I write, because I ought, and because I have promised you I would, and because I have an opportunity by Monsieur de Lillebonne, and in spite of a better reason for being silent, which is, that I have nothing to say. People marry, die, and are promoted here about whom neither you nor I care a straw. No, truly, and I am heartily tired of them, as you may believe when I am preparing to return. There is a man in the next room actually nailing my boxes; yet it will be the beginning of April before I am at home. I have not had so much as a cold in all this Siberian winter, and I will not venture the tempting the gout by lying in a bad inn, till the weather is warmer. I wish, too, to see a few leaves out at Versailles, etc. If I stayed till August I could not see many; for there is not a tree for twenty miles, that is not hacked and hewed, till it looks like the stumps that beggars thrust into coaches to excite charity and miscarriages.
I am going this evening in search of Madame Roland; I doubt we shall both miss each other’s lilies and roses: she may have got some pionies in their room, but mine are replaced with crocuses.
I love Lord Harcourt for his civility, to you; and I would fain see you situated under the greenwood-tree, even by a compromise. You may imagine I am pleased with the defeat, hisses, and mortification of George Grenville, and The more by the disappointment it has occasioned here. If you have a mind to vex them thoroughly, you must make Mr. Pitt minister.(945) They have not forgot him, whatever we have done.
The King has suddenly been here this morning to hold a lit de justice: I don’t yet know the particulars, except that it was occasioned by some bold remonstrances of the Parliament on the subject of That of Bretagne. Louis told me when I waked, that the Duke de Chevreuil, the governor of Paris, was just gone by in great state. I long to chat with Mr. Chute and you in the blue room at Strawberry: though I have little to write, I have a great deal to say. How do you like his new house? has he no gout? Are your cousins Cortez and Pizarro heartily mortified that they are not to roast and plunder the Americans? Is Goody Carlisle Disappointed at not being appointed grand inquisitor? Adieu! I will not seal this till I have seen or missed Madame Roland. Yours ever.
P. S. I have been prevented going to madame Roland, and defer giving an account of her by this letter.
(945) Mr. Gerard Hamilton, in a letter to Mr. Calcraft, of the 7th, says:—“Grenville and the Duke of Bedford’s people continue to oppose, in every stage, the passage of the bill for the repeal of the Stamp-act. The reports of the day are, that Mr. Pitt will go into the House of lords, and form an arrangement, which he will countenance."-E.