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A Memoir of the Reverend Sydney Smith
Letters 1820
Sydney Smith to Edward Davenport, 19 November 1820

Author's Preface
Chapter I
Chapter II
Chapter III
Chapter IV
Chapter V
Chapter VI
Chapter VII
Chapter VIII
Chapter IX
Chapter X
Chapter XI
Chapter XII
Editor’s Preface
Letters 1801
Letters 1802
Letters 1803
Letters 1804
Letters 1805
Letters 1806
Letters 1807
Letters 1808
Letters 1809
Letters 1810
Letters 1811
Letters 1812
Letters 1813
Letters 1814
Letters 1815
Letters 1816
Letters 1817
Letters 1818
Letters 1819
Letters 1820
Letters 1821
Letters 1822
Letters 1823
Letters 1824
Letters 1825
Letters 1826
Letters 1827
Letters 1828
Letters 1829
Letters 1830
Letters 1831
Letters 1832
Letters 1833
Letters 1834
Letters 1835
Letters 1836
Letters 1837
Letters 1838
Letters 1839
Letters 1840
Letters 1841
Letters 1842
Letters 1843
Letters 1844
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Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
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Foston, Nov. 19th, 1820.
Dear Davenport,

The City of York have met and passed resolutions to address for a change of Ministers. I have not heard of any proposal for a county meeting, nor can I think that anything has yet been done which will turn Ministers out of office; almost all who supported them before will continue to support them; the greater part of their friends who voted against them thought the Queen guilty, and almost all justified Ministers in beginning the process. The case may be different if they make it a point of honour to withhold her just rights from the Queen, or to prevent you or me from
praying for her in public. Upon these points I have no doubt they will be defeated; but if they have the good sense to see that they are beaten, and not to make a stand for the baggage-wagons when they have lost the field, they may remain Ministers as long as Cheshire makes cheeses. I need not say to you that I am heartily glad the Queen is acquitted.

As for the virtue of the lady, you laymen must decide upon it. The style of manners she has adopted does not exactly tally with that of holy women in the days that are gone; but let us be charitable, and hope for the best.

The business of the Ministry is surely to prorogue Parliament for as long a time as possible. Some new whale may be in sight by that time.

Ever yours, dear Davenport,
Sydney Smith.

Read, if you have not read, all Horace Walpole’s letters, wherever you can find them;—the best wit ever published in the shape of letters. Marvel with me at the fine and spirited things in ‘Anastasius;’ they are, it is true, cemented together by a great deal of dull matter.