to
force a distant and foreign heir upon her while still alive. The
Queen and her heiress being dead, the new King and his son came
over in apparent harmony; and on his Majesty's first visit to his
electoral dominions, the Prince of Wales was even left Regent;
but never being trusted afterwards with that dignity on like
occasions, it is probable that the son discovered too much
fondness for acting the king, or that the father conceived a
jealousy of his son having done so. Sure it is, that on the
King's return great divisions arose in the court; and the Whigs
were divided-some devoting themselves to the wearer of the crown,
and others to the expectant. I shall not enter into the detail
of those squabbles, of which I am but superficially informed.
The predominant ministers were the Earls of Sunderland and
Stanhope. The brothers-in-law, the Viscount Townshend and Mr.
Robert Walpole, adhered to the Prince. Lord Sunderland is said
to have too much resembled as a politician the earl his father,
who was so principal an actor in the reign of James II. and in
bringing about the Revolution. Between the earl in question and
the Prince of Wales grew mortal antipathy; of which -,in anecdote
told me by my father himself will leave no doubt. When a
reconciliation had been patched up between the two courts, and my
father became first lord of the treasury a second time, Lord
Sunderland in a t`ete-`a-t`ete with him said, "Well, Mr. Walpole,
we have settled matters for the present; but we must think whom
we shall have next" (meaning in case of the King's demise).
Walpole said, "Your lordship may think as you please, but my part
is taken;" meaning to support the established settlement.

Earl Stanhope was a man of strong and violent passions, and had
dedicated himself to the army; and was so far from thinking of
any other line, that when Walpole, who first suggested the idea
of appointing him secretary of state, proposed it to him, he flew
into a furious rage, and was on the point of a downright quarrel,
looking on himself' as totally unqualified for the post, and
suspecting it for a plan of mocking him. He died in one of those
tempestuous sallies, being pushed in the House of Lords on the
explosion of the South Sea scheme. That iniquitous affair, which
Walpole had early exposed, and to remedy the mischiefs of which
he alone was deemed adequate, had replaced him at the head of
affairs, and obliged Sunderland to submit to be only a coadjutor
of the administration. The younger Craggs, (86) a showy
vapouring man, had been brought forward by the ministers to
oppose Walpole; but was soon reduced to beg his assistance on one
(87) of their ways and means. Craggs caught his death by calling
at the gate of Lady March, (88) who was ill of the small-pox; and
being told so by the porter, went home directly, fell ill of the
same distemper, and died. His father, the elder Craggs, whose
very good sense Sir R. Walpole much admired, soon followed his
son, and his sudden death was imputed to grief; but having been
deeply dipped in the iniquities of the South Sea, and wishing to
prevent confiscation and save his ill-acquired wealth for his
daughters, there was no doubt of his having despatched himself.
When his death was divulged, Sir Robert Owned that the unhappy
man had in an oblique manner hinted his resolution to him.
The reconciliation of the royal family was so little cordial,
that I question whether the Prince did not resent Sir Robert
Walpole's return to the King's service. Yet had Walpole defeated
a plan of Sunderland that @would in future have exceedingly
hampered the successor, as it was calculated to do; nor do I
affect to ascribe Sir Robert's victory directly to zeal for the
Prince: personal and just views prompted his opposition, and the
commoners of England were not less indebted to him than the
Prince. Sunderland had devised a bill to restrain the crown from
ever adding above six peers to a number limited., (89) The actual
peers were far from disliking the measure; but Walpole, taking
fire, instantly communicated his dissatisfaction to all the great
commoners, who might for ever be excluded from the peerage. He
spoke, he wrote, (90) he persuaded, and the bill was rejected by
the Commons with disdain, after it had passed the House of Lords.

But the hatred of some of the junta at court had gone farther,
horribly farther. On the death of George 1. Queen Caroline found
in his cabinet a proposal of the Earl of Berkeley, (92) then, I
think, first lord of the admiralty, to seize the Prince of Wales,
and convey him to America, whence he should never be heard of
more. This detestable project copied probably from the Earl of
Falmouth's offer to Charles II. with regard to his Queen, was in
the handwriting of Charles Stanhope, elder brother of the Earl of
Harrington: (93) and so deep was the impression deservedly made
on the mind of George II. by that abominable paper, that all the
favour of Lord Harrington, when secretary of state, could never
obtain the smallest boon to his brother, though but the
subordinate transcriber. (94) George I. was too humane to listen
to such an atrocious deed. It was not very kind to the
conspirators to leave such an instrument behind him; and if
virtue and conscience will not check bold bad men from paying
court by detestable offers, the King's carelessness or
indifference in such an instance ought to warn them of the little
gratitude that such machinations can inspire or expect.

Among those who had preferred the service of the King to that of
the heir apparent, was the Duke of Newcastle;, (95) Who, having
married his sister to Lord Townshend, both his royal highness and
the viscount had expected would have adhered to that
connexion-and neither forgave his desertion.-I am aware of the
desultory manner in which I have told my story, having mentioned
the reconciliation of the King and Prince before I have given any
account of their public rupture. The chain of my thoughts led me
into the preceding details, and, if I do not flatter myself, will
have let you into the motives of my dramatis personae better than
if I had 'more exactly observed chronology.- and as I am not
writing a regular tragedy, and profess but to relate facts as I
recollect them; or (if you will allow me to imitate French
writers of tragedy) may I not plead that I have unfolded my piece
as they do, by introducing two courtiers to acquaint one another,
and by bricole the audience, with what had passed in the
penetralia before the tragedy commences?

The exordium thus duly prepared, you must suppose, ladies, that
the second act opens with a royal christening The Princess of
Wales had been delivered of a second son. The Prince had
intended his uncle, the Duke of York, Bishop of Osnaburg, should
with his Majesty be godfathers. Nothing could equal the
indignation of his Royal Highness when the King named the Duke of
Newcastle for second sponsor, and would hear of no other. The
christening took place as usual in the Princess's bedchamber.
Lady Suffolk, then in waiting as woman of the bedchamber, and of
most accurate memory painted the scene to me exactly. On one
side of the bed stood the godfathers and godmother; on the other
the Prince and the Princess's ladies. No sooner had the Bishop
closed the ceremony, than the Prince, crossing the feet of the
bed in a rage, stepped up to the Duke of Newcastle, and, holding
up his hand and fore-finger in a menacing attitude, said, "You
are a rascal, but I shall find you," meaning, in broken English,
"I shall find a time to be revenged."-"What was my astonishment,"
continued Lady Suffolk, "when going to the Princess's apartment
the next morning, the yeOMen in the guard-chamber pointed their
halberds at my breast, and told me I must not pass! I urged that
it was my duty to attend the Princess. They said, 'No matter; I
must not pass that way.'"

In one word, the King had been so provoked at the Prince's
outrage in his presence, that it had been determined to inflict a
still greater insult on his Royal Highness. His threat to the
Duke was pretended to be understood as a challenge; and to
prevent a duel he had actually been put under arrest-as if a
Prince of Wales could stoop to fight with a subject. The arrest
was soon taken off; but at night the Prince and Princess were
ordered to leave the palace, (96) and retired to the house of her
chamberlain, the Earl of Grantham, in Albemarle Street.

(83) It is remarkable, that either the weak propensity of the
Stuarts to popery, or the visible connexion between regal and
ecclesiastic power, had such operation on many of the branches of
that family, who were at a distance from the crown of England, to
wear which it is necessary to be a Protestant, that two or three
of the daughters of the king and Queen of Bohemia, though their
parents had lost every thing in the struggle between the two
religions, turned Roman Catholics; and so did one or more of the
sons of the Princess Sophia, brothers of the Protestant
candidate, George I.

(84) Afterwards George II.

(85) I believe it was a fact, that the poor weak Queen, being
disposed even to cede the crown to her brother, consulted Bishop
Wilkins, called the Prophet, to know what would be the
consequence of such a step. He replied, "Madam, you would be in
the Tower in a month, and dead in three." This Sentence, dictated
by common sense, her Majesty took for inspiration, and dropped
all thoughts of resigning the crown.

*86) James Craggs, Jun, buried in Westminster Abbey, with an
epitaph by Pope. [Craggs died on the 16th of February, 1721.
His monument was executed by Guelphi, whom Lord Burlington
invited into the kingdom. Walpole considered it graceful and
simple, but that the artist was an indifferent sculptor. Dr.
Johnson objects to Pope's inscription, that it is partly in Latin
and partly in English. "If either language," he says, "be
preferable to the other, let that only be used; for no reason can
be given why part of the information should be given in one
tongue, and part in another, on a tomb more than in any other
place or any other occasion: such an epitaph resembles the
conversation of a foreigner, who tells part of his meaning by
words, and conveys part by signs."]

(87) I think it was the sixpenny tax on offices.

(88) Sarah Cadogan, afterwards Duchess of Richmond.

(89) Queen Anne's creation of twelve peers at once, to obtain a
majority in the House of Lords, offered an ostensible plea for
the restrictions.

(90) Sir Robert published a pamphlet against the bill, entitled,
"The Thoughts of a Member of the Lower House, in relation to a
project for restraining and limiting the powers of the Crown in
the future creation of Peers." On the other side, Addison's pen
was employed in defending the measure, in a paper called "The Old
Whig," against Steele, who attacked it in a pamphlet entitled
"The Plebeian."-E.

(91) The effect of Sir Robert's speech on the House," says Coxe,
"exceeded the sanguine expectations: it fixed those who had
before been wavering and irresolute, brought over many who had
been tempted by the speciousness of the measure to favour
introduction, and procured its rejection, by a triumphant
majority of 269 against 177." Memoirs, Vol. i.-E.

(92) James, third Earl of Berkeley. knight of the garter, etc.
In March 1718, he was appointed first lord of the admiralty, in
which post he continued all the reign of George the First. He
died at the castle of Aubigny in France in 1736.]

(93) William Stanhope, first Earl of Harrington of that family.

(94) Coxe states, that such was the indignation which the perusal
of this paper excited, that, when Sir Robert espoused Charles
Stanhope's interest, the King rejected the application with some
expressions of resentment, and declared that no consideration
should induce him to assign to him any place of trust or honour.-

(95) Thomas Holles Pelham, Duke of Newcastle, lord chamberlain,
then secretary of state, and lastly, first lord of the treasury
under George II.; the same King to whom he had been so obnoxious
in the preceding reign. He was obliged by George III. to resign
his post.

(96) "Notice was also formally given that no persons who paid
their respects to the Prince and Princess of Wales would be
received at court; and they were deprived of their guard, and of
all other marks of distinction." Coxe, vol. i. p. 132.-E.


Bill of Pains and Penalties against Bishop Atterbury-Projected
Assassination of Sir Robert Walpole-Revival of the Order of the
Bath-Instance of George the First's good-humoured Presence of

As this trifling work is a miscellany of detached recollections,
I will, ere I quit the article of George I., mention two subjects
of very unequal import, which belong peculiarly to his reign.
The first was the deprivation of Atterbury, Bishop of Rochester.
Nothing more offensive to men of priestly principles could easily
have happened: yet, as in a country of which the constitution was
founded on rational and liberal grounds, and where thinking men
had so recently exerted themselves to explode the prejudices
attached to the persons of Kings and churchmen, it was impossible
to defend the Bishop's treason but by denying it; or to condemn
his condemnation, but by supposing illegalities in the process:
both were vehemently urged by his faction, as his innocence was
pleaded by himself. That punishment and expulsion from his
country may stagger the virtue even of a good man, and exasperate
him against his country, is perhaps natural, and humanity ought
to Pity it. But whatever were the prepossessions of his friends
in his favour, charity must now believe that Atterbury was always
an ambitious, turbulent priest, attached to the House of Stuart,
and consequently no friend to the civil and religious liberties
of his country; or it must be acknowledged, that the
disappointment of his ambition by the Queen's death, and the
proscription of his ministerial associates, had driven on
attempts to restore the expelled family in hopes of realizing his
aspiring views. His letters published by Nichols breathe the
impetuous spirit of his youth. His exclamation on the Queen's
death, when he offered to proclaim the Pretender at Charing Cross
in pontificalibus, and swore, on not being supported, that there
was the best cause in England lost for want of spirit, is now
believed also. His papers, deposited with King James's in the
Scottish College at Paris, proclaimed in what sentiments he died;
and the facsimiles of his letters published by Sir David
Dalrymple leave no doubt of his having in his exile entered into
the service of the Pretender. Culpable -is he was, who but must
lament that so classic a mind had only assumed so elegant and
amiable a semblance as he adopted after the disappointment of his
prospects and hopes? His letter in defence of the authenticity of
Lord Clarendon's History, is one of the most beautiful and
touching specimens of eloquence in our language.

It was not to load the character of the bishop, nor to affect
candour by applauding his talents, that I introduced mention of
him, much less to impute to him -,my consciousnesses of the
intended crime that I am going to relate. The person against
whom the blow was supposed to be meditated never, in the most
distant manner, suspected the bishop of being privy to the
plot-No: animosity of parties, and malevolence to the champions
of the House of Brunswick, no doubt suggested to some blind
zealots the perpetration of a crime which would necessarily have
injured the bishop's cause, and could by no means have prevented
his disgrace.

Mr. Johnstone, an ancient gentleman, who had been secretary of
state for Scotland, his country, in the reign of King William,
was a zealous friend of my father, Sir Robert, and who, in that
period of assassination plots, had imbibed such a tincture of
suspicion that he was continually notifying similar machinations
to my father, and warning him. to be on his guard against them.
Sir Robert, intrepid and unsuspicious, (97) used to rally his
good monitor; and, when serious, told him that his life was too
constantly exposed to his enemies to make it of any use to be
watchful on any particular occasion; nor, though Johnstone often
hurried to him with intelligence of such designs, did he ever see
reason, but once, to believe in the soundness of the information.
That once arrived thus: a day or two before the bill of pains and
penalties was to pass the House of Commons against the Bishop of
Rochester, Mr. Johnstone advertised Sir Robert to be circumspect,
for three or four persons meditated to assassinate him as he
should leave the house at night. Sir Robert laughed, and forgot
the notice. The morning after the debate, Johnstone came to Sir
Robert with a kind of good-natured insult, telling him, that
though he had scoffed his advice, he had for once followed it,
and by so doing preserved his life. Sir Robert understood not
what he meant, and protested he had not given more credit than
usual. to his warning. "Yes," said Johnstone, "but you did; for
you did not come from the House last night in your own chariot."
Walpole affirmed that he did; but his friend persisting in his
asseveration, Sir Robert called one of the footmen, who replied,
"I did call up your honour's carriage; but Colonel Churchill
being with you, and his chariot driving up first, your honour
stepped into that, and your own came home empty."
Johnstone, triumphing on his own veracity, and pushing the
examination farther, Sir Robert's coachman recollected that, as
he left Palace-yard, three men, much muffled, had looked into the
empty chariot. The mystery was never farther cleared up; and my
father frequently said it was the only instance of the kind in
which he had ever seen any appearance of a real design.

The second subject that I promised to mention, and it shall be
very briefly, was the revival of the Order of the Bath. It was
the measure of Sir Robert Walpole, and was an artful bank of
thirty-six ribands to supply a fund of favours in lieu of places.
He meant, too, to stave off the demand for garters, and intended
that the red should be a step to the blue, and accordingly took
one of the former himself. He offered the new order to old
Sarah, Duchess of Marlborough, for her grandson the duke, and for
the Duke of Bedford, who had married one of her grand-daughters.
(98) She haughtily replied, they should take nothing but the
garter. "Madam," said Sir Robert coolly, "they who take the bath
will the sooner have the garter." The next year he took the
latter himself with the Duke of Richmond, both having been
previously installed knights of the revived institution.

Before I quit King George I. I will relate a story, very
expressive of his good-humoured presence of mind.

On one of his journeys to Hanover his coach broke. At a distance
in view was the chateau of a considerable German nobleman. The
king sent to borrow assistance. The possessor came, conveyed the
king to his house, and begged the honour of his Majesty's
accepting a dinner while his carriage was repairing; and, while
the dinner was preparing, begged leave to amuse his Majesty with
a collection of pictures which he had formed in several tours to
Italy. But what did the king see in one of the rooms but an
unknown portrait of a person in the robes and with the regalia of
the sovereigns of Great Britain! George asked whom it
represented. The nobleman replied, with much diffident but
decent respect, that in various journeys to Rome he had been
acquainted with the Chevalier de St. George. who had done him the
honour of sending him that picture. "Upon my word," said the king
instantly, "it is very like to the family." It was impossible to
remove the embarrassment of the proprietor with more good

(97) At the time of the Preston rebellion, a Jacobite, who
sometimes furnished Sir Robert with intelligence, sitting alone
with him one night, suddenly putting his hand into his bosom and
rising, said, "Why do not I kill you now?" Walpole starting up,
replied, "Because I am a younger man and a stronger." They sat
down again, and discussed the person's information But Sir Robert
afterwards had reasons for thinking that the spy had no intention
of assassination, but had hoped, by intimidating, to extort money
from him. Yet if no real attempt was made on his life, it was
not from want of suggestions to it: one of the weekly journals
pointed out Sir Robert's frequent passing a Putney bridge late at
night, attended but by one or two servants, on his way to New
Park, as a proper place; and after Sir Robert's death, the second
Earl of Egmont told me, that he was once at a consultation of the
Opposition, in which it was proposed to have Sir Robert murdered
by a mob, of which the earl had declared his abhorrence. Such an
attempt was actually made in 1733, at the time of the famous
excise bill. As the minister descended the stairs of the House
of commons on the night he carried the bill, he was guarded on
one side by his second son Edward, and on the other by General
Charles Churchill; but the crowd behind endeavoured to throw him
down, as he was a bulky man, and trample him to death; and that
not succeeding, they tried to strangle him by pulling his red
cloak tight-but fortunately the strings broke by the violence of
the tug.

(98) Wriothesly, Duke of Bedford, had married Lady Anne Egerton,
only daughter of Scroop, Duke of Bridgewater, by Lady Elizabeth
Churchill, daughter of John, Duke of Marlborough. See VOL. I. 8.


Accession of George the Second-Sir Spencer Compton-Expected
Change in Administration-Continuation of Lord Townshend-and Sir
Robert Walpole by the Intervention of Queen Caroline-Mrs. Howard,
afterwards Countess of Suffolk-Her character by
Swift-and by Lord Chesterfield.

The unexpected death of George I. on his road to Hanover was
instantly notified by Lord Townshend, secretary of state, who
attended his Majesty, to his brother Sir Robert Walpole, who as
expeditiously was the first to carry the news to the
successor and hail him King. The next step was, to ask who his
Majesty would please should draw his speech to the
Council. "Sir Spencer Compton," replied the new monarch. The
answer was decisive, and implied Sir Robert's dismission. Sir
Spencer Compton was Speaker of the House of Commons, and
treasurer, I think, at that time, to his Royal Highness, who by
that first command, implied his intention of making Sir Spencer
his prime-minister. He was a worthy man, of
exceedingly grave formality, but of no parts, as his conduct
immediately proved. The poor gentleman was so little
qualified to accommodate himself to the grandeur of the
moment, and to conceive how a new sovereign should address
himself to his ministers, and he had also been so far from
meditating to supplant the premier,(99) that, in his distress, it
was to Sir Robert himself that he had recourse, and whom he
besought to make the draught of the Kin(,'s speech for him. The
new Queen, a better judge than her husband of the
capacities of the two candidates, and who had silently watched
for a moment proper for overturning the new designations, did not
lose a moment in observing to the King how prejudicial it would
be to his affairs to prefer to the minister in
possession a man in whose own judgment his predecessor was the
fittest person to execute his office. From that moment there was
no more question of Sir Spencer Compton as prime-minister. He
was created an earl, soon received the garter, and became
president of that council, at the head of which he was much
fitter to sit than to direct. Fourteen years afterwards, he was
again nominated by the same Prince to replace Sir Robert as first
lord of the treasury on the latter's forced
resignation, but not -.is prime-minister; the conduct of
affairs being soon ravished from him by that dashing genius the
Earl of Granville, who reduced him to a cipher for the little
year in which he survived, and in which his incapacity had been

The Queen, impatient to destroy all hopes of change, took the
earliest opportunity of declaring her own sentiments. The
instance I shall cite will be a true picture of courtiers. Their
Majesties had removed from Richmond to their temporary palace in
Leicester-fields(100)on the very evening of their receiving
notice of their accession to the Crown, and the next day all the
nobility and gentry in town crowded to kiss their hands; my
mother amongst the rest, who, Sir Spencer Compton's designation,
and not its evaporation, being known, could not make her way
between the scornful backs and elbows of her late devotees, nor
could approach nearer to the Queen than the
third or fourth row; but no sooner was she descried by her
Majesty than the Queen said aloud, "There, I am sure, I see a
friend!" The torrent divided and shrunk to either side; "and as
I came away," said my mother, "I might have walked over their
heads if I had pleased."

The preoccupation of the Queen in favour of Walpole must be
explained. He had early discovered that, in whatever
gallantries George Prince of Wales indulged or affected, even the
person of his Princess was dearer to him than any charms in his
mistresses; and though Mrs. Howard (afterwards Lady Suffolk) was
openly his declared favourite, as avowedly as the Duchess of
Kendal was his father's, Sir Robert's sagacity
discerned that the power would be lodged with the wife, not with
the mistress; and he not only devoted himself to the
Princess; but totally abstained from even visiting Mrs.
Howard; while the injudicious multitude concluded. that the
common consequences of an inconstant husband's passion 'for his
concubine would follow, and accordingly warmer, if not public
vows were made to the supposed favourite, than to the Prince's
consort. They, especially, who in the late reign had been out of
favour at court, had, to pave their future path to favour, and to
secure the fall of Sir Robert Walpole,
sedulously, and no doubt zealously, dedicated themselves to the
mistress: Bolingbroke secretly, his friend Swift openly, and as
ambitiously, cultivated Mrs. Howard; and the
neighbourhood of Pope's villa to Richmond facilitated their
intercourse, though his religion forbade his entertaining
views beyond those of serving his friends. Lord Bathurst,
another of that connexion, and Lord Chesterfield, too early for
his interest, founded their hopes on Mrs. Howard's
influence; but astonished and disappointed at finding Walpole not
shaken from his seat, they determined on an experiment that
should be the touchstone of Mrs. Howard's credit. They persuaded
her to demand of the new King an Earl's coronet for Lord
Bathurst. She did-the Queen put in her veto, and Swift, in
despair, returned to Ireland, to lament Queen Anne, and curse
Queen Caroline, under the mask of patriotism, in a
country he abhorred and despised.(101)

To Mrs. Howard, Swift's ingratitude was base. She,
indubitably, had not only exerted all her interest to second his
and his faction's interests, but loved Queen Caroline and the
minister as little as they did; yet, when Swift died, he left
behind him a Character of Mrs. Howard by no means
flattering, which was published in his posthumous works.

On its appearance, Mrs. Howard (become Lady Suffolk) said to me,
in her calm, dispassionate manner, "All I can say is, that it is
very different from one that he drew of me, and sent to me, many
years ago, and which I have, written by his own

Lord Chesterfield, rather more ingenuous-as his character of her,
but under a feigned name, was printed in his life, though in a
paper of which he was not known to be the author-was not more
consistent. Eudosia, described in the weekly journal called
Common Sense, for September 10, 1737, was meant for Lady Suffolk:
yet was it no fault of hers that he was
proscribed at court; nor did she perhaps ever know, as he
never did till the year before his death, when I acquainted him
with it by his friend Sir John Irwin, why he had been put into
the Queen's Index expurgatorius.(102) The queen had an obscure
window at St. James's that looked into a dark passage, lighted
only by a single lamp at night, which looked upon Mrs. Howard's
apartment. Lord Chesterfield, one Twelfth-night at court, had
won so large a sum of money, that he thought it imprudent to
carry it home in the dark, and deposited it with the mistress.
Thence the queen inferred great intimacy, and thenceforwards Lord
Chesterfield could obtain no favour from court- and finding
himself desperate, went into opposition. My father himself long
afterwards told me the story, and had become the principal object
of the peer's satiric wit, though he had not been the mover of
his disgrace. The weight of that anger fell more disgracefully
on the king, as I shall mention in the next chapter.

I will here interrupt the detail of what I have heard of the
commencement of that reign, and farther anecdotes of the queen
and the mistress, till I have related the second very
memorable transaction of that era; and which would come in
awkwardly, if postponed till I have despatched many subsequent

(99) Sir Spencer Compton, afterwards Earl of Wilmington, was so
far from resenting Sir Robert's superior talents, that he
remained steadfastly -,attached to him; and when the famous
motion for removing Sir Robert was made in both Houses, Lord
Wilmington, though confined to his bed, and with his head
blistered, rose and went to the House of Lords, to vote
against a measure that avowed its own injustice, by being
grounded only on popular clamour.

(100) It was the town residence of the Sidneys, Earls of
Leicester, of whom it was hired, as it was afterwards by
Frederick, Prince of Wales, on a similar quarrel with his
father. He added to it Savile House, belonging to Sir George
Savile, for his children.

(101) Mr. Croker, in his biographical notice of Lady Suffolk,
prefixed to the edition of her Letters, thus satisfactorily
confutes this anecdote: "On this it is to be observed, that
George the Second was proclaimed on the 14th of June 1727, that
Swift returned to Ireland in the September of the same year, and
that the first creation of peers in that reign did not take place
till the 28th of May 1728. Is it credible, that Mrs. Howard
should have made such a request of the new King, and suffered so
decided a refusal ten or eleven months before any peers were
made? But, again, upon this first
creation of peers Mrs. Howard's brother is the second name. Is
it probable that, with so great an object for her own
family in view, she risked a solicitation for Lord Bathurst? But
that which seems most convincing, is Swift's own
correspondence. In a letter to Mrs. of the 9th of July 1727, in
which, rallying her on the solicitation to which the new King
would be exposed, he says, - 'for my part, you may be secure,
that I will never venture to recommend even a mouse to Mrs.
Cole's cat, or a shoe-cleaner to your meanest domestic.'" Vol. i.
p. xxv-E.

(102) "This," says her biographer, "is a complete mistake, to
give it no harsher name. The Character which Swift left
behind, and which was published in his posthumous works, is the
very same which Lady Suffolk had in her possession. If it be not
flattering, it is to Swift's honour that he 'did not condescend
to flatter her in the days of her highest favour; and the
accusation of having written another less favourable, is wholly
false." Ibid. vol. i. p. xxxviii.-E.

(103) "It certainly would have been extraordinary," observes Mr.
Croker, "that Lord Chesterfield, in 1137, when he was on terms of
the most familiar friendship with Lady Suffolk,
should have published a deprecatory character of her, and in
revenge too, for being disgraced at court-Lady Suffolk being at
the same time in disgrace also. But, unluckily for
Walpole's conjecture, the character of Eudosia (a female
savant, as the name imports,) has not the slightest
resemblance to Lady Suffolk, and contains no allusion to
courts or courtiers." Ibid. vol. ii. p. xxxiii-E.


Destruction of George the First's will.

At the first council held by the new sovereign, Dr. Wake,
Archbishop of Canterbury, produced the will of the late King, and
delivered it to the successor, expecting it would be
opened and read in council. On the contrary, his Majesty put it
into his pocket, and stalked out of the room without
uttering a word on the subject. The poor prelate was
thunderstruck, and had not the presence of mind or the courage to
demand the testament's being opened, or at least to have it
registered. No man present chose to be more hardy than the
person to whom the deposit had been trusted-perhaps none of them
immediately conceived the possible violation of so solemn an act
so notoriously existent; still, as the King never
mentioned the will more, whispers only by degrees informed the
public that the will was burnt; at least that its injunctions
were never fulfilled.

What the contents were was never ascertained. Report said, that
forty thousand pounds had been bequeathed to the Duchess of
Kendal; and more vague rumours spoke of a large legacy to the
Queen of Prussia, daughter of the late King. Of that
bequest demands were afterwards said to have been frequently and
roughly made by her son the great King of Prussia, between whom
and his uncle subsisted much inveteracy.

The legacy to the ]Duchess was some time after on the brink of
coming to open and legal discussion. Lord Chesterfield
marrying her niece and heiress, the Countess of Walsingham, and
resenting his own proscription at court, was believed to have
instituted, or at least to have threatened, a suit for recovery
of the legacy to the Duchess, to which he was then become
entitled; and it was as confidently believed that he was quieted
by the payment of twenty thousand pounds.

But if the Archbishop had too timidly betrayed the trust
reposed in him from weakness and want of spirit, there were two
other men who had no such plea of imbecility, and who, being
independent, and above being awed, basely sacrificed their honour
and their integrity for positive sordid gain. George the First
had deposited duplicates of his will with two sovereign German
princes: I will not specify them, because at this distance of
time I do not, perfectly recollect their
titles; but I was actually, some years ago, shown a copy of a
letter from one of our ambassadors abroad to-a secretary of state
at that period, in which the ambassador said, one of the princes
in question would accept the proffered subsidy, and had
delivered, or would deliver, the duplicate of the King's will.
The other trustee, was no doubt, as little
conscientious and as corrupt. It is pity the late King of
Prussia did not learn their infamous treachery.

Discoursing once with Lady Suffolk on that suppressed
testament, she made the only plausible shadow of an excuse that
could be made for George the Second. She told me that George the
First had burnt two wills made in favour of his son. They were,
probably, the wills of the Duke and Duchess of Zell; or one of
them might be that of his mother, the
Princess Sophia. The crime of the first George could only
palliate, not justify, the criminality of the second; for the
second did -not punish the maturity, but the innocent. But bad
precedents are always dangerous, and too likely to be
copied. (104)

(104) On the subject of the royal will, Walpole, in his
Memoires, vol. ii. p. 458, relates the following
anecdote:-"The morning after the death of George the Second, Lord
Waldegrave showed the Duke of Cumberland an extraordinary piece:
it was endorsed, 'very private paper,' and was a letter from the
Duke of Newcastle to the first Earl of Waldegrave; in which his
Grace informed the Earl, then our ambassador in
France, that he had received by the messenger the copy of the
will and codicil of George the First; that he had delivered it to
his Majesty, who put it into the fire without opening it: 'So,'
adds the Duke, 'we do not know whether it confirms the other or
not;' and he proceeds to say, 'Despatch a messenger to the Duke
Of Wolfenbuttle with the treaty, in which he is granted all he
desired; and we expect, by return of the
messenger, the original will from him.' George the First had
left two wills; one in the hands of Dr. Wake, Archbishop of
Canterbury, the other with the Duke of Wolfenbuttle. He had been
in the right to take these precautions: he himself had burned his
wife's testament, and her and her father's, the duke of Zell;
both of whom had made George the Second their heir--a paliative
of the latter's obliquity, if justice would allow of any
violation." From the following passage in
Boswell's Life of Johnson, the Doctor appears to have given
credence to the story of the will:--"tom Davies instanced
Charles the Second; Johnson taking fire at an attack upon that
prince, exclaimed, "charles the Second was licentious in his
practice, but he always had a reverence for what was good;
Charles the Second was not such a man as George the Second; he
did not destroy his father's will' he did not betray those over
whom he ruled' he did not let the French fleet pass
ours.' He roared with prodigious violence against George the
Second. When he ceased, Moody interjected, in an Irish tone, and
a comic look, 'Ah! poor George the Second!'" See vol. v. p. 284,
ed. 1835.-E.


History of Mrs. Howard, afterwards Countess of Suffolk-Miss
Bellenden-Her Marriage with Colonel John Campbell, afterwards
fourth Duke of Argyle-Anecdotes of Queen Caroline-her last
Illness and Death-Anecdote of Sarah, Duchess of Marlborough-Last
Years of George the Second-Mrs. Clayton, afterwards Lady
Sundon-Lady Diana Spencer-Frederick, Prince of Wales-Sudden
Removal of the Prince and Princess from Hampton Court to St.
James's -Birth of a Princess-Rupture with the King-Anecdotes of
Lady Yarmouth.

I will now resume the story of Lady Suffolk whose history, though
she had none of that influence on the transactions of the cabinet
that was expected, will still probably be more entertaining to
two young ladies than a magisterial detail of political events,
the traces of which at least may be found in journals and brief
chronicles of the times. The interior of courts, and the lesser
features of history, are precisely those with which we are least
acquainted,-I mean of the age preceding our own. Such anecdotes
are forgotten in the multiplicity of those that ensue, or reside
only in the memory of idle old persons, or have not yet emerged
into publicity from the portefeuilles of such garrulous
Brant`omes as myself. Trifling I will not call myself; for,
while I have such charming disciples as you two to inform; and
though acute or plodding politicians, for whom they are not
meant, may condemn these pages; which is preferable, the labour
of an historian who toils for fame and for applause from he knows
not whom; or my careless commission to paper of perhaps
insignificant passages that I remember, but penned for the
amusement of a pair of such sensible and cultivated minds as I
never met at so early an age, and whose fine eyes I do know will
read me With candour, and allow me that mite of fame to which I
aspire, their approbation of my endeavours to divert their
evenings in the country? O Guicciardin! is posthumous renown so
valuable as the satisfaction of reading these court-tales to the
lovely Berrys?

Henrietta Hobart was daughter of Sir Henry, and sister of Sir
John Hobart, Knight of the Bath on the revival of the order, and
afterwards by her interest made a baron; and since created Earl
of Buckinghamshire.

She was first married to Mr. Howard, the younger brother of more
than one Earl of Suffolk; to which title he at last succeeded
himself, and left a son by her, who was the last earl of that
branch. She had but the slender fortune of an ancient baronet's
daughter; and Mr. Howard's circumstances were the reverse of
opulent. It was the close of Queen Anne's reign: the young
couple saw no step more prudent than to resort to Hanover, and
endeavour to ingratiate themselves with the future sovereigns of
England. Still so narrow was their fortune, that Mr. Howard
finding it expedient to give a dinner to the Hanoverian
ministers, Mrs. Howard is said to have sacrificed her beautiful
head of hair to pay for the expense. It must be recollected,
that at that period were in fashion those enormous full-bottomed
wigs, which often cost twenty and thirty guineas. Mrs. Howard
was extremely acceptable to the intelligent Princess Sophia; but
did not at that time make farther impression on the Electoral
Prince, than, on his father's succession to the crown, to be
appointed one of the bedchamber-women to the new Princess of

The elder Whig politicians became ministers to the King. The
most promising of the young lords and gentleman of that party,
and the prettiest and liveliest of the young ladies, formed the
new court of the Prince and Princess of Wales. The apartment of
the bedchamber-woman in waiting became the fashionable evening
rendez-vous of the most distinguished wits and beauties. Lord
Chesterfield, then Lord Stanhope, Lord Scarborough, Carr Lord
Hervey, elder brother of the more known John Lord Hervey, and
reckoned to have superior parts, General (at that time only
Colonel) Charles Churchill, and others not necessary to rehearse,
were constant attendants: Miss Lepelle, afterwards Lady Hervey,
my mother, Lady Walpole, Mrs. Selwyn, mother of the famous
George, and herself of much vivacity and pretty, Mrs. Howard, and
above all for universal admiration, Miss Bellenden, one of the
maids of honour. Her face and person were charming; lively she
was almost to `etourderie; (105) and so agreeable she was, that I
never heard her mentioned afterwards by one of her contemporaries
who did not prefer her as the most perfect creature they ever
knew. The Prince frequented the waiting-room, and soon felt a
stronger inclination for her than he ever entertained but for his
Princess. Miss Bellenden by no means felt a reciprocal passion.
The Prince's gallantry was by no means delicate; and his avarice
disgusted her. One evening sitting by her, he took out his purse
and counted his money. He repeated the numeration: the giddy
Bellenden lost her patience, and cried out, "Sir, I cannot bear
it! if you count your money any more, I will go out of the room."
The chink of the gold did not tempt her more than the person of
his Royal Highness. In fact, her heart was engaged; and so the
Prince, finding his love fruitless, suspected. He was even so
generous as to promise her, that if she would discover the object
of her Choice, and would engage not to marry without his privity,
he would consent to the match, and would be kind to her husband.
She gave him the promise he exacted, but without acknowledging
the person; and then, lest his Highness should throw any obstacle
in the way, married, without his knowledge, Colonel Campbell, one
of the grooms of his bedchamber, and who long afterwards
succeeded to the title of Argyle at the death of Duke Archibald.
(106) The Prince never forgave the breach of her word; and
whenever she went to the drawing-room, as from her husband's
situation she was sometimes obliged to do, though trembling at
what she knew she was to undergo, the Prince always stepped up to
her, and whispered some very harsh reproach in her ear. Mrs.
Howard was the intimate friend of Miss Bellenden; had been the
confidante of the Prince's passion; and, on Mrs. Campbell's
eclipse, succeeded to her friend's post of favourite, but not to
her resistance.

>From the steady decorum of Mrs. Howard, I should conclude that
she would have preferred the advantages of her situation to the
ostentatious `eclat of it: but many obstacles stood in the way of
total concealment; nor do I suppose that love had any share in
the sacrifice she made of her virtue. She had felt poverty, and
was far from disliking power. Mr. Howard was probably as little
agreeable to her as he proved worthless. The King, though very
amorous, was certainly more attracted by a silly idea he had
entertained of gallantry being becoming, than by a love of
variety; and he added the more egregious folly of fancying that
inconstancy proved he was not governed; but so awkwardly did he
manage that artifice, that it but demonstrated more clearly the
influence of the Queen. With such a disposition, secrecy would
by no means have answered his Majesty's views; yet the publicity
of the intrigue was especially owing to Mr. Howard, who, far from
ceding his wife quietly, went one night into the quadrangle of
St. James's, and vociferously demanded her to be restored to him
before the guards and other audience. Being thrust out, he sent
a letter to her by the Archbishop of Canterbury, reclaiming her,
and the Archbishop by his instructions consigned the summons to
the Queen, who had the malicious pleasure of delivering the
letter to her rival. (107)

Such intemperate proceedings by no means invited the new mistress
to leave the asylum of St. James's. She was safe while under the
royal roof: even after the rupture between the King and Prince
(for the affair commenced in the reign of the first George), and
though the Prince, on quitting St. James's, resided in a private
house, it was too serious an enterprise to attempt to take his
wife by force out of the palace of the Prince of Wales. The case
was altered, when, on the arrival of summer, their Royal
Highnesses were to remove to Richmond. Being only woman of the
bedchamber, etiquette did not allow Mrs. Howard the entr`ee of
the coach with the Princess. She apprehended that Mr. Howard
might seize her on the road. To baffle such an attempt, her
friends, John, Duke of Argyle, and his brother, the Earl of
Islay, called for her in the coach of one of them by eight
o'clock in the morning of the day, at noon of which the Prince
and Princess were to remove, and lodged her safely in their house
at Richmond. During the summer a negotiation was commenced with
the obstreperous husband, and he sold his own noisy honour and
the possession of his wife for a pension of twelve hundred
a-year. (108)

These now little-known anecdotes of Mr. Howard's behaviour I
received between twenty and thirty years afterwards, from the
mouth of Lady Suffolk herself. She had left the court about the
year 1735, and passed her summers at her villa of Marble Hill, at
Twickenham, living very retired both there and in London. I
purchased Strawberry Hill in 1747; and being much acquainted with
the houses of Dorset, Vere, and others of Lady Suffolk's
intimates, was become known to her; though she and my father had
been at the head of two such hostile factions at court. Becoming
neighbours, and both, after her second husband's death, living
single and alone, our acquaintance turned to intimacy. She was
extremely deaf, (109) and consequently had more satisfaction in
narrating than in listening; her memory both of remote and of the
most recent facts was correct beyond belief. I, like you, was
indulgent to, and fond of old anecdotes. Each of us knew
different Parts of many court stories, and each was eager to
learn what either could relate more; and thus, by comparing
notes, we sometimes could make out discoveries of a third
circumstance, (110) before unknown to both. Those evenings, and
I had many of them in autumnal nights, were extremely agreeable;
and if this chain of minutiae proves so to you, you owe perhaps
to those conversations the fidelity of my memory, which those
repetitions recalled and stamped so lastingly.

In this narrative will it be unwelcome to you, if I subjoin a
faithful portrait of the heroine of this part? lady Suffolk was
of a just height, well made, extremely fair, with the finest
light brown hair; was remarkably genteel, and always well dressed
with taste and simplicity. Those were her personal charms, for
her face was regular and agreeable rather than beautiful and
those charms she retained with little diminution to her death at
the age of seventy-nine. (111) Her mental qualifications were by
no means shining; her eyes and countenance showed her character,
which was grave and mild. Her strict love of truth and her
accurate memory were always in unison, and made her too
circumstantial on trifles. She was discreet without being
reserved; and having no bad qualities, and being constant to her
connexions, she preserved uncommon respect to the end of her
life; and from the propriety and decency of her behaviour was
always treated as if her virtue had never been questioned; her
friends even affecting to suppose, that her connexion with the
King had been confined to pure friendship. Unfortunately, his
Majesty's passions were too indelicate to have been confined to
Platonic love for a woman who was deaf, (112)-sentiments he had
expressed in a letter to the Queen, who, however jealous of Lady
Suffolk, had latterly dreaded the King's contracting a new
attachment to a younger rival, and had prevented Lady Suffolk
from leaving the court as early as she had wished to do. "I
don't know," said his Majesty, "why you will not let me part with
an old deaf woman, of whom I am weary."

Her credit had always been extremely limited by the Queen's
superior influence, and by the devotion of the minister to her
Majesty. Except a barony, a red riband, and a good place for her
brother, Lady Suffolk could succeed but in very subordinate
recommendations. Her own acquisitions were so moderate, that,
besides Marble Hill, which cost the King ten or twelve thousand
pounds, her complaisance had not been too dearly purchased. She
left the court with an income so little to be envied, that,
though an economist and not expensive, by the lapse of some
annuities on lives not so prolonged as her own she found herself
straitened; and, besides Marble Hill, did not at most leave
twenty thousand pounds to her family. On quitting court, she
married Mr. George Berkeley, and outlived him. (113)

No established mistress of a sovereign ever enjoyed less of the
brilliancy of the situation than Lady Suffolk. Watched and
thwarted by the Queen, disclaimed by the minister, she owed to
the dignity of her own behaviour, and to the contradiction of
their enemies, the chief respect that was paid to her, and which
but ill compensated for the slavery of her attendance, and the
mortifications she endured. She was elegant; her lover the
reverse, and most unentertaining, and void of confidence in her.
His motions too were measured by etiquette and the clock. He
visited her every evening at nine; but with such dull
punctuality, that he frequently walked about his chamber for ten
minutes with his watch in his hand, if the stated minute was not

But from the Queen she tasted yet more positive vexations. Till
she became Countess of Suffolk, she constantly dressed the
Queen's bead, who delighted in subjecting her to such servile
offices, though always apologizing to her good Howard. Often her
Majesty had more complete triumph. It happened more than once,
that the King, coming into the room while the Queen was dressing,
has snatched off the handkerchief, and, turning rudely to Mrs.
Howard, has cried, "Because you have an ugly neck yourself, you
hide the Queen's."

It is certain that the King always preferred the Queen's person
to that of any other woman; nor ever described his idea of
beauty, but he drew the picture of his wife.

Queen Caroline is said to have been very handsome at her
marriage, soon after which she had the small-pox; but was little
marked by it, and retained a most pleasing countenance. It was
full of majesty or mildness as she pleased, and her penetrating
eyes expressed whatever she had a mind they should. Her voice
too was captivating, and her hands beautifully small, plump, and
graceful. Her understanding was uncommonly strong; and so was
her resolution. From their earliest connexion she had determined
to govern the King, and deserved to do so; for her submission to
his will was unbounded, her sense much superior, and his honour
and interest always took place of her own: so that her love of
power that was predominant, was dearly bought, and rarely ill
employed. She was ambitious too of fame; but, shackled by her
devotion to the King, she seldom could pursue that object. She
wished to be a patroness of learned men but George had no respect
for them or their works; and her Majesty's own taste was not very
exquisite, nor did he allow her time to cultivate any studies.
Her Generosity would have displayed itself, for she valued money
but as the instrument of her good purposes: but he stinted her
alike in almost all her passions; and though she wished for
nothing more than to be liberal, she bore the imputation of his
avarice, as she did of others of his faults. Often, when she had
made prudent and proper promises of preferment, and could not
persuade the King to comply, she suffered the breach of word to
fall on her, rather than reflect on him. Though his affection
and confidence in her were implicit, he lived in dread of being
supposed to be governed by her; and that silly parade was
extended even to the most private moments of business with my
father. Whenever he entered, the Queen rose, courtesied, and
retired or offered to retire. Sometimes the King condescended to
bid her stay-on both occasions she and Sir Robert. had previously
settled the business to be discussed. Sometimes the King would
quash the proposal in question, and yield after retalking it over
with her-but then he boasted to Sir Robert that he himself had
better considered it.

One of the Queen's delights was the improvement of the garden at
Richmond; and the King believed she paid for all with her own
money-nor would he ever look at her intended plans, saying he did
not care how she flung away her own revenue. He little suspected
the aids Sir Robert furnished to her from the treasury. When she
died, she was indebted twenty thousand pounds to the King.

Her learning I have said was superficial; her knowledge of
languages as little accurate. The King, with a bluff Westphalian
accent, spoke English correctly. The Queen's chief study was
divinity, and she had rather weakened her faith than enlightened
it. She was at least not orthodox; and her confidante, Lady
Sundon, an absurd and pompous simpleton, swayed her countenance
towards the less-believing clergy. The Queen, however, was so
sincere at her death, that when Archbishop Potter was to
administer the sacrament to her, she declined taking it, very few
persons being in the room. When the prelate retired, the
courtiers in the ante-room crowded round him, crying, "My lord,
has the queen received?" His grace artfully eluded the question,
only saying most devoutly , "Her Majesty was in a heavenly
disposition"-and the truth escaped the public.

She suffered more unjustly by declining to see her son, the
Prince of Wales, to whom she sent her blessing and forgiveness;
but conceiving the extreme distress it would lay on the King,
should he thus be forced to forgive so impenitent a son, or to
banish him again if once recalled, she heroically preferred a
meritorious husband to a worthless child.

The Queen's greatest error was too high an opinion of her own
address and art; she imagined that all who did not dare to
contradict her were imposed upon; and she had the additional
weakness of thinking that she could play off @any persons without
being discovered. That mistaken humour, and at other times her
hazarding very offensive truths, made her many enemies; and her
duplicity in fomenting jealousies between the ministers, that
each might be more dependent on herself, was no sound wisdom. It
was the Queen who blew into a flame the ill-blood between Sir
Robert Walpole and his brother-in-law, Lord Townshend. Yet
though she disliked some of the cabinet, she never let her own
prejudices disturb the King's affairs, provided the obnoxious
paid no court to the mistress. Lord Islay was the only man, who,
by managing Scotland for Sir Robert Walpole, was maintained by
him in spite of his attachment to Lady Suffolk.

The Queen's great secret was her own rupture, which, till her
last illness, nobody knew but the King, her German nurse, Mrs.
Mailborne, and one other person. To prevent all suspicion, her
Majesty would frequently stand some minutes in her shift talking
to her ladies (114) and though labouring with so dangerous a
complaint, she made it so invariable a rule never to refuse a
desire of the King, that every morning at Richmond she walked
several miles with him; and more than once, when she had the gout
in her foot, she dipped her whole leg in cold water to be ready
to attend him. The pain, her bulk, and the exercise, threw her
into such fits of perspiration as vented the gout; but those
exertions hastened the crisis of her distemper. It was great
shrewdness in Sir Robert Walpole, who, before her distemper broke
out, discovered her secret. On my mother's death, who was of the
Queen's age, her Majesty asked Sir Robert many physical
questions; but he remarked that she oftenest reverted to a
rupture, which had not been the illness of his wife. When he
came home, he said to me, "Now, Horace, I know by possession of
what secret Lady Sundon (115)has preserved such an ascendant over
the Queen." He was in the right. How Lady Sundon had wormed
herself into that mystery was never known. As Sir Robert
maintained his influence over the clergy by Gibson, Bishop of
London, he often met with troublesome obstructions from Lady
Sundon, who espoused, as I have said, the heterodox clergy; and
Sir Robert could never shake her credit.

Yet the Queen was constant in her protection of Sir Robert, and
the day before she died gave a strong mark of her conviction that
he was the firmest supporter the King had. As they two alone
were standing by the Queen's bed, she pathetically recommended,
not the minister to the sovereign, but the master to the servant.
Sir Robert was alarmed, and feared the recommendation would leave
a fatal impression; but a short time after, the King reading with
Sir Robert some intercepted letters from Germany, which said that
now the Queen was 'gone, Sir Robert would have no protection: "On
the contrary," said the King, "you know she recommended me to
you." This marked the notice he had taken of the expression; and
it was the only notice he ever took of it: nay, his Majesty's
grief was so excessive and so sincere, that his kindness to his
minister seemed to increase for the Queen's sake.

The Queen's dread of a rival was a feminine weakness; the
behaviour of her elder son was a real thorn. He early displayed
his aversion to his mother, who perhaps assumed too much at
first; yet it is certain that her good sense, and the interest of
her family, would have prevented, if possible, the mutual dislike
of the father and son, and their reciprocal contempt. As the
Opposition gave into all adulation towards the Prince, his
ill-poised head and vanity swallowed all their incense. He even
early after his arrival had listened to a high act of
disobedience. Money he soon wanted: old Sarah, Duchess of
Marlborough, (116) e ever proud and ever malignant, was persuaded
to offer her favourite Granddaughter, Lady Diana Spencer,
afterwards Duchess of Bedford, to the Prince of' Wales, with a
fortune of a hundred thousand pounds. He accepted the proposal,
and the day was fixed for their being secretly married at the
Duchess's lodge in the Great park at Windsor. Sir Robert Walpole
got intelligence of the project, prevented it, and the secret was
buried in silence.

Youth, folly, and indiscretion, the beauty of the young lady, and
a large sum of ready money, might have offered something like a
plea for so rash a marriage, had it taken place; but what could
excuse, what indeed could provoke, the senseless and barbarous
insult offered to the King and Queen, by Frederick's taking his
wife out of the palace of Hampton Court in the middle of the
night, when she was in actual labour, and carrying her, at the
imminent risk of the lives of her and the child, to the unaired
palace and bed at St. James's? Had he no way of affronting his
parents but by venturing to kill his wife and the heir of the
crown? A baby that wounds itself to vex its nurse is no more void
of reflection. The scene which commenced by unfeeling idiotism
closed with paltry hypocrisy. The Queen on the first notice of
her son's exploits, set out for St. James's to visit the Princess
by seven in the morning. The gracious Prince, so far from
attempting an apology, spoke not a word to his mother; but on her
retreat gave her his hand, led her into the street to her
coach-still dumb!-but a crowd being assembled at the gate, he
kneeled down in the dirt, and humbly kissed her Majesty's hand.
Her indignation must have shrunk into contempt.

After the death of the Queen, Lady Yarmouth (117) came over, who
had been the King's mistress at Hanover during his latter
journeys-and with the Queen's privity, for he always made her the
of his amours; which made Mrs. Selwyn once tell him, he should be
the last man with whom she would have an intrigue, for she knew
he would tell the Queen. In his letters to the latter from
Hanover, he said, "You must love the Walmoden, for she loves me."
She was created a countess, and had much weight with him; but
never employed her credit but to assist his ministers, or to
convert some honours and favours to her own advantage. She had
two sons, who both bore her husband's name; but the younger,
though never acknowledged, was supposed the King's, and
consequently did not miss additional homage from the courtiers.
That incense being one of the recommendations to the countenance
of Lady Yarmouth, drew Lord Chesterfield into a ridiculous
distress. On his being made secretary of state, be found a fair
young lad in the antechamber at St. James's, -who seeming much at
home, the earl, concluding it was the mistress's son, was profuse
of attentions to the boy, and more prodigal still of his
prodigious regard for his mamma. The shrewd boy received all his
lordship's vows with indulgence, and without betraying himself:
at last he said, "I suppose your lordship takes me for Master
Louis; but I am only Sir William Russel, one of the pages."

The King's last years passed as regularly as clockwork. At nine
at night he had cards in the apartment of his daughters, the
Princesses Amelia and Caroline, with Lady Yarmouth, two or three
of the late Queen's ladies, and as many of the most favoured
officers of his own household. Every Saturday in summer he
carried that uniform party, but without his daughters, to dine at
Richmond: they went in coaches and six in the middle of the day ,
with the heavy horse-guards kicking up the dust before
them-dined, walked an hour in the garden, returned in the same
dusty parade; and his Majesty fancied himself the most gallant
and lively prince in Europe.

His last year was glorious and triumphant beyond example; and his
death was most felicitous to himself, being without a Pang,
without tasting a reverse, and when his sight and hearing were so
nearly extinguished that any prolongation could but have swelled
to calamities. (118)

(105) She is thus described in a ballad, made upon the quarrel
between George the First and the Prince of Wales, at the
christening recorded at p. 83 when the Prince and all his
household were ordered to quit St. James's:-

"But Bellenden we needs must praise,
Who, as down the stairs she jumps,
Sings over the hills and far away,
Despising doleful dumps."-E.

(106) Colonel John Campbell succeeded to the dukedom in 1761:
Mrs. Campbell died in 1736. She was the mother of the fifth Duke
of Argyle and three other sons, and of Lady Caroline, who
married, first, the Earl of Aylesbury, and, secondly, Walpole's
bosom friend, Marshal Conway.-E.

(107) "The letter which Walpole alludes to," says Mr. Croker, "is
in existence. It is not a letter from Mr. Howard to his lady,
but from the Archbishop to the Princess; and although his grace
urges a compliance with Mr. Howard's demand of the restoration of
his wife, he treats it not as a matter between them, but as an
attack on the Princess herself, whom the Archbishop considers as
the direct protectress of Mrs. Howard, and the immediate cause of
her resistance. So that in this letter at least there is no
ground for imputing to Mrs. Howard any rivalry with the Princess,
or to the Princess any malicious jealousy of Mrs. Howard." Vol.
i. p. xiv.-E.

(108) Mr. Croker asserts, that "neither in Mrs. Howard's
correspondence with the King, nor in the notes of her
conversation with the Queen, nor in any of her most confidential
papers, has he found a single trace of the feeling which Walpole
so confidently imputes." Upon this assertion, Sir Walter Scott,
in a review of the Suffolk Correspondence, pleasantly
remarks,-"We regret that the editor's researches have not enabled
him to state, whether it is true that the restive husband sold
his own noisy honour and the possession of his lady for a pension
of twelve hundred a-year. For our own parts, without believing
all Walpole's details, we substantially agree in his opinion,
that the King's friendship was by no means Platonic or refined;
but that the Queen and Mrs. Howard, by mutual forbearance, good
sense, and decency, contrived to diminish the scandal: after all,
the question has no great interest for the present generation,
since scandal is only valued when fresh, and the public have
generally enough of that poignant fare, without ripping up the
frailties of their grandmothers." Sir Walter sums up his notice
of the inaccuracies occurring in these Reminiscences, with the
following just and considerate reflection: "When it is
recollected that the noble owner of Strawberry Hill was speaking
of very remote events, which he reported on hearsay, and that
hearsay of old standing, such errors are scarcely to be wondered
at, particularly when they are found to correspond with the
partialities and prejudices of the narrator. These,
strengthening as we grow older, gradually pervert or at least
alter, the accuracy of our recollections, until they assimilate
them to our feelings, while,

"As beams of warm imagination play,
The memory's faint traces melt away.
See Prose Works, vol. xix. p. 201.-E.

(109) Pope alludes to this personal defect in his lines "On a
certain Lady at court:"

"I know a thing that's most uncommon;
(Envy be silent, and attend!)
I know a reasonable woman,
handsome and witty, yet a friend.
Not warp'd by passion, awed by rumour;
Not grave through pride, or gay through folly--
An equal mixture of good humour
And sensible, soft melancholy.
'Has she no faults then,' (Envy says,) 'Sir?'
'Yes, she has one, I must aver;
When all the world conspires to praise her--
The woman's deaf, and does not hear.'"-E.

(110) The same thing has happened to me by books. A passage
lately read has recalled some other formerly perused; and both
together have opened to me, or cleared up some third fact, which
neither separately would have expounded.

(111) Lady Suffolk died in July, 1767.-E.

(112) Lady Suffolk was early affected with deafness. Cheselden,
the surgeon, then in favour at court, persuaded her that he had
hopes of being able to cure deafness by some operation on the
drum of the ear, and offered to try the experiment on a condemned
convict then in Newgate, who was deaf. If the man could be
pardoned, he would try it; and, if he succeeded, would practise
the same cure on her ladyship. She obtained the man's pardon,
who was cousin to Cheselden, who had feigned that pretended
discovery to save his relation-and no more was heard of the
experiment. The man saved his ear too-but Cheselden was
disgraced at court.

(113) Lady Suffolk formally retired from court in 1734, and in
the following year married the Honourable George Berkeley,
youngest son of the second Earl of Berkeley. He was Master of
St. Catherine's, in the Tower, and had served in two parliaments
as member for Dover. He died in 1746.-E.

(114) While the Queen dressed, prayers used to be read in the
outward room, where hung a naked Venus. Mrs. Selwyn,
bedchamber-woman in waiting, was one day ordered to bid the
chaplain, Dr. Maddox, afterwards Bishop of Worcester, begin the
service. He said archly, "And a very proper altar-piece is here,
Madam!" Queen Anne had the same custom; and once ordering the
door to be shut while she shifted, the chaplain stopped. The
Queen sent to ask why he did not proceed. He replied, "he would
not whistle the word of God through the keyhole."

(115) Mrs. Clayton, wife of Robert Clayton, Esq. of the Treasury,
bedchamber-woman to the Queen. This lady, who had the art to
procure her husband to be created Lord Sundon, possessed over her
royal mistress an influence of which even Sir Robert Walpole was

(116) That woman, who had risen to greatness and independent
wealth by the weakness of another Queen, forgot, like Duc
d'Epernon, her own unmerited exultation, and affected to brave
successive courts, though sprung from the dregs of one. When the
Prince of Orange came over to marry the Princess Royal, Anne, a
boarded gallery with a penthouse roof was erected for the
procession from the windows of the great drawing-room at St.
James's cross the garden to the Lutheran chapel in the friary.
The Prince being indisposed, and going to Bath, the marriage was
deferred for some weeks, and the boarded gallery remained,
darkening the windows of Marlborough House. The Duchess cried,
"I wonder when my neighbour George will take away his
orange-chest!"--which it did resemble. She did not want that
sort of wit,* which ill-temper, long knowledge of the world, and
insolence can sharpen-and envying the favour which she no longer
possessed, Sir R. Walpole was often the object of her satire.
Yet her great friend, Lord Godolphin, the treasurer, had enjoined
her to preserve very different sentiments. The Duchess and my
father and mother were standing by the Earl's bed at St. Albans
as he was dying. Taking Sir Robert by the hand, Lord Godolphin
turned to the Duchess, and said, "Madam, should 'you ever desert
this young man, and there should be a possibility of returning
from the grave, I shall certainly appear to you." Her grace did
not believe in spirits.

* Baron Gleicken, minister from Denmark to France, being at Paris
soon after the King his master had been there, and a French lady
being so ill-bred as to begin censuring the King to him, saying,
"Ah! Monsieur, c'est une t`ete!"-"Couronn`ee," replied he
instantly, stopping her by so gentle a hint.

(117) Amelia Sophia, wife of the Baron de Walmoden, Created
Countess of Yarmouth in 1739.

(118) For an interesting account of the death of George the
Second, on the 24th of October, 1760, and also of his funeral in
Westminster Abbey, see Walpole's letters to Mr. Montagu on the
25th of that month, and of the 13th of November.-E.


George the Second's Daughters-Anne, Princess of Orange-Princess
Amelia-Princess Caroline-Lord Hervey-Duke of Cumberland.

I am tempted to drain my memory of all its rubbish, and will set
down a few more of my recollections, but with less method than I
have used in the foregoing pages.

I have said little or nothing of the King's two unmarried
daughters. Though they lived in the palace with him, he never
admitted them to any share in his politics; and if any of the
ministers paid them the compliment of seeming attachment, it was
more for the air than for the reality. The Princess Royal, Anne,
married in Holland, was of a most imperious and ambitious nature;
and on her mother's death, hoping to succeed to her credit, came
to Holland on pretence of ill health; but the King, aware of her
plan, Was so offended that he sent her to Bath as soon as she
arrived, and as peremptorily back to Holland-I think, without
suffering her to pass two nights in London.

Princess Amelia, as well disposed to meddle, was confined to
receiving court from the Duke of Newcastle, who affected to be in
love with her; and from the Duke of Grafton, in whose connexion
with her there was more reality.

Princess Caroline, one of the most excellent of women, was
devoted to the Queen, who, as well as the King, had such
confidence in her veracity, that on any disagreement among their
children, they said, "Stay, send for Caroline, and then we shall
know the truth."

The memorable Lord Hervey had dedicated himself to the Queen, and
certainly towards her death had gained great ascendance with her.
She had made him privy-seal; and as he took care to keep as well
with Sir Robert Walpole, no man stood in a more prosperous light.

But Lord Hervey, who handled all the weapons of a court, (119)
had also made a deep impression on the heart of the virtuous
Princess Caroline; and as there was a mortal antipathy between
the Duke of Grafton and Lord Hervey, the court was often on the
point of being disturbed by the enmity of the favourites of the
two Princesses. The death of the Queen deeply affected her
daughter Caroline; and the change of the ministry four years
after, dislodged Lord Hervey whom for the Queen's sake the King
would have saved, and who very ungratefully satirized the King in
a ballad, as if he had sacrificed him voluntarily.
Disappointment, rage, and a distempered constitution carried Lord
Hervey off, and overwhelmed his Princess - she never appeared in
public after the Queen's death; and, being dreadfully afflicted
with the rheumatism, never stirred out of her apartment, and
rejoiced at her own dissolution some years before her father.

Her sister Amelia leagued herself with the Bedford faction during
the latter part of her father's life. When he died, she
established herself respectably; but enjoying no favour with her
nephew, and hating the Princess-dowager, she made a plea of her
deafness, and soon totally abstained from St. James's.

The Duke of Cumberland, never, or very rarely, interfered in
politics. Power he would have liked, but never seemed to court
it. His passion would have been to command the army, and he
would, I doubt, have been too ready to aggrandize the crown by
it: but successive disgusts weaned his mind from all pursuits,
and the grandeur of his sense, (120) and philosophy made him
indifferent to a world that had disappointed all his views. The
unpopularity which the Scotch and Jacobites spread against him
for his merit in suppressing the rebellion, his brother's
jealousy, and the contempt he himself felt for the Prince, his
own ill success in his battles abroad, and his father's
treacherous sacrifice of him on the convention of Closterseven,
the dereliction of his two political friends, Lord Holland and
Lord Sandwich, and the rebuffing spite of the Princess-dowager;
all those mortifications centring on a constitution evidently
tending to dissolution, made him totally neglect himself, and
ready to shake off being, as an encumbrance not worth the
attention of a superior understanding.

>From the time the Duke first appeared on the stage of the public,
all his father's ministers had been blind to his Royal Highness's
capacity, or were afraid of it. Lord Granville, too giddy
himself to sound a young Prince, had treated him arrogantly when
the King and the Earl had projected a match for him with the
Princess of Denmark. The Duke, accustomed by the Queen and his
governor, Mr. Poyntz, to venerate the wisdom of Sir Robert
Walpole, then on his death-bed, sent Mr. Poyntz, the day but one
before Sir Robert expired, to consult him how to avoid the match.
Sir Robert advised his Royal Highness to stipulate for an ample
settlement. The Duke took the sage counsel, and heard no more of
his intended bride.

The low ambition of Lord Hardwicke, the childish passion for
power of the Duke of Newcastle, and the peevish jealousy of Mr.
Pelham, combined on the death of the Prince of Wales, to exclude
the Duke of Cumberland from the regency (in case of minority,)
and to make them flatter themselves that they should gain the
favour of the Princess-dowager by cheating her with the semblance
of power. The Duke resented the slight, but scorned to make any
claim. The Princess never forgave the insidious homage; and, in
concurrence with Lord Bute, totally estranged the affection of
the young King from his uncle, nor allowed him a shadow of

(119) He had broken with Frederick, Prince of Wales, on having
shared the favours of his mistress, Miss Vane, one of the Queen's
maids of honour. When she fell in labour at St. James's, and was
delivered of a son, which she ascribed to the Prince, Lord Hervey
and Lord Harrington each told Sir Robert Walpole that he believed
himself father of the child.

(120) the Duke, in his very childhood, gave a mark of his sense
and firmness. He had displeased the Queen, an(f she sent him up
to his chamber. When he appeared again, he was sullen.
"William," said the Queen, "what have you been doing?"--
"Reading."--"Reading what?"--"The Bible."--"And what did you read
there?"--"About Jesus and Mary.=--"And what about them?"--"Why,
that Jesus said to Mary, Woman! what hast thou to do with me?"


Anecdotes of Sarah, Duchess of Marlborough-and of Catherine
Duchess of Buckingham.

I have done with royal personages: shall I add a codicil on some
remarkable characters that I remember? As I am writing for young
ladies, I have chiefly dwelt on heroines of your own sex; they,
too, shall compose my last chapter: enter the Duchesses of
Marlborough and Buckingham.

Those two women were considerable personages in their day. The
first, her own beauty, the superior talents of her husband in
war, and the caprice of a feeble princess, raised to the highest
pitch of power; and the prodigious wealth bequeathed to her by
her lord, and accumulated in concert with her, gave her weight in
a free country. The other, proud of royal, though illegitimate
birth, was, from the vanity of that birth, so zealously attached
to her expelled brother, the Pretender, that she never ceased
labouring to effect his restoration; and, as the opposition to
the House of Brunswick was composed partly of principled
Jacobites-of Tories, who either knew not what their own
principles were, or dissembled them to themselves, and of Whigs,
who, from hatred of the minister, both acted in concert with the
Jacobites and rejoiced in their assistance-two women of such
wealth, rank, and enmity to the court, were sure of great
attention from all the discontented.

The beauty of the Duchess of Marlborough had always been of the
scornful and imperious kind, and her features and air announced
nothing that her temper did not confirm; both together, her
beauty and temper, enslaved her heroic lord. One of her
principal charms was a prodigious abundance of fine fair hair.
One day at her toilet, in anger to him, she cut off those
commanding tresses, and flung them in his face. Nor did her
insolence stop there, nor stop till it had totally estranged and
worn out the patience of the poor Queen, her mistress. The
Duchess was often seen to give her Majesty her fan and gloves,
and turn away her own head, as if the Queen had offensive smells.

Incapable of due respect to superiors, it was no wonder she
treated her children and inferiors with supercilious contempt.
Her eldest daughter (121) and she were long at variance, and
never reconciled. When the young Duchess exposed herself by
placing a monument and silly epitaph, of her own composition and
bad spelling, to Congreve, in Westminster Abbey, her mother,
quoting the words, said, "I know not what pleasure she might have
in his company, but I am sure it was no honour."(122) With her
youngest daughter, the Duchess of Montagu, old Sarah agreed as
ill. "I wonder," said the Duke of Marlborough to them, "that you
cannot agree, you are so alike!" Of her granddaughter, the
Duchess of Manchester, daughter of the Duchess of Montagu, she
affected to be fond. One day she said to her, "Duchess of
Manchester, you are a good creature, and I love you mightily-but
you have a mother!"-"And she has a mother!" answered the Duchess
of Manchester, who was all spirit, justice, and honour, and could
not suppress sudden truth.

One of old Marlborough's capital mortifications sprang from a
granddaughter. The most beautiful of her four charming
daughters, Lady Sunderland,(123) left two sons,(124) the second
Duke of Marlborough, and John Spencer, who became her heir, and
Anne Lady Bateman, and Lady Diana Spencer, whom I have mentioned,
and who became Duchess of Bedford. The Duke and his brother, to
humour their grandmother, were in opposition, though the eldest
she never loved. He had good sense, infinite generosity, and not
more economy than was to be expected from a young man of warm
passions and such vast expectations. He was modest and diffident
too, but could not digest total dependence on a capricious and
avaricious grandmother. HIS sister, Lady Bateman, had the
intriguing spirit of her father and grandfather, Earls of
Sunderland. She was connected with Henry Fox, the first Lord
Holland, and both had great influence over the Duke of
Marlborough. What an object would it be to Fox to convert to the
court so great a subject as the Duke! Nor was it much less
important to his sister to give him a wife, who, with no reasons
for expectation of such shining fortune, should owe the
obligation to her. Lady Bateman struck the first stroke, and
persuaded her brother to marry a handsome young lady, who,
unluckily, was daughter of Lord Trevor, who had been a bitter
enemy to his grandfather, the victorious Duke. The grandam's
rage exceeded all bounds. Having a portrait of Lady Bateman, she
blackened the face, and wrote on it, "Now her outside is as black
as her inside." The duke she turned out of the little lodge in
Windsor Park; and then pretending that the new Duchess and her
female cousins (eight Trevors) had stripped the house and
gardens, she had a puppet-show made with waxen figures,
representing the Trevors tearing up the shrubs, and the Duchess
carrying off the chicken-coop under her arm.

Her fury did but increase when Mr. Fox prevailed on the Duke to
go over to the court. With her coarse intemperate humour, she
said, "that was the Fox that had stolen her goose." Repeated
injuries at last drove the Duke to go to law with her. Fearing
that even no lawyer would come up to the Billingsgate with which
she was animated herself, she appeared in the court of justice,
and with some wit and infinite abuse, treated the laughing public
with the spectacle of a woman who had held the reigns of empire,
metamorphosed into the widow Black-acre. Her grandson, in his
suit, demanded a sword set with diamonds, given to his grandsire
by the Emperor. "I retained it," said the beldam, " lest he
should pick out the diamonds and pawn them."

I will repeat but one more instance of her insolent asperity,
which produced an admirable reply of the famous Lady Mary
-Wortley Montague. Lady Sundon had received a pair of diamond
ear-rings as a bribe for procuring a considerable post in Queen
Caroline's family for a certain peer; and, decked with those
jewels, paid a visit to the old Duchess; who, as soon as she was
gone, said, "What an impudent creature, to come hither with her
bribe in her ear!" "Madam," replied Lady Mary Wortley, who was
present, "how should people know where wine' is sold, unless a
bush is hung out?"

The Duchess of Buckingham was as much elated by owing her birth
to James II.(125) as the Marlborough was by the favour of his
daughter. Lady Dorchester,(126) the mother of the former,
endeavoured to curb that pride, and, one should have thought,
took an effectual method, though one few mothers would have
practised. "You need not be so vain," said the old profligate,
"for you are not the King's daughter, but Colonel Graham's."
Graham was a fashionable man of those days and noted for dry
humour. His legitimate daughter, the Countess of Berkshire, was
extremely like to the Duchess of Buckingham: "Well! well!" said
Graham, "Kings are all powerful, and one must not complain; but
certainly the same man begot those two women." To discredit the
wit of both parents, the Duchess never ceased labouring to
restore the House of Stuart, and to mark her filial devotion to
it. Frequent were her journeys to the Continent for that
purpose. She always stopped at Paris, visited the church where
lay the unburied body of James, and wept over it. A poor
Benedictine of the convent, observing her filial piety, took
notice to her grace that the velvet pall that covered the coffin
was become threadbare-and so it remained.

Finding all her efforts fruitless, and perhaps aware that her
plots were not undiscovered by Sir Robert Walpole, who was
remarkable for his intelligence, she made an artful double, and
resolved to try what might be done through him himself. I forget
how she contracted an acquaintance with him: I do remember that
more than once he received letters from the Pretender himself,
which probably were transmitted through her. Sir Robert always
carried them to George II. who endorsed and returned them. That
negotiation not succeeding. the Duchess made a more home push.
Learning his extreme fondness for his daughter, (afterwards Lady
Mary Churchill,) she sent for Sir Robert, and asked him if he
recollected what had not been thought too great a reward to Lord
Clarendon for restoring the royal family? He affected not to
understand her. "Was not he allowed," urged the zealous Duchess,
"to match his daughter to the Duke of York?" Sir Robert smiled,
and left her.

Sir Robert being forced from court, the Duchess thought the
moment (127) favourable, and took a new journey to Rome; but
conscious of the danger she might run of discovery, she made over
her estate to the famous Mr. Pulteney (afterwards Earl of Bath),
and left the deed in his custody. What was her astonishment,
when on her return she redemanded the instrument!-It was
mislaid-he could not find it-he never could find it! The Duchess
grew clamorous. At last his friend Lord Mansfield told him
plainly,- he could never show his face unless he satisfied the
Duchess. Lord Bath did then sign a release to her of her estate.
The transaction was recorded in print by Sir Charles Hanbury
Williams, in a pamphlet that had great vogue, called a
Congratulatory Letter, with many other anecdotes of the same
personage, and was not less acute than Sir Charles's Odes on the
same here. The Duchess dying not long after Sir Robert's
entrance into the House of Lords, Lord Oxford, one of her
executors, told him there, that the Duchess had struck Lord Bath
out of her will, and made him, Sir Robert, one of her trustees in
his room. "Then," said Sir Robert, laughing, @ I see, my lord,
that I have got Lord Bath's place before he has got mine." Sir
Robert had artfully prevented the last. Before he quitted the
King, he persuaded his Majesty to insist, as a preliminary to the
change, that Mr. Pulteney should go into the House of Peers, his
great credit lying in the other house; and I remember my father's
action when he returned from court and told me what he had
done-,, I have turned the key of the closet on him,"-making that
motion with his hand. Pulteney had jumped at the proffered
earldom, but saw his error when too late; and was so enraged at
his own oversight, that, when he went to take the oaths in the
House of Lords, he dashed his patent on the floor, and vowed he
would never take it up-but he had kissed the King's hand for it,
and it was too late to recede.

But though Madam of Buckingham could not effect a coronation to
her will, she indulged her pompous mind with such puppet-shows as
were appropriate to her rank. She had made a funeral for her
husband as splendid as that of the great Marlborough: she renewed
that pageant for her only son, a weak lad, who died under age;
and for herself; and prepared and decorated -waxen dolls of him
and of herself to be exhibited in glass-cases in Westminster
Abbey. It was for the
procession at her son's burial that she wrote to old Sarah of
Marlborough to borrow the triumphal car that had transported the
corpse of the Duke. "It carried my Lord Marlborough," replied the
other, and shall never be used for any body else." "I have
consulted the undertaker," replied the Buckingham, and he tells
me I may have a finer for twenty pounds."

One of the last acts of Buckingham's life was marrying a grandson
she had to a daughter of Lord Hervey. That intriguing man, sore,
as I have said, at his disgrace, cast his eyes every where to
revenge or exalt himself. Professions or recantations of any
principles cost him nothing: at least the consecrated day which
was appointed for his first interview with the Duchess made it
presumed, that to obtain her wealth, with her grandson for his
daughter, he must have
sworn fealty to the House of Stuart. It was on the martyrdom of
her grandfather: she received him in the great drawing-room of
Buckingham House, seated in a chair of state, in deep mourning,
attended by her women in like weeds, in memory of the royal

It will be a proper close to the history of those curious ladies
to mention the anecdote of Pope relative to them. Having drawn
his famous character of Atossa, he communicated it to each
Duchess, pretending it was levelled at the other. The Buckingham
believed him: the Marlborough had more sense, and knew herself,
and gave him a thousand pounds to suppress it;-and yet he left
the copy behind him!(128)

Bishop Burnet, from absence of mind, had drawn as strong a
picture of herself to the Duchess of Marlborough, as Pope did
under covert of another lady. Dining with the Duchess after the
Duke's disgrace, Burnet was comparing him to Belisarius: "But
how," said she, "could so great a general be so abandoned?" "Oh!
Madam," said the Bishop, "do not you know what a brimstone of a
wife he had'!"

Perhaps you know this anecdote, and perhaps several others that I
have been relating. No matter; they will go under the article of
my dotage-and very properly-I began with tales of my nursery, and
prove that I have been writing in my second childhood.

H. W. January 13th, 1789.

(121) The Lady Henrietta, married to Lord Godolphin, who, by act
of Parliament, succeeded as Duchess of Marlborough. She died in
1738, childless; and the issue of her next sister, Lady
Sunderland, succeeded to the duchy of Marlborough.-E.

(122) "For reasons," says Dr. Johnson, "either not known, or not
mentioned, Congreve bequeathed a legacy of about ten thousand
pounds to the Duchess; the accumulation of attentive parsimony,
which, though to her superfluous and useless, might have given
great assistance to the ancient family from which he descended,
at that time, by the imprudence of his relation, reduced to
difficulties and distress."-E.

(123) Lady Sunderland was a great politician; and having, like
her mother, a most beautiful head of hair, used, while combing it
at her toilet, to receive men whose votes or interests she wished
to influence.

(124) She had an elder son, who died young, while only Earl of
Sunderland. He had parts, and all the ambition of his parents
and of his family (which his younger brother had not); but George
II. had conceived such an aversion to his father, that he would
not employ him. The young Earl at last asked Sir Robert Walpole
for an ensigncy in the Guards. The minister, astonished at so
humble a request from a man of such consequence, expressed his
surprise. "I ask it," said the young lord, "to ascertain whether
it is determined that I shall never have any thing." He died soon
after at Paris.

(125) By Catherine Sedley, created by her royal lover Countess of
Dorchester for life.-E.

(126) Lady Dorchester is well known for her wit, and for saying
that she wondered for what James chose his mistresses: "We are
none of us handsome," said she; "and if we have wit, he has not
enough to find it out." But I do not know whether it is as
public, that her style was gross and shameless. Meeting the
Duchess of Portsmouth and Lady Orkney, the favourite of King
William, at the drawing-room of George the First, "God!" said
she, "who would have thought that we three whores should have met
here?" Having, after the King's abdication, married Sir David
Collyer, by whom she had two sons, she said to them, " If any
body should call you sons of a whore, you must bear it; for you
are so: but if they call you bastards, fight till you die; for
you are an honest man's sons." Susan, Lady Bellasis, another of
King James's mistresses, had wit too, and no beauty. Mrs.
Godfrey had neither. Grammont has recorded why she was chosen.

(127) I am not quite certain that, writing by memory at the
distance of fifty years, I place that journey exactly at the
right period, nor whether it did not take place before Sir

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