LORD  BYRON  and  his  TIMES
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The Creevey Papers
Ch. XII: 1834

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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Creevey was no longer in Parliament, but he had a heartwhole devotion to Lord Grey, whose fortunes he followed with intense solicitude and pride. Fierce, then, was his wrath against those who brought about his retirement, especially against Brougham, for whom he could find no more fitting sobriquet than “Beelzebub.” Retrenchment was marching hand in hand with Reform, and among the doomed offices was Creevey’s comfortable department of Treasurer of the Ordnance. It is amusing to find him who had so vehemently clamoured in Opposition for the suppression of patent places, now denouncing as vehemently the action of the Commission then sitting for carrying out that very policy.

Mr. Creevey to Miss Ord.
“Brooks’s, Feb. 12th.

“I dined at the Hollands on Saturday, where I suppose the party was meant to be wits and men of letters, with the exception of Essex, who is neither. Rogers and sister, Tommy Moore, Luttrell, Hallam the historian and Creevey the pamphleteer. When Lord Holland was wheeled in after dinner, he was lodged on my right side, and was as agreeable as ever he could be. I have been quite surprised of late at the endless variety of his conversational matter.”

“Feby. 14th.

“I was walking through St. James’s Park to-day and seeing Lord John Russell mounting his horse at the Paymaster’s door, I went up merely to have a word with him about Graham’s ridiculous conduct in the House last night.* He put out his hand saying:—‘Ah! Treasurer, how d’ye do?’ to which I replied:—‘Ah! Treasurer for how long?’ He laughed and said nothing. Now, as he never called me treasurer before, and he must know if the place is to live only a few weeks longer, he surely could not have addressed me in this way as a joke.”

“May 3rd.

“. . . Poor old Lady Grey† little thought what would become of her money. She left all she had to Lady Hannah,† and she again left it to her son, the young Bear. He, being a very aspiring young man of fashion, has formed a connection with Duvernay the opera dancer, to whom he has paid £2000 down, and has contracted to pay her £800 a year! The dear young creatures were seen going down in a chaise and four to Richmond. Capt. Gronow, the M.P. and duellist, negociated the affair for the young Bear§ with the dancer’s parents.”

“May 7th.

“. . . I thought the Beau looked horridly at the levee; but his uniform of the Blues plays the devil with him. He should be always in red. You will see by your paper that there was a split last night in our Cabinet, between Stanley and Lord John Russell—the latter, of course, declaring for more popular and

* Sir James Graham, Mr. Stanley, Lord Ripon, and the Duke of Richmond had resigned office owing to disapproval of the Irish Church Bill.

† Wife of the 1st earl, died in 1822.

‡ Her youngest daughter, married 1st to Captain Bettesworth, R.N., 2nd to the Right Hon. Edward Ellice, M.P. She died in 1832.

§ Edward Ellice, afterwards of Invergarry and M.P., married in 1834 Miss Katherine Balfour of Balbirnie, who died in 1864. In 1867 he married the widow of Alexander Speirs of Elderslie, and died in 1880.

healing measures towards Ireland. . . .
Tavistock* told me he had long seen this split would come, but that he did not think the crisis was come for absolute separation between the different parties in the Cabinet, tho’ he thought it must come if Stanley and others did not relax. I am for having Stanley severely whipped: it would do him a power of good. . . .

“When I was at Sefton’s to-day he said:—‘I have a proposition to make to you, old fellow, which is that you dine here every day that you are not engaged elsewhere.’ To which I was pleased to accede, and behaved very handsomely by declaring that I did not consider the contract as binding for any year after the present one, without a renewal on his part of the proposal.”


“Our Government was in the greatest danger all yesterday. John Russell’s gratuitous opinion and declaration of secession in the House of Commons the night before, if the revenues arising from the Irish Tithes Bill were not left to the appropriation of Parliament, roused all the fire of those in the Cabinet who contend that such revenues are to be applied exclusively to ecclesiastical purposes. The indignation of the latter party was the greater, because it was understood, and John Russell had particularly stipulated not to raise that question. Stanley actually resigned yesterday, and his bottle-holders are Pighead Richmond and Canting Graham. . . . However, at a Cabinet meeting, Lord Grey having announced his fixed intention of retiring at once from publick life if the whole was not instantly made up, and old Wickedshifts having made some very judicious threats of opposing and exposing with all his might any Government but the present one in its present formation, the thing was at last settled in peace and harmony, and nothing more is to be said about appropriation, till there is something to appropriate, which can’t be for a year at least. . . . Grey told them that the conduct of the King had been so uniformly kind and gracious

* Afterwards 7th Duke of Bedford, eldest brother of Lord John Russell.

to him, and Grey knew so well the difficulties he [the King] would have to encounter in forming a new Cabinet, that he thought it would be very dishonorable to desert him, if it could be avoided. . . . Brougham said to
Sefton:—‘I followed Grey, and I observed that I was very differently situated from my friend Lord Grey—that, while he considered his political life as closing, I considered my own as only just beginning—that I never felt younger or more vigorous—that, from the moment the present Government was broken up, all my occupation and resources should be devoted to destroying any other one—that there was nothing I would not undertake to accomplish that object—that I would attend all political meetings out of Parliament, publick and private, and that from the present temper of the publick, which I well knew, I was as sure as I was of my existence that no Government but an ultra-Liberal one, both in Church and State affairs, would be endured for a week. . . . Of course,’ he continued, ‘you will see my object was to frighten the damned idiots Stanley and Co. from attempting by themselves, or be coalescing with Peel and Co., to set up a Church government; and I think I did so.’ . . . Was there ever such a chap in the world as Wickedshifts? Who do you think dined with him yesterday?—The Duke of Gloucester, and no other man!”

“Stoke, 18th.

“. . . I hope never again to assist at such a blue dinner as at Rogers’s on Friday. Bobus Smith and old Sharpe* were really too—not a moment’s intermission—not even little John Russell could get in his little observations, much less his brother William, whom I would willingly have examined as to affairs in Portugal, where he has so long resided, and latterly as our ambassador. I never was so sick of learning as Bobus and the Hatter made me that day. . . . Our Earl and Countess [of Sefton] have left about an hour ago in a gig, on a visit to the Duke and Duchess of Bedford at Woburn, 38 miles off; having two horses stationed on the road besides the one they started with. Since they went, it has rained cats and dogs,

* Probably Charles Kirkpatrick Sharpe.

and they in a gig without a head! This, as I say to
Lady Louisa, is ennui in fine people tired of being at the top of the tree, and wanting to see what is at the bottom. How the servants must grin!”


“. . . Since I last wrote, our Government has been in a state of dissolution, and altho’ my mind was perfectly prepared to lose my Tower, and I should have borne the loss better than many a richer man, still it was not a very agreeable state of things to write about. Now, however, I believe I may say all danger for the present is over. Stanley, Graham and the Duke of Richmond have resigned to-day. The difficulty has been to make Lord Grey go on with the Government, and to a late hour last night I saw letters under his own hand saying nothing should induce him to do it; but our Billy has forced him to go on, whether he will or no.”

“Brooks’s, May 29th (King Charles’s Restoration
and Minister Charles’s aussi).

“I dined yesterday at Stanley’s, with Johnny Russell by his side, and it was all very well. . . . All the offices were to be filled to-day. Think of young Cole* Secretary of State for the Colonies! Abercromby vice Stanley! Oh dear, oh dear! . . . I continue to dine out daily according to custom. We had a great day on Sunday at ‘dear Eddard’s,’ with our Chancellor in the character of lover to Mrs. Petre, tho’ Lady Grey tells me this lover is dead-beat by Palmerston. Was there ever? I dine with Fergy to-day to meet the Cokes and Abercromby, but not as Secretary of State for the Colonies, for all is settled, and no mention of young Cole. Auckland first Lord of the Admiralty!!! Was there ever? Spring Rice the Colonies! Ld. Carlisle Privy Seal; Mulgrave, it is probable, the Post Office, Ellice in the Cabinet with his present office. I am very glad of this last arrangement, because he is the most courageous bottle-holder Lord Grey could have. I dine to-morrow

* The Right Hon. James Abercromby.

Sefton’s with Brougham only; next day at Praise-God Barebones Fitzwilliam’s.”

“May 30th.

“. . . Very agreeable party at Lady Lichfield’s last night—Duchess of Kent everything I could wish . . . and plenty of ‘comrogues,’ male and female. Well, tho’ our places are all filled, there is no end of tantrums. Durham is furious at not being in the Cabinet. He asked Lord Grey the cause of it, to which the latter only replied it was ‘quite impossible.’ Durham asked who it was that objected, but asked in vain; the fact being that Brougham told Lord Grey he would not sit in the same Cabinet with Durham, and that Grey must make his choice between them. Brougham has been to the greatest degree indignant with Grey at his appointment of Auckland to the Admiralty, the more so as the appointment was made at the suit of Lansdowne. So, according to custom, the said Vaux has saluted Grey and Lansdowne with a literary philippic apiece. However, Sefton says he is dulcified since last night. All the old and new set were at Anson’s last night, and Brougham said to me:—‘Auckland’s is a neat appointment, is it not?’ twisting about his nose in its happiest forms. To be sure, my opinion would be that the hand of death was on Lord Grey when he could place on his side in this Cabinet such a notorious and so useless a jobber as Auckland, at the dictation of such a perfect old woman as Lansdowne.”

“Bury St., June 2nd.

“. . . I dined at Fitzwilliam’s* on Saturday with the ugliest and most dismal race I ever beheld, and yet there is a card from them for a party this day week, with ‘Dancing’ in the corner. They cut the worst figure by contrast with the young Lady Milton.† who has the merriest and most sweet-tempered face I ever

* The 5th Earl Fitzwilliam, who, as Viscount Milton, had sat and acted with Creevey in the House of Commons.

Lady Selina Jenkinson, daughter of the 3rd Earl of Liverpool. Lord Milton died in 1835. His widow married in 1845 Mr. Savile Foljambe of Osberton, and died in 1883.

beheld—or nearly so. A Jenkinson, too, and they are not over lively. . . . You can form no notion of the obloquy that
Auckland’s appointment has brought upon the Government, or of the terms in which he himself is talked of. . . . I was called out of Brooks’s yesterday by Wm. Brandling, who said there was an acquaintance of mine round the corner, who would be glad to see me; and who should it be but the sweet Fanny, looking much more beautiful than ever. We had a long walk, and I was quite enchanted with her. I dare say her gown had not cost a pound, but in looks altogether she beat all London. . . .”


“. . . Well, here is Ld. Carlisle Privy Seal after all, but only as a makeshift, he himself having the greatest possible objection to it. When Sefton told me that either Radnor or Dacre was to have it, and asked me what I thought of the appointment, I said that, as far as I was concerned, I would not trust either of them with half a crown; not from any distrust of their honesty, but from their being a couple of wrongheaded fellows you could never be safe with. Witness, in Radnor’s case, the mess he got into with Mrs. Clarke, and his letters to her in the Duke of York’s case. His having identified himself to the extent he has done with Cobbett, and his childish consultation with me about bringing him into Parliament, &c., &c. Then Dacre is a conceited prig—a generalising, soi-disant German philosopher. Do you remember Mrs. Sheridan asking me how he spoke, and how Sheridan enjoyed it when I said ‘like a Druid from the top of Snowdon.’ Radnor would give a more Radical character to the Government, and Dacre a Presbyterian one, having a very strong personal resemblance to that community. . . . Well; the Government having elected Radnor of the two as their Privy Seal, with much importunity from Brougham, on Wednesday night he accepted; but yesterday morning brought his stipulation, without which being acceded to he was off—‘an equitable adjustment, the duration of Parliament shortened, and the repeal of the Corn Laws!’ What a modest
estimate a man must have of his own importance to prescribe such conditions! Of course the Government had done with him out of hand, and there was not time to sound Dacre before the levee; but
Lord Grey told Sefton he was going to offer it to him last night. Lord Grey was full of his miseries to Sefton—said he had no sleep at night, that he was harass’d to death, and was quite aware he shd. die if not shortly relieved of the labours and anxieties of office. Of this I feel quite sure, that, this season over, he will never meet another as Prime Minister. . . . He will go out, when he does go, covered with glory, and I see no chance of his equal being found in the present circle of mankind.”*


“. . . Dacre, instead of being Privy Seal, had a stroke of apoplexy last night, and fell down. . . .”


“. . . We had all the corps diplomatique last night in Downing Street. The Dino and the Lievens are gone to Oxford to-day to take their degrees. Wellington† communicated to old Talleyrand that the University would not stand him, and advised him to keep away. What a blow upon Talley to be rejected by the Monks!”

“ 13th.

“. . . Your nephew, young William Ord, dares not vacate his seat as M.P. for a seat at the Treasury Board. The young gambler Byng is to have it. Ld. Conyingham Post Master! Abercromby has the Mint, without a salary, and a seat in the Cabinet. What accessions to the Government!”


“. . . As I arrived first to dinner at Paul Methuen’s,‡ and Brougham arrived second, I had him

* Creevey’s forecast was fulfilled by Lord Grey’s resignation in July following.

† As Chancellor of the University.

‡ Created Lord Methuen in 1838.

out on a balcony to myself in no time. I stated William Roscoe’s case as one that he was actually bound to attend to—that he professed to be the patron of literary merit—that
Roscoe’s father’s fame in that department was unrivalled [? unquestioned]—that, moreover, he was his friend, and had boasted to me of corresponding with him to his dying day—that he [Roscoe] had been his principal supporter in our Liverpool contest, and in short that, after a most meritorious life, he had been reduced by misfortune to nearly beggary. Brougham admitted all this, but said he had nothing to give worth Wm. Roscoe’s acceptance. In a short time afterwards he took me out on the balcony again, and said:—‘I have been thinking Wm. Roscoe’s case over, and I have a place that would suit him. They will have it that I must have an Accountant-General for my new Bankruptcy Court, and Wm. Roscoe shall have it. It will be £1200 a year for life.’—Now was there ever? I take it for granted he will jib and fling over both William and myself; mais nous verrons! It will be curious to see what invention he will resort to in order to defeat this gratuitous offer.

“We had a most jolly day and very good company. Mrs. Methuen is a sister of Ly. Radnor, and a great improvement upon her—I don’t mean in morals; I know nothing upon that subject, except that the parent female stock, who was there in the evening, has been somewhat slippery in her day.”

“Bury St., July 5th.

“. . . I am full of the impression left upon me by the sight of that unrivall’d library left by Pepys to Magdalene College [Cambridge]. I believe the exquisite charms that are to be found in it are, to this day, almost unknown to the world. You remember Pepys’s memoirs (published by Ld. Braybrooke, who is Hereditary Visitor and appoints the Master of this college), the manuscript of which I had in my hand; but these are almost trash compared to other contents of this library. There are 5 folio volumes of prints, almost from the origin of printing, being the portraits of every royal or public man, woman or child down
to Pepys’s own time. I could scarce tear myself away from them, and even these are nothing compared to all the other curiosities. . . . Well, you see a new quarter has begun,* and our Government is still in, and I believe quite safe now until Parliament meets again, notwithstanding the spiteful speech of
Stanley last night. All reasonable men think it most disgraceful of him.”

“July 8th.

“It is my constant practice to spend two pence a day in the hire of a chair, or rather two chairs, one on each side of the water in the new and beautiful enclosure in St. James’s Park. So when the enclosed note came after me to-day, with the name ‘Grey’ in the corner and ‘Immediate’ on the top, Mrs. Durham, who knows all my ways, immediately despatched Durham to ransack the said enclosure, and he found me as nearly asleep as possible, on the side nearest to Downing Street. So there I went; and Lord Grey, in the prettiest manner, told me that Lord Auckland’s place in Greenwich was vacant, and asked me if it would be agreeable to me to have it. He said it was not nearly as good as my present place, and that I should have some work, as I had to take care of the Northumberland estates, &c.† He said he had been very desirous that I should have the house, as it was a very nice one, with a very nice garden, &c., but that Tierney had a right to it in his turn as Commissioner. . . . As to the income, it is quite sure to be enough for me, and the respectability of the office, and the way in which it is given me by Lord Grey’s own unsolicited good will, gives the most agreeable finishing touch to my political life. . . . Sefton is to find out from Auckland in the Lords to-night the real value of the office, and I shall know it at the opera.

“I never saw Lord Grey apparently more oppressed with care than he was this morning. He said he had meant for some time past to offer me this office; but that things were now looking so distracted, there was no answering for the continuance of the

* Creevey means that his quarter’s salary is safe.

† The estates of Greenwich Hospital in Northumberland.

Government, and on that account he was for having my appointment done out of hand. He complained bitterly of
Stanley and Graham, as well he might. It seems these two wretches left the House last night, rather than vote against O’Connell.”


“‘Ah, thoughtless mortals! ever blind to fate,’—‘don’t count your chickens before they are hatch’d’—various are the accidents between the cup and the lip. And now, if you want an illustration of the wisdom of all these admonitions, read the enclosed note from Grey which I received about 12 o’clock to-day. . . . It now turns out that Althorp sent in his resignation to Lord Grey yesterday morning; and Lord Grey, in forwarding it immediately to the King at Windsor, accompanied it with his own resignation; so that he was actually out when I had my conversation with him yesterday. A messenger from Windsor arrived in Downing Street between nine and ten last night with the acceptance of the resignations of Lord Grey and Althorp; and either the same messenger or another this morning brought a letter from the King to Lord Melbourne, begging to see him before the levee to-day. . . . Grey and Althorp being out, I defy Melbourne or Brougham, or all the Whigs united, to patch up any more Whig Governments. . . . I have not felt any depression yet, and I dare say I never shall; tho’ I admit it is very tantalising to have been so near a post, and then to be stranded after all. . . .”

“6.30 p.m.

Althorp has been stating in the House of Commons that the Cabinet being divided on the Coercion Bill was the cause of its being broken up. Neat articles they must be to bring in a Bill they were not agreed about!”


“. . . Our poor Earl Grey was so deeply affected last night as not to be able to utter for some time, and was obliged to sit down to collect himself. When he did get under weigh, however, he almost
affected others as much as he had been affected himself. All agree that it was the most beautiful speech ever delivered by man.
Clunch,* too, in the other House, distinguished himself greatly for his native simplicity and integrity. . . . I hope you see Wicked-Shifts’s† declaration that he has not resigned, and never will. He has not seen the King, I mean—to have an audience with him, but he favored him with one of his letters yesterday. . . . The salary at Greenwich is £600 a year, with coals, candles, &c.”

The hitch in Creevey’s appointment to Greenwich arose from Lord Auckland’s unwillingness to resign. This was got over by Brougham, who forced Auckland’s hand, thereby clearing the road for Lord Grey’s old friend.

“12th August.

“. . . I asked Sefton just now how Lord Grey was last night—whether he was in the same depressed state of mind he had been in the two or three preceding days.—‘Why,’ said Sefton, ‘I’ll tell you a story of him last night, and you may judge. He was talking of Taglioni, and, after going over all the dancers of his own time by name, and swearing that not one of them came within a hundred miles of her, he concluded by saying in the most animated strain:—“What would I give to dance as well as her!” This sudden ebullition of ambition, in so new a field for a fallen Minister of State, produced a very natural convulsion of laughter from the few persons present, and from no one more than Lady Grey, who, as soon as she recovered, said:—“This passion in Lord Grey is not new to me, for I well remember that, on the only day he ever was tipsy in my presence, when he returned from dining with the Prince of Wales, nothing would serve him but dressing himself in a red turban and trying to dance like Paripol!”’ . . .

Melbourne and our William are going on corresponding about a Government, and he is to go down

* Lord Althorp. Lord Brougham.

to the
King at Windsor to-morrow at two. . . . The King’s first proposal to Melbourne was to make a comprehensive administration, and he named the Duke of Wellington, Peel and Stanley as necessary parties to such a Government. Melbourne wrote his reasons at length and in detail why he thought it quite impossible that such a mixture with the late Government could ever take place. He communicated, however, the King’s proposal to the Duke, Peel and Stanley, accompanying each with his own letter. Stanley, in his answer, adopts every one of Melbourne’s arguments against such a coalition, professes his unqualified adherence to Lord Grey and his principles, and avows his fixed determination never to make a part of a Tory Government. The Beau and Peel, in their answers, merely state they have received Melbourne’s letter, and that they don’t feel themselves commanded by the King to say more. Melbourne has written to them again by the King’s command to ask what they think of his proposal and what they mean to do, and the King begs them to send their answers thro’ Lord Melbourne. This is treating the great men (that used to be) rather scurvily, I think. . . . I dine at Althorp’s to-day, and to-morrow at Lord Grey’s.”


“. . . Melbourne returned from Windsor to-day with carte blanche to form a Government. They have been at work all morning trying to put the old ship afloat again, with some alteration in the crew. . . . Althorp certainly remains in.”


“. . . Our poor Taylor is dead.* . . . I had really a charming day at Holland House yesterday. Dear Lord Grey was one of the party, as amiable as ever he could be. Lady Holland followed me out when I came away to ask me to come again on Sunday next, which I promised to do. . . . Melbourne has

* The Right Hon. Michael Angelo Taylor, M.P., a gentleman of small stature and moderate sagacity, but greatly assisted to some distinction by his clever and ambitious wife.

been kissing hands at the levee to-day as Prime Minister, and he is succeeded in the Home Department by
Duncannon, who goes up to the House of Lords. Duncannon is succeeded in the Woods and Forests by Hobhouse, with a seat in the Cabinet.”


“. . . Besides Duncannon yesterday at Essex’s, we had Rogers and Miss Rogers, Lord and Lady William Russell and another or two. I have never seen a woman that I hate so much as Lady William Russell,* without knowing her or ever having exchanged a word with her. There is a pretension, presumption and a laying down the law about her that are quite insufferable. Then her base ingratitude to those who formerly fed and cloathed her—Fanny Brandling, the Fawkes’s and others—sink her still lower in my hatred of her. . . .”

“August 4th.

“. . . I am all ashamed to say that I dined at Brougham’s on Saturday, because I am as sure as I am of my existence that it was he who drove Lord Grey from the Government by his perfidious correspondence with Lord Wellesley respecting the Coercion Bill; and moreover, I am equally certain that the driving Lord Grey from the Government has long been the object nearest Brougham’s heart. How then can one dine at Brougham’s one day with all the rubbish of Lord Grey’s Government, with Beelzebub himself in roaring spirits (his servants in silk stockings and waiting in gloves), and then dine at Lord Grey’s yesterday, with him quite knocked down and poor Lady Grey actually speechless—both feeling that he has been the victim of the basest perfidy? Poor Lady Grey! you must remember how often she told me at the formation of the Government, and with her uniform horror of Brougham, how completely she had got him in a cage by having him in the House of Lords. They were both quite sure he could do

* She was a daughter of the Hon. John Rawdon (brother of the 1st Marquess of Hastings), and died in 1874.

no harm, tho’ they well knew his dispositions. . . . Where do you think I dine to-day? With our poet
Rogers, to meet Anacreon Moore and that melodious dicky-bird Miss Stephens.* Can you imagine a greater contrast to the two preceding dinners? . . . Miss Stephens has realised £30,000 by her voice, and brought up and supported with it a very large family of her kindred. . . . Only think of the Beau’s flirt, Mrs. Arbuthnot, being dead!”


“. . . The dicky-bird failed me at Rogers’s—a cold in her pipe kept her at home; so we had only Essex, his daughter, Mrs. Ford, Miss Rogers and Tommy Moore, of whose melodies I had rather more than enough.”

“Stoke, 11th.

“. . . Lord Grey and his family were at Windsor from Monday last till Wednesday, during which the King took him into his own room and had a conversation of two hours’ duration with him, in the course of which he was pleased to say that he was actually miserable since he had lost his services, and he did not see how or when he was to be otherwise. He spoke of Ld. Melbourne as liking him, but that he had no position either at home or abroad to be compared with Lord Grey, and that as to the rest of the Government, they were nobody. When our Billy said Ld. Melbourne was nobody at home or abroad, compared with Lord Grey, he touched the real thing, which these presumptuous puppies will feel before they are much older. Palmerston never signed a dispatch that had not been seen and altered by Lord Grey. Do you suppose he will ever submit to this from Melbourne? or, if he did, what does Melbourne know of it? . . . I wish Grey may let to-night pass without giving way to any vindictive feelings, which I learn from Sefton are gaining upon him hourly. Sefton dined at Talleyrand’s on Friday with Grey;

* Catherine Stephens [1794-1882], vocalist and actress, whose marriage with Lord Essex took place a few weeks after Creevey’s death in 1838.

and by some mistake about the day,
Brougham came in late to dinner; but Lord Grey would not speak to him. Having taken leave of the Government in the generous way he did in the House of Lords, I can’t bear his showing any subsequent resentment. . . . Brougham already chuckles to Sefton at the influence he has got over Melbourne, compared with what he had over Grey; but our Earl [Sefton] is in a mighty combustible state upon these matters, and will, to all appearance, on some early day burst out upon Beelzebub. He considers Grey as having been basely sacrificed by a low-lived crew, not worthy to wipe his shoes, and that the Arch-fiend Brougham has been all along the mover of this plot for his own base and ambitious, selfish purposes.”

The Countess Grey to Mr. Creevey.
“Howick, 18th Sept.

“. . . I have a little changed my mind about this same Achitophel.* I begin to believe that he really did not at that time mean to turn Lord G. out. I believe so, because it was not essential to his interest to do so, not that I suspect him of any scruples. I am inclined to think his own version of it is true. He expected to bully Lord G. and to shorten the session. He afterwards got into a mess, and it cost him nothing to tell a thousand lies. . . . But enough of our triumphs and our feuds. Thank God! as you say, Lord G.’s political life has ended gloriously. . . . We are now settled here for ever.”

Mr. Creevey to Miss Ord.
“Stoke Farm, 24th Sept.

“. . . Melbourne came here for dinner on Sunday, and was off early in the morning. . . . He told Sefton that his real belief was that Brougham never intended to force Ld. Grey out of the Government, and I beg your attention to Brougham’s defence of himself, as made to the innocent Melbourne.—‘It is true,’ says

* Lord Brougham.

Brougham, ‘that I did write to
Lord Wellesley begging him to withdraw his support of those clauses in the Coercion Bill which have since been withdrawn: it is true that I made Littleton* write to the same effect, and my sole intention in this was to shorten the session, that I might have time to go to the Rhine’ (of course with Mrs. Petre!). Now, from the creation of the world, was there ever such a defence—be it a lie or be it true? And then the villain says it never entered his imagination that it could lead to the result it did. Melbourne states his decided opinion that he is mad, and that he will one day, in sacrificing everything for his own personal whim, be sacrificed himself.”

“Brooks’s, 17th Oct.

“. . . Sefton came up to-day on purpose to see the smoking remains of the two Houses of Parliament. What an event! I saw the poor old House of Commons smoking as I came over Westminster Bridge just now. The fire burst out again to-day, and burnt furiously for two hours.”

“Stoke Farm, 20th Oct.

“. . . Our party here have been the little Russian ambassador; D’Orsay, the ultra dandy of Paris and London, and as ultra a villain as either city can produce (you know he married Lord Blessington’s daughter, a beautiful young woman whom he has turned upon the wide world, and he lives openly and entirely with her mother, Lady Blessington. His mother, Madame Craufurd, aware of his profligacy, has left the best part of her property to her sister, Madame de Guiche’s, children); Lord Tullamore, who is justly entitled to the prize as by far the greatest bore the world can produce (he married a daughter of Lady Charlotte Campbell—a very handsome woman and somewhat loose, but as she is dying of a consumption we will spare her); Lord Allen, a penniless lord and Irish pensioner, well behaved and not encumbered with too much principle; Tommy Duncombe, who lost £600 here the two last nights at

* Created Lord Hatherton in 1835.

whist to
Lord Sefton, and who, if he was in possession of his father’s estate to-morrow, would not have a surplus of eightpence after paying his debts. Charming company we keep, don’t we? Then we have Col. Armstrong of old masquerade fame, and now equerry, or some such thing, to the King—a very good-natured man, and [illegible] than all the others put together, which, you’ll say, is not saying much for him. . . . Lord Fitzroy Somerset* told me that Wyatt says he can make Ragland† habitable for £10,000 and completely restore it for £50,000.”

“Brooks’s, Oct. 22.

“. . . Now for Lord Durham and our Brougham and Vaux. You saw the origin of this storm—the scratch Durham gave Vaux at Edinburgh, and the kick Vaux gave Durham in return from Salisbury. They are now got to closer quarters. Vaux has taken the field against him in an article in the Edinburgh Review, which you ought to read. Durham is attacked by name, whilst his assailant is anonymous, tho’ known to all the world. Durham replies publickly in his own name that, if the writer of this article is a member of the Government, he is a liar, or words to that effect. Now my own deliberate opinion is that Vaux is at last caught, and will be ruined; and very likely the Government will fall with him. His going to Scotland at all with the purpose he did—to rob Lord Grey of his fame—was an act of insanity, and the disease has increased since. . . .”


“. . . Allow me to mention to you a curious pint. On Wednesday evening as I was going up to Crocky’s to dine, little Freeman accosted me in the dark, and turned about with me, asking me how I was. I said my only complaint was that I could not warm my feet for love or money. He said that was wrong—the circulation must be defective, &c. ‘Of course,’ said he, ‘you wear woollen stockings.’—‘No,’ said I, ‘I have never done so in my life.’—‘Then get some directly,’ said he. So yesterday I bought 6 pair for

* Created Lord Raglan in 1852. † Raglan Castle.

morning, and three do. thinner to wear under silk in the evening. I am in them now, and such an immediate change I never witnessed. I have been as warm as a toast from the moment I put them on.”

“Brooks’s, Oct. 29, 1834.

“. . . At Stoke we had the Russian again,* an English merchant from Riga, Younger by name, the Duc de Richelieu, Tom Duncombe, Col. Armstrong, Poodle Byng and myself. Whilst at dinner on Sunday the two Colonels arrived, Berkeley and Henry,† with Charles Grenfell, all from Croxteth. . . . Essex is very pathetic about himself, is he not? and very tender about the Greys. It is just seven years since he was all for Canning’s Government, and, like Sefton, all gall against Lord Grey. When Grey came into office this month four years ago, Essex was one of his earliest and most constant toadies, and Lady Grey used to treat him like a dog; so much so that one day when I was there, after he had left the room, Lord Grey said:—‘Upon my life, Mary, you are too bad in your rude manner of treating Essex, and I am sure he sees and feels it.’ To which our Countess replied:—‘I mean that he should see it, because I can never forget the shameful conduct of himself and others to you.—‘Oh,’ said Grey, ‘that is gone by, Mary, and we must forget it.’ She used, at that time, to treat Sefton exactly in the same way, and for the same reason; but lords and M.R’s have great rewards for perseverance in toadying.”

Earl of Essex to Mr. Creevey.
“Belgrave Square, Nov. 1, 1834.
“My dear Creevey,

“How I envy you your visit to Howick; but alas! the 19th of this month I turn 76,‡ and must

* Princess Lieven.

Lord Sefton’s sons.

‡ According to Burke’s Peerage the 5th Earl of Essex was born 13th November, 1757, which would make him a year older than he reckoned.

remain in my chimney corner. Say all that is most kind and affectionate from me to them all. I think the Glasgow meeting has ended well:
Lambton* has only supported his original principles, and Grey’s letter, like everything he says and does, is sure to be just and dignified and kind to Lambton. The operatives, also, deserve great credit for their moderation in all their sentiments and opinions. Upon the whole I think Grey will be satisfied, or at least think no harm has been done. Whether there may not be some individuals in the country not quite satisfied at all that is passed, is neither your business nor mine. Those who make their own beds must sleep upon them. I hope you and others of your party will do all you can to encourage Grey to come up to the meeting. He must not remain out at grass, but show his high-mettled crest and shining coat to throw the Tories into dismay at the very look of him.

“Yours ever,
Mr. Creevey to Miss Ord.
“York, Nov. 2, 1834.

“Oh! Barry, my dear,† your mail is the genuine mode of travelling for us single people, provided it is not that stupid heavy Gloucester one. We were the last mail out of Post Office Yard last night—½ past 8, and such a load of letters, too, and bags as I never beheld—nevertheless I was here, 198 miles, by a quarter before five this evening, was dressed by six, and have just finished my excellent boiled fowl and bacon.‡ . . . I am so enamoured of mail travelling that

* The Earl of Durham.

Mr. Creevey usually addressed Miss Ord as Bessy, but sometimes as Barry.

Nimrod writes of this Edinburgh mail as the ne plus ultra of road work at any time. “It runs the distance, 400 miles, in a little over 40 hours, and we may set our watches by it any point of her journey. Stoppages included, this approaches eleven miles in the hour, and much the greater part of it by lamplight.” The time of the Flying Scotsman on the Great Northern Railway for this journey is now 8 hours and 25 minutes; and she keeps it.

I mean to stay here to-morrow, to play with the Minister, to have an early dinner and be off with the Edinbro mail of to-morrow about five, and so get to Alnwick about six on Tuesday morning. . . . I have been thinking much of the belligerents
Lambton and Brougham on my way down, and I think the former has completely cut his own throat by his speech at the Glasgow dinner, and has given Beelzebub a horse to ride which, with his jockeyship, will carry him thro’. It is not a year since this hair-brained Lambton claimed for himself at his Gateshead dinner the exclusive merit of originating the general Reform Bill; and now, forsooth, he pledges himself to his new allies, the Glasgow operatives, and to all other operatives, that he will have nothing short of household suffrage, &c., &c., which is, of course, a repeal of the present Reform Act, of which six months ago he was so proud. Beelzebub may say now, when he is accused of his gratuitous declaration against going on too quickly with Reform:—‘Why, I knew at the time more than you all put together. I knew that a daring measure was concocting to destroy all our labours, and put the people en masse against the property of the country, and I knew that Lord Durham was to lead this crew. With this conviction on my mind, could I do less than put the country on its guard against the new-fangled reform?’ . . . Durham’s is a truly daring measure, and he has nothing left but to pit the strength of the Radicals—himself at their head—against the property and good sense of the country; and I presume (for there is no telling till one sees) that he will be beat dead hollow.”

“Howick, Nov. 4th.

“A nicer little dinner and a happier one I never had—the ex-Prime Minister and lady, two boys (Frederick and Harry), Lady Georgiana and Nummy* all the company, with dumb waiters. Only think of Downing Street! . . . Last July two and thirty years ago was the first time I ever was in this house. I had just then become M.P. for the first time, and was here early enough from my own election to be present at

* Creevey himself.

Lord Grey’s for this county. I well remember going with him to the county meeting at Alnwick—a very crowded one in the Town Hall. After Lord Grey* had proceeded some way in his address, he said there was one subject on which they would naturally be anxious to know whether his former opinions had undergone any change—namely, Parliamentary Reform. I never shall forget the excitement which this question produced in the audience; still less can I ever forget that thunder of applause and delight when he announced that the result of his experience had been to convince him more than ever of the indispensable necessity of that great measure. Well then, here he is, and this great measure carried: aye, and carried exclusively by himself; for without his character and talents, no man or men could have done, or even attempted it; nor would any Sovereign have trusted any other man to do it. . . . And yet, here he is after all—stranded, compelled by the conduct of his own Government to abandon the concern, and to retire into private life. As far as he is concerned—the prolongation of his life and the enjoyment of the remaining part of it, no one who sees him and has known him before, can doubt his good fortune in being placed in this situation. . . . No continuance in power could add an atom to his fame. He stands the only ex-Minister, certainly in this country and perhaps in any other, entirely spotless. . . . You remember as well as myself the natural anxiety and desponding character of his disposition. Now that he has closed his political life, that early fever has not a trace of it left, and a more perfect picture of contentment and even playfulness I defy the world to produce.”

The remainder of this letter deals with Brougham’s part in recent events, and describes the correspondence that had passed between him and Lord Grey in relation to them. Enough, perhaps too much, has been quoted already to show the bitter

* He was then the Hon. Charles Grey.

feelings against Brougham which prevailed among Lord Grey’s friends. There are mountains of letters on the subject, and it avails little further to reopen forgotten sores.


“Where did I leave off yesterday? At poor Lord and Lady Grey’s believing that Brougham, in his intrigues unknown to Lord Grey about the Coercion Bill, did not mean to get Lord Grey out of office. Why, then he must be an idiot, or something much worse! because he must have been quite sure that when this plot became known to Lord Grey, the latter, as a man of honor, could not remain a moment longer with such perfidious scamps. . . . I cannot help thinking (tho’ I may be wrong) that Lord Grey is not sorry Durham has taken the real Radical line at last, and think it relieves him from any further political connection with him, which has been one constant source of torment to Lord Grey from Lambton’s unreasonable and shameful conduct to him. . . . Lord Grey told me yesterday that the applications made to him for peerages had been over three hundred, and for baronetages absolutely endless. He says he is in great disgrace with Col. Grey of Morrick for not making him one—that his wife came to Downing Street in tears absolutely to implore this favor from him, but he would not. . . . Lord Grey told me that it was one of the first acts of his Government to offer Coke a peerage—absolutely an earldom—and Coke had chosen for a title ‘Castleacre,’ an estate purchased by the Lord Chief Justice Coke, joining Holkham; but just before our William came to the throne, Coke, at a dinner given him at Lynn, had made a most violent speech against George the Third, pointing to his picture which was in the room, and calling him ‘that wretch covered with blood’ (meaning, of course, from the American and French wars), an insufferable speech, particularly of a dead man; so that all the Royal Family were in arms about it. The King put it to Lord Grey whether, after such an attack upon his father, he
could confer this signal mark of favor upon him, and Grey thought not.”*


“So Lord Spencer is dead by this time! Just in time to save Althorp from that horrible position in the House of Commons which his late folly put him into. But what comes of the House of Commons itself? Who is to lead that precious assembly? . . . Stanley would be the only man if he had only common sense and common manners; but I think Spring Rice must be the man. . . . Talking of Lady Howick,† Lady Grey said:—‘I never liked her, and I do so now less than ever. I believe she is clever and has been agreeable; her natural character is to be saucy and pert, but with me is artificial and guarded in the extreme; curious and inquisitive to the greatest degree, and sending to her sister in Yorkshire everything she picks up;‡ which somehow or other comes to me on its return from Yorkshire. Then, if I deny having said it in part or in whole, I am told it must be so, for “Maria took it down in her journal at the time!” which is not very pleasant you know. But Henry is quite devoted to her, and she has supreme influence over him.’ . . . Just as I was in the midst of writing the last sentence, Lord Grey stalked into the great library, his spectacles aloft upon his forehead, and I saw at once he was for jaw, so I abandoned my letter to you and joined him. . . . He had received a letter from Lord John Russell to-day, and I saw in a minute both Holland and Lord John were making offers to Lord Howick of a berth in the Government (in the Cabinet, of course) thro’ Lord Grey; and then we began to talk on that subject in good earnest. I gave my own decided opinion that the Government could not last; that I had always thought so before the late insanity of Brougham and Durham’s scrape, even if Lord Spencer had lived; and that the Government would have broken down in the House of Lords,

* Mr. Coke was created Earl of Leicester immediately after King William’s death in 1837.

Creevey’s old correspondent, Miss Maria Copley.

‡ Much as Creevey himself sent everything to his step-daughter.

Melbourne, with all his merits, being utterly incapable of sustaining it; but that now it would go to the devil at once in both Houses. On that account, I would have Lord Howick extremely cautious in taking office without more daylight, the design in having him being obvious—to pass for having Lord Grey’s support. Lord Grey was quite with me that the Government must go, Althorp being gone, and he thinks it could not have weathered the session had he remained; but he has an evident hankering for Howick being in office, and evidently has a most false estimate of his talents, and of every other property belonging to him. . . . I will stop here, as every day must bring us new speculations as to the result of Althorp’s political demise.”


“. . . Lord Grey had a letter from Lord John Russell yesterday, stating that he had consented to be leader of the House of Commons. Can anything be more condescending? Was there ever such luck for Lord Grey as being out of office before Althorp was off, and Johnny Russell leader? We are both agreed that such an arrangement is horrible, if not fatal. We both agree that he has an overweening conceit of himself, is very obstinate, very pert, and can be very rude—charming properties for the leader of such a House of Commons! . . . Lord Grey says Mulgrave’s pretensions are beyond all bearing, that he never found Grant worth a single farthing, and that Abercromby is a perfect humbug.”

When King William dismissed Melbourne and his colleagues in November, 1834, he laid his commands on the Duke of Wellington. The Duke recommended that Sir Robert Peel should form a Government; but as Peel was absent in Rome, the Duke consented to conduct affairs until his return, declining, however, to fill any offices during Peel’s absence. Therefore until Peel returned on 9th December, the Duke was virtually First Lord of the Treasury, Home, Foreign,
Colonial, and War Minister; an arrangement which gave mighty umbrage to the Opposition.


“Here’s a go for you! The Whigs turned out and Wellington sent for. A letter from Lord Melbourne to Lord Grey, written at Brighton, announces this fact . . . . Now, will this convince Beelzebub that honesty is the best policy after all? It was his perfidy to Lord Grey about the Coercion Bill that destroyed the Government. . . . Then the conceited puppy Johnny Russell, who gave the first blow to the Government by disclosing the Cabinet differences about the Church, thereby making Stanley and the Duke of Richmond resign, that he, having lost Lord Grey and Lord Althorp too, should be fool enough to think that he could lead the House of Commons! Next to these two benefactors, Brougham and Lord John, the Tories are under everlasting obligations to Lord Durham and his Glasgow dinner. . . . When I was here five and twenty years ago, a King’s messenger arrived bringing an invitation from Perceval to Lord Grey to unite with him in making a Government, Castlereagh and Canning having quarrelled, fought and gone out of office. I presume no messenger will come now on a similar errand from Wellington. (After dinner) Duke of Bedford mentions a fact Lord Grey and I were not aware of; viz. that Peel is in Italy. Wellington can form no Government without his concurrence.”


“. . . Melbourne writes that his conversation with the King was a very long one, and that his mind was quite made up that the Government, such as it was reduced to, could never stand. . . .”


Brougham describes in his letter to Sefton (who has arrived here) his interview with the King at the Council on Monday. After referring to the letter of advice he wrote to the King, and applying a profusion of butter to him and his family, Brougham said he
hoped he never should be placed in the painful situation of acting with any hostility to his Majesty or any part of his family;* but as the leader of a popular [party] in this country, he could not conceal from himself that he might, to a certain extent, be controll’d by the measures of such a party: in short—a regular threat, at which Beelzebub says the King seem’d much annoy’d (as well he might), very grave, but very civil (which I doubt!). Brougham writes:—‘I dined with
Lyndhurst to-day, and he says he’ll be damned if he’ll be Chancellor without some security. In the meantime he gives up the Exchequer to Scarlett, who is Lord Chief Baron and goes to the House of Lords.’”†


“. . . Brougham continues to write daily to Sefton letters of a perfect Bedlamite. He says the excitement in London becomes more universal and intense every day; whilst Lord Grey’s letters from Melbourne and others state that there never was more perfect apathy amongst all classes.”


“. . . Lord Grey and I are of opinion that Wellington’s difficulties appear greater every day. His assuming all the offices of State into his own hands, without knowing if he can ever fill them, is a most offensive and wanton act of power. For instance, he has dismissed from their offices in the most insulting manner Palmerston and Rice, without naming any successors, when, according to established usage, they might have held the seals of their offices till such successors had been found. . . . It is clear that this move of the King’s was not anticipated by the Tories, or Peel would have been on the spot. This vesting, or rather assuming, of all the power by one man, and him a soldier and with such known opinions, for a whole fortnight or perhaps three weeks, is giving opportunities for every species of criticism upon such conduct. The Whigs might have died a natural death, as they shortly would, had they been let alone;

* Referring to Queen Adelaide’s overt antipathy to the Whigs.

† As Lord Abinger.

but it is quite another thing to have them kick’d out of the world by this soldier, and to see him stand single-handed on their grave, claiming the whole power of the nation as his own.”


“. . . It seems the offer to Stanley which I mentioned has not actually been made yet.* Peel is to be home on the spot, before a single fixed appointment is made. Great homage to him this! . . . I am more and more struck every day with Lord Grey’s happy appearance, and I can’t help making in my own mind the contrast between him and Sefton. In my estimation, Sefton is by no means inferior to the other in natural talents. In conversation he has much more fancy and a much greater variety of talent; and had his mind taken the same direction earlier and received the same cultivation as the other, he, too, would have been a most powerful speaker, tho’ not as eloquent. But this want of early cultivation now ruins him. Lord Grey spends a good part of every day with his book, which Sefton, from want of habit, can’t do, and he is compell’d, therefore, to exist a great part of his time upon excitement from play, cookery, &c., &c. It would do you good to see me send Lord Grey to bed every night at half after eleven o’clock, which is half an hour beyond his usual time. This I do regularly, and it amuses him much. He looks about for his book, calls his dog Viper, and out they go, he having been all day as gay as possible, and not an atom of that gall he was subject to in earlier life. To be sure, when he read a letter this morning at breakfast, stating that the Duke of Gloucester was dangerously ill, he did say:—‘Well, if he dies, all I can say is, he won’t leave a greater fool behind him than himself!’ But how feeble and gentle this compared with the energy of earlier days, when he told

* Stanley was offered office in Peel’s cabinet as soon as Peel returned from Rome. He declined it, on the ground that, however possible he might have found it to serve with Peel, the fact that the Duke of Wellington had first received the King’s commands “must stamp upon the administration about to be formed the impress of his name and principles.”

Dick Wilson that ‘nothing in life would give him so much pleasure as to see
Eldon hanged in his robes.’”


“. . . Sefton and I had a long conversation with Howick* when everybody else was gone to bed. It is quite impossible that any one could cut a better figure, either for good sense or for good and honorable principles. The Rump of his father’s Government would have applied to him in vain to take office with such rubbish, after their treatment of Lord Grey. . . . Lord and Lady Frederick FitzClarence went away yesterday. . . . He is much the best looking of the King’s sons.† . . . The little wife, Lady Augusta,‡ tho’ about the shyest person I ever saw, disclosed symptoms both of sense and character. She has seen a great deal of the Queen, whom she pronounces to be both sensible and good-natured, but that, after living fourteen years in England, she has not a single English notion. The Queen’s fix’d impression is that an English revolution is rapidly approaching, and that her own fate is to be that of Marie Antoinette, and she trusts she shall be able to act her part with more courage. She only approves of the Duke of Wellington, as being the only man to stem the revolutionary current, having an old grudge against him and having very often abused him in Lady Augusta’s presence, for having turn’d them out of the Admiralty, for his uncourteous manner of doing it,§ and for the disrespectful way in which he always treated the King when he was Duke of Clarence. . . . Brougham, in his letter to Sefton yesterday, let off a madder prank than ever: viz.—that he had written to Lyndhurst offering to be Chief Baron for nothing, by which £7000 a year would be saved to the nation, he being quite

* Afterwards 3rd Earl Grey: died 1894.

† By Mrs. Jordan. The eldest was created Earl of Munster; the remainder received the rank of the sons and daughters of a marquess.

‡ Daughter of the 4th Earl of Glasgow.

§ During Wellington’s premiership he had been obliged to take grave exception to certain proceedings of the Duke of Clarence in his office of Lord High Admiral. First he reprimanded him very sharply, and finally he removed His Royal Highness from office altogether.

contented with his pension as ex-Chancellor of £5000 a year. . . . Whether this is pure spite to
Scarlett, or pure, unadulterated insanity I know not; but I do know how so ridiculous a proposition will be treated. . . . Lyndhurst is civil and dry in his answer (a copy of which Grey has shown me), and says that the Duke and himself will call the earliest attention of Peel to the proposal when he returns. Ld. Grey did not tell me who sent him the copies of these letters, but I take for granted it was Lord Holland, and that Brougham had purposely selected Holland as the repository of these confidential letters, and under the most positive injunctions of secrecy, well knowing it was the best chance for publicity!

“Dec. 3.

“Well, the curtain is about to drop upon my four weeks’ visit to an ex-Prime Minister. As yesterday was a blank day for London letters, Sefton at different times expressed his delight at the prospect of this morning and the news it would bring—very like an indication of ennui, you’ll say. . . . Lord Grey only smiled and said:—‘I don’t expect any news, and I don’t want any.’ At the accustomed hour of ten this morning, there stood a pile of letters on his plate, making, I should think, his legal number—fifteen.* So, having been some time employed in opening them and circulating their enclosures, either by flinging them or sending them on plates to their proper owners, he said at last:—‘It’s funny enough, of all these letters, there is not one for myself!’ A very good picture, this, for politicians to study, and a very pretty portrait of a retired one. The same tranquillity and cheerfulness, amounting almost to playfulness, instead of subsiding have rather encreased during my stay, and have never been interrupted by a single moment of thoughtfulness or gloom. He could not have felt more pleasure from carrying the Reform Bill, than he does apparently when he picks up half-a-crown from me at cribbage. A curious stranger would discover no out-of-the-way

* I.e. the number which, as a peer, he was entitled to receive free of postage in one day.

talent in him, no powers of conversation; a clever man in discussion, certainly, but with no fancy, and no judgment (or very little) in works either of fancy or art. A most natural, unaffected, upright man, hospitable and domestic; far surpassing any man one nows in his noble appearance and beautiful simplicity of manners, and equally surpassing all his contemporaries as a splendid publick speaker. Take him all in all, I never saw his fellow; nor can I see any imitation of him on the stocks. . . .

“I never mentioned to you a specimen of Lady Grey’s moral creed as given me by herself. It was just after Lady T—— had left us; so, being alone, she said to me:—‘I like Lady T——: she is always good-humoured, and she amuses me; and as she never says anything to offend me or those belonging to me, I don’t feel I have anything to do with Mr. Thompson or any other of the lovers which she has had. The same with Madame de Dino and the Duchess of B——; they are always very good-humoured and are very agreeable company; and as they never say anything to offend me, I have nothing to do with all the different lovers they are said to have had. I take no credit to myself for being different from them: mine is a very lucky case. Had I, in the accident of marriages, been married to a man for whom I found I had no respect, I might have done like them, for what I know. I consider mine as a case of luck.’

“Droll, wasn’t it?”

“Tower, Dec. 20.

“. . . Lyndhurst said to some one yesterday:—‘D’ye know where Peel’s letter was concocted?’—‘No,’ said the other.—‘At Brooks’s!’ said Lyndhurst. What a wag. I should say it would do for the present, and until the Irish Church comes upon the stage, or any other similar puzzler. I don’t feel any wish to disturb such a government as long as they keep to such a text. How Goulburn, Knatchbull, &c., are to swallow such Liberalism I neither know nor care. However, our people are all up in arms against what they call the humbug of Jenny.”*

* Peel.

“Greenwich Hospital, Dec. 23rd.

“Our party at dinner on Sunday at Lord Holland’s was the Duchess of Bedford, Duke of Devonshire, Mulgrave, B. Thompson, Bickersteth and some one else I forget. I never was acquainted with the Duchess of Bedford, and since I delivered her of her London Bedford House in 1808, have always been glad not to come in her way. However, on Sunday she began before dinner, . . . and when there was an opening after dinner she said—‘Well, tho’ I have never had a house in London fit to live in since that disappointment, I quite forgive you; and I hope you will come and see me at Woburn at any time you like.’ . . . I dine at the Hollands again on Xmas day—again to meet that lively man, the Duke of Devonshire! But we shall have no want of vivacity on that jolly day, as the Duke of Norfolk dines there likewise. . . . I had two conversations yesterday, each with a Hume—the first, ‘Joe’—the second, Wellington’s doctor whom you will remember. The first was quite positive that Peel could not number 200 supporters. My other friend, to my surprise, turned about with me, and expressed to me his fixed conviction that every attempt of the Duke and Peel to procure a favorable House of Commons would fail.”