Lady Ailesbury forgot to send me word of your recovery, as she promised; but I was so lucky as to hear it from other hands. Pray take care of yourself, and do not imagine that you are as weak as I am, and can escape the scythe, as I do, by being low: your life is of more consequence. If you don’t believe me, step into the street and ask the first man you meet.
This is Sunday, and Thursday is fixed for my departure, unless the Clairon should return to the stage on Tuesday se’nnight, as it is said; and I do not know whether I should not be tempted to borrow two or three days more, having never seen her; yet my lilacs pull hard, and I have not a farthing left in the world. Be sure you do not leave a cranny open for George Grenville to wriggle it), till I have got all my things out of the customhouse. Adieu! Yours ever.
(950) This account alludes to the insurrection at Madrid, on the attempt of the court to introduce the French dress in Spain.
(951) Squillace, an Italian, whom the King was obliged to banish.
(952) Alluding to the mobs of silk-weavers which had taken place in London.
(953) Lord George Lenox, only brother to the Duke of Richmond.
I sent you a few lines by the post yesterday with the first of the insurrection at Madrid. I have since seen Stahremberg,(954) the imperial minister, who has had a courier from thence; and if Lord Rochford(955) has not sent one, you will not be sorry to know more particulars. The mob disarmed the Invalids; stopped all coaches, to prevent Squillaci’s flight; and meeting the Duke de Medina Celi, forced him and the Duke d’Arcos to carry their demands to the King. His most frightened Majesty granted them directly; on which his highness the people despatched a monk with their demands in writing, couched in four articles; the diminution of the gabel on bread and oil; the revocation of the ordonnance on hats and cloaks; the banishment of Squillaci; and the abolition of some other tax, I don’t know what. The King signed all; yet was still forced to appear at a balcony, and promise to observe what he had granted. Squillaci was sent with an escort to Carthagena, to embark for Naples, and the first commissioner of the treasury appointed to succeed him; which does not look much like observation of the conditions. Some say Ensenada is recalled, and that Grimaldi is in no good odour with the people. If the latter and Squillaci are dismissed, we get rid of two enemies.