George Selwyn: His Letters and His Life eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 418 pages of information about George Selwyn.

Crawford was giving himself great airs the other day on having taken Longchamp, the man who keeps the rooms at Newmarket, into his service as cook, but on enquiry it appeared that he had taken one of his brothers:  the Fish was unspeakably mortified to find that his cook was not a man of so great celebrity as he had imagined, and gave his first dinner yesterday with a determination to condemn the cook’s performance, whether good or bad.  I am very ill qualified to tell you the scandalous history of fine ladies, not having been at one assembly this winter. . . .

Lord Salisbury sacrifices his whole time and fortune to Hertfordshire popularity, and six years hence may perhaps reap the reward of his labours by bringing in a Member for the county, after an expensive contest. . . .

Lord Morpeth looks remarkably well:  I hope George’s fondness will not spoil him, for he is the prettiest boy I ever saw.

(189) See letter of Feb. 19, 1782:  “Young Pitt has formed a society of young Ministers, . . .” and note (204).

(190) See letter of Feb. 19, 1782 below:  “Weltie’s Club is going to give a masquerade . . .” and note (203).


Fox’s political principles—­The fifth Duke of Bedford—­A little dinner—­A debate in the Commons—­The attack on Lord George Germaine —­Beckford—­An evening at Brooks’s—­Pitt and his friends—­Possible changes in the Cabinet—­Faro at White’s—­A story of the Duke of Richmond—­An address to the King—­A levee—­Play and politics at Brooks’s—­Government and the Opposition—­Selwyn and his offices—­The position of the King—­Fears of change of administration—­The King’s objections to Fox—­Probable debates—­Political prospects—­Debates and divisions—­The fate of the King’s friends—­Illness of Lord Morpeth—­Annoyance of Selwyn at the state of affairs—­Fox and Selwyn—­Fall of Lord North—­A new Ministry—­Official changes—­Fox and Carlisle—­Carlisle’s position—­Morpeth and Mie Mie.

“The year 1782 is memorable for the fall of Lord North.  It was more than the end of a Ministry, to a great extent it was the end of the system of personal government by the sovereign.”  “The King,” wrote Selwyn, on March 27th, “will have no more personal friends, as Lord Hertford says; there will be no opposition to that in this new Government, what a cipher his Majesty will be you may guess.”  Selwyn had no great respect for the King, and not much liking for his minister, Lord North.  “I see him in no light, but that of a Minister, and in that I see him full of defects, and of all men I ever yet sate down to dinner with the most disagreeable.  But he is so, in part from a scholastic, puritanical education, to which has been superadded the flattery of University parsons, led captains, and Treasury dependants.  Without this, he would have been a pleasant companion.  He has parts, information, and a good share of real wit, and (is), I believe, not an ill-tempered man by any means.  But with all this, he has un commerce qui me rebute.  As to what he says, or promises, it is sur la foi de Ministre and credat Judeus, but I never will.” (May 15, 1781.)

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George Selwyn: His Letters and His Life from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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