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The Creevey Papers
Charles Callis Western to Thomas Creevey, 17 February 1816

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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“House of Commons, Feb. 17, 1816.

“. . . As to the general proceedings of the Opposition, I can say little. There is no superior mind amongst us; great power of speaking, faculty of perplexing, irritation and complaints, but no supereminent power to strike out a line of policy, and to command the confidence of the country. Brougham has shown his powers rather successfully, and exhibits some prudence in his plans of attack; but I cannot discern that superiority of judgment and of view (if I may so express myself) which is the grand desideratum. Tierney is as expert, narrow and wrong as ever; Ponsonby as inefficient; Horner as sonorous and eloquent, I must say, but I cannot see anything in him, say what they will, though he certainly speaks powerfully. A little honest, excellent party are as warm as ever, and only want a good leader to be admirable. Grenvilles and Foxites splitting—all manner of people going their own way. As to foreign policy I came to a conclusion that the Bourbons cannot keep their place, and that their proceedings are abominable, as I told you in a letter from Paris; and then what may happen no man can calculate. If they had any wisdom or firmness, they were safe, but they must kick the thing over.


“In regard to our internal—Agriculture, &c., is getting into a state of despair absolutely and distraction. . . . I assure you the landed people are getting desperate; the universality of ruin among them, or distress bordering on it, is absolutely unparallel’d, and at such a moment the sinking fund is not to be touched for the world, says Horner—no not a shilling of it: and yet—taxes to be taken off, rents to come down, cheap corn, cheap labour—how can a man talk of such impossibilities? The interests of all debts and sinking fund together amount to
Establishment 29,000,000
Now, cut the Establishment ever so low, we shall have four times as much to raise as before the war. It is not to be done out of the same rents, &c., &c. It is absolute madness to talk of it. . . . By the bye—there never was a moment for the exertion of yr. talents in the job-oversetting way, and fighting every shilling of expenditure. This is the time, never before equalled. They cannot resist on these points, and the carrying them is valuable beyond measure, prospectively as well as immediately. Whenever you blow one jobb fairly out of the water, it presents a hundred others, and this is the moment!”