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The Creevey Papers
Lord Folkestone to Thomas Creevey, 21 September 1809

Vol. I. Contents
Ch. I: 1793-1804
Ch. II: 1805
Ch. III: 1805
Ch. IV: 1806-08
Ch. V: 1809
Ch. VI: 1810
Ch. VII: 1811
Ch. VIII: 1812
Ch. IX: 1813-14
Ch X: 1814-15
Ch XI: 1815-16
Ch XII: 1817-18
Ch XIII: 1819-20
Vol. II. Contents
Ch I: 1821
Ch. II: 1822
Ch. III: 1823-24
Ch. IV: 1825-26
Ch. V: 1827
Ch. VI: 1827-28
Ch. VII: 1828
Ch. VIII: 1829
Ch. IX: 1830-31
Ch. X: 1832-33
Ch. XI: 1833
Ch. XII: 1834
Ch XIII: 1835-36
Ch XIV: 1837-38
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“Brooks’s, Sept. 21, 1809.
“Dear Creevey,

“I cannot help writing to tell you what a curious scene is going on here. Old Portland is going both out of the Ministry and out of the world—both very soon, and it is doubtful which first; but the doubt arises from the difficulty of finding a new Premier, though both Perceval and Canning have offered themselves. Mulgrave is going too, they say—Castlereagh is quite gone, and Canning too, and the latter well nigh this morning quitted this sublunary globe, as well as the Foreign Office, for his friend Castlereagh on Wimbledon Common about 7 o’clock this morning as neatly as possible sent a pistol bullet through the fleshy part of his thigh. These heroes have quarrelled and fought about the Walcheren affair—Castlereagh damning the execution* of Lord Chatham, and Canning the plan of the planner, and being Lord Chatham’s champion. Lord Chatham’s friends, too, say that he is not at all to blame, that he

* I.e. the performance.

has a complete case against Castlereagh, and further, that
Sir Richard Strahan has made him amende honorable, saying that he meant by his letter to insinuate no blame against him, and that he is ready to say so whenever and wherever called upon to do so.* On the other hand, Castlereagh’s friends are furious too—say that never man was so ill-used, and that he never will have any more connexion with his present colleagues.

Lord Yarmouth was Castlereagh’s second—Charles EllisCanning’s. Castlereagh was not touched; Canning’s wound is likely to be very tedious—not dangerous. In the meantime, every official arrangement is at a stand, or at least quite unknown and the whole thing appears in utter confusion. Mother Cole‡ in vain shows himself all day long in St. James’s Street; the Whigs are thought of by no one; the Doctor§ cries ‘off,’ and the King has not yet sent for Wardle‖ or Burdett. I really think that any one might be a minister for asking for it—Mr. Lee (the spokesman at Covent Garden) as well as another; and if they do not take care, it will come to this. If Nobbs¶ does not, the Mob will, name the Minister, and then—why not Mr. Lee? The scene would be diverting, if it did not look so serious; but, I protest, I begin to think it alarming, considering that guineas at Winchester have passed for 22s. in paper.

“In the meantime, the diversions of Covent Garden go on bravely. The people behave well, and I hope they will beat the damned Managers. The Magistrates there, as usual, behaved shamefully, and endeavoured to excite a riot, but did not succeed.
* “The Earl of Chatham, with sword drawn,
Stood waiting for Sir Richard Strahan;
Sir Richard, longing to be at ’em,
Stood waiting for the Earl of Chatham.”

Charles Rose Ellis, M.P. [1771-1845],created Lord Seaford in 1826.

Mr. Tierney.

§. Lord Sidmouth.

Colonel Wardle, M.P., who led the attack upon the Duke of York in the affair of Mrs. Clarke, which cost His Royal Highness his office as Commander-in-Chief.

George III.

Princess Amelia* is dying at Weymouth, and the Prince is not likely (I hear) to live long.

“I think I have exhausted my budget of news. Remember me to the ladies and believe me—

“Truly yours,