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observations, which, however, the repeated vices of the age have in the performance of duty, rendered imperiously necessary. To do justice to certain important subjects, line must be upon line, and precept upon precept.
I hope I shall be excused adding, (the reflection is not without satisfaction)—That it is not impossible after my course in this stage of existence shall be finished, this work may be referred to for many valuable documents; as a protest against the corruptions of the times, and as a defence of those principles which are of the last importance to individual and national happiness.
In parting with my readers, the majority of whom I consider as friends, partial to my general opinions and to the style in which I have expressed them, it cannot excite surprise if I am sensibly affected ; I beg leave to take my farewell in the language of some of our great moralists, who have expressed themselves on similar occasions, so much better than it is possible for me to do, that I shall not make the attempt.
“ There are few things not purely evil, of which we can say “ without some emotion of uneasiness, this is the last ! Even “ those who never could agree together, shed tears when mutual “ discontent has determined them to final separation. Of a place “which has been frequently visited though without pleasure, the last “ look is taken with heaviness of heart”. *
“ Time who is now dating my last paper, will shortly moulder “ the hand that is now writing it in the dust, and still the breast “ that now throbs at the reflection : but let not this be read as “ something that relates only to another; for a few years only can "divide the eye that is now reading from the band that has written. “ This awful truth, however obvious, and however reiterated, is
yet frequently forgotten; for surely, if we did not lose our re“ membrance or at least our sensibility, that view would always
predominate in our lives, wbich alone can afford us comfort when we die.”+
BENJAMIN FLOWER. Harlow, July 29, 1811.
* Dr. Johnson's Idler, Vol. II. No. 103. † Dr. Hawkesworth's Adventurer, Vol. IV. No. 140.
His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales has at length assumed
IS the regal authority in the mode provided by the two houses of parliainent. From the long debates on this subject it was evident, even to the most common observer, that the majority of the two principal parties, the administration and the opposition, took the part they judged the best calculated to promote their own interests. The former, tremblingly alive at the idea of losing their places, made use of every means in their power to delay the dreadful day on which they would be compelled to resign, and endeavoured by their restrictions on the government of the Regent, to deprive their successors of a considerable portion of that influence, in which it seems it was agreed by both parties, the strength of government, that is of their favourite mode of govern. ment, principally consists.
Judging from existing circumstances, it appears that the Prince Regent has been somewhat puzzled as to the manner in which he should exercise the important trust vested in him by the represen. tative bodies of the people. It was generally supposed, although we all along entertained suspicions on the subject, that his royal highness would choose an entire new set of counsellors. It appears that Lord HOLLAND had been favoured with frequent and long conferences with his royal highness, and it was supposed by many that his lordship would occupy the first place in the new administration ; but previous to the final settlement of the regency, the public were informed by the editors of the daily prints which are supposed to be the channels of authentic intelligence from the opposition quarter, that Lords GRENVILLB, and GREY had within a very few days of the installation of the Regent, received his royal highness's com mands to form a list of members for a new administration. These commands were, however, shortly revoked, and a letter from his royal bighness to Mr. Perceval announced to the latter, his resolu
tion to make no change for the present in the counsellors chosen by his royal father.
There has been much speculation on the reasons which induced his royal highness to act so contrary to the ardent hopes and *expectations of many who call themselves his friends : it has been hinted, that considerable difficulties lay in the way of forming an administration which should combine the strength of the different leaders of opposition. That there is a wide difference between those who are usually termed the leaders, we both hope and believe, unless some of the noble lords and right hon. gentlemen who have rendered themselves tolerably notorious for perseverance in erroneous principles, or for apostacy from right principles, have at length become convinced of the absolute necessity of adopting a system of radical reforın, having for its foundation a reform in the house of Commons, by the adoption of which system, that corrupt influence which unhappily for the people of this country, and indeed for the people of Europe in general, has so long been the ruling principle, the main spring of action of the different adninistrations which have had the management of our national affairs.
Ainidst the various contradictory opinions and speculations of which the public prints have recently been so fruitful, there are two things of which we may be tolerably certain. First-That the Prince Regent has no confidence in the men who have so long possessed the reins of government; and—Secondly—That he is anxious to be relieved from his present aukward situation. In his letter to Mr. Perceval announcing his determination to retain the present ministers in his service, he “explicitly declares, that the • irresistible impulse of filial duty and affection to his beloved and
afflicted father, leads him to dread that any act of the Regent
might, in the smallest degree, have the effect of iuterfering with “the progress of his sovereign's recovery: and that this considera'« tion ALONĘ dictates the, determination now communicated to “ Mr. Perceval.”- We most siucerely hope that this language is not misunderstood by the people in general, but that they rightly interpret it as containing an unequivocal avowal of disapprobation of the general system adopted by ministers, and of a determination on the part of the Regent, as soon as prudence, and personal affection to his royal father will allow, to make an entire change, not only of men, but of measures. Such being the settled opinion of his royal lighness, the people, even amidst their various complicated difficulties and distresses, the natural effects of the system so long and so obstinately persevered in, will, doubtless, do justice to the motives of his royal higliness, and make all possible allowance for language and conduct on his part which may seem to imply acquiescence in the measures of an administration, whose general
system he must regard with mingled sensations of indignation and contempt. A complete change of adıninistration must, in the preseut situation of affairs have been attended with numberless difficulties. Ministers, clinging to their places, have by their dilatory measures in settling the regency, most unnecessarily and mischievously deprived the nation of a constitutional executive authority for the , space of three months. Much technical business demands imme-, diate dispatch, and it is understood, fully occupies the time and attention of the Regent. It is impossible that a new administration could have been settled in their places in less than a month : many changes, removals, re-elections in the house of Commons must necessarily have taken place; to say nothing of the jarring principles which, notwithstanding the boast of union in the opposition prints, it is pretty well understood subsists between the leaders of the OUTS, to reconcile which must have been attended with peculiar difficulty. How then was it possible for the Regent to attend af the same time to the mass of national business before him, and to the formation of an entire new administration?
His royal bighness must likewise in common candour obtain full credit for the grand motive he has assigned, “duty and affection “ to his royal parent." What bas been the state of the latter for this month past? Although several of the bulletins signed by his Majesty's physicians are intelligible to no one but themselves; although a common mind cannot comprehend how “his Majesty “proceeds very favourably in his recovery,” when at the same time “there is little variation in his disorder from day to day," (Bulletin Feb. 20.) yet the general language of these diurnal billets, give the public reason to expect that the period of the recovery of his Majesty is at no great distance. Indeed the ministerial prints detail various circumstances which tend to inspire the country with extraordinary hopes on this important occasion! They positively assure us, that favourable symptoms have occurred which afford reasonable expectations that the afflictive malady, inore to be deplored, if possible, in the sovereign of a great empire, than in any description of his subjects-that of blindness, may at length be removed. To encourage these hopes they farther assure us, that his Majesty's eyes which have, unhappily for himself and the nation been so long closed, absolutely begin to open, and they state this cheering proof,-" That, after a short view of, and conversation with “ the Lord Chancellor and Mr. Perceval, his Majesty declared “ that he knew them!"--Whether this circumstance throws any light on that ejaculation lately offered ip by the editor of the principal opposition print, the Morning Chronicle--" Oh! that his Majesty might speedily be restored, as his royal mind would in that case be truly sensible of the wretclied state to which the nation
“ had been reduced by the measures of his ministers !"-How far the occurrences stated tend to illustrate this pious political prayer, we leave our readers to determine. It is however a fact, that the bulletins of the physicians in general give flattering expectations of his Majesty's recovery; the Prince Regent therefore very naturally supposes that should bis royal father, when restored to his usual state of health of body and mind, find his cabinet in an unsettled state, or bis throne surrounded by those servants he dismissed a few years since, it might tend to bring on a relapse, or at least those“ hurries," which (to use the fashionable medical phrase,) might occasion “ an “ erroneous view of things," and thereby put ministers to a nonplus; as it is scarcely to be imagined any one of them will, after what has passed, and what is threatened, have the hardihood to follow the precedent set them by one of their colleagues during a former illness, when his Majesty was induced to perform some of the most important functions of royalty, at the very time he was under the care of his physicians, and subject to those “ hurries," the effects of mental disorder. The Prince therefore in the difficult circumstances in which he is placed, has probably, acted for the best, in retaining for a short time those servauts who though not possessing his confidence or esteem, it is almost impossible to get rid of at the present moment.
Another thing is eqaully plain :-That his royal Highness is anxious—“That the fortunate event of his Majesty's recovery may
rescue him from a situation of unexampled embarrassment, and
put an end to a state of affairs ill calculated, he fears,” (and very justly,) " to sustain the interests of the united kingdom, in this “awful and perilous crisis, and inost difficult to be reconciled to “ the genuine principles of the British constitution." This seems to be the burden of the song in the Regent's letter to Mr. Perceval, iu the speech read in his pame by the Lord Chancellor to the two houses of parliament, and in his answer to the address of the Lord Mayor, Aldermen, and Common Council of London ; and indeed when the state of the nation, and the awkward circumstances in which the Regent is placed, are duly considered, his royal highness is entitled to full credit when he declares, that “it will be the hap" piest moment of his life, when he shall be called upon to resign " the powers now delegated to him into the hands of his beloved " father and sovereign.”
THE REGENT'S SPEECH AS DRAWN UP BY MINISTERS. Amidst the difficulties which surround the Regent, those are not the least which relate to his public language and conduct, lest his consistency should suffer by his seeming to approve the general