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tenham, 8th of January, 1806, and the other the 29th of March, 1806. One of Mr. Lampert, baker, Cheltenham, same date with the last. Four of William Cole, dated 11th January, 14th January, 30th January, and 23d February, 1806. One of Robert Bidgood, dated Temple, 4th April; 1806. One of Sarah Bidgood, dated Temple, 23d April, 1806. * One of Frances Lloyd, dated Temple, 12th May, 1806. The King's Warrant for holding the Commission, dated the 29th May, 1806. Deposition of Lady Douglas, dated the 1st of June, 1806. Deposition of Sir John Douglas, dated the 1st of June, 1806. Deposition of Robert Bidgood, dated the 6th of June, 1806. Deposition of William Cole, dated the 6th June, 1806. Deposition of Frances Lloyd, dated the 7th of June, 1806. Deposition of Mary Wilson, dated the 7th of June, 1806. Deposition of Samuel Roberts, dated the 7th of June, 1806. Deposition of Thomas Hikeman, dated the 7th of June, 1806. Deposition of J. Picard, dated the 7th of June, 1806. Deposition of Sophia Austin, dated the 7th of June, 1806. Letter from Lord Spencer to Lord Gwydir, 20th of June, 1806. Letter from Lord Gwydir to Lord Spencer, 20th of June, 1806. Letter from Lady Willoughby to Lord Spencer, 21st of June, 1806. Extracts from the Register of Brownlowstreet Hospital, dated 23d of June, 1806. Deposition of Elizabeth Gosden, dated 23d of June, 1806. Deposition of Betty Townley, dated 25th of June, 1806. Deposition of Thomas Edmonds, dated 25th of June, 1806. Deposition of Samuel G. Mills, dated 25th of June, 1806. Deposition of Hamit Fitzgerald, dated 27th of June, 1806. Letter from Lord Spencer to Lord Gwydir, dated 1st of July, 1806. Letter from Lord Gwydir to Lord Spencer, dated 3d July, 1806. . Query to Lady Willoughby, and Answer, dated 3d of July, 1806. Farther Depositions of Robert Bidgood, dated 3d of July, 1806.
Deposition of Sir Francis Milman, dated 3d of July, 1806.
Deposition of Mr. Lisle, dated 3d July, 1806. .
Letter from Sir Francis Milman to the Lord Chancellor, dated 4th July, 1806.
Deposition of Lord Cholmondeley, dated 6th July, 1806.
The debate upon these resolutions appears to have been of great length; but as the galleries were shut, a mere sketch of it has gone forth to the world. That sketch, however, (which I have inserted below) will shew, that, in whatever degree the different speakers might vary in their opinions as to other points, they were all perfectly of accord, that there existed no grounds of charge against the mother who was restricted in her visits to her only child. The Honourable mover of the resolutions said there may exist doubts, as to the innocence of the Princess; if not at this time, there may hereafter exist doubts with regard to that innocence; and, therefore, while all the witnesses are alive, while ali the testimony is forth coming, while all the means of proof are at hand, let us inquire, and for ever put an end to these doubts, and to the possibility of doubt. No, no, no, said the ministers, the innocence of the Princess is so clearly established; all the charges against her so manifestly void of foundation, that inquiry is not only not necessary, but that to inquire would be doing injustice to the Princess, by seeming to allow that there are persons in the world who still entertain a doubt of her innocence.
MR. Coghrank Johnstone might well say that the day on which he made his motion was a proud day for him. It was so, but it was a still prouder day for the Princess of Wales, who, at the end of seven years of calumny, of base parasitical slander, heard herself pronounced innocent and her traducers pronounced perjured, and that, too, by the chosen ministers, by the confidential Servants, by the advisers of the Prince her husband. . This discussion in the House of Commons has, in the minds of all men of common sense, settled the question. There are still some persons to throw out insinuations against Her Royal Highness; but these are so notoriously the panders of mean hatred, cowardly malice, despicable impotence, and of every thing that is vile in man, aye, in the meanest of mankind, that no one pays the smallest attention to what they say.
"Whether the parliament may think it
meet to adopt any proceeding upon the subject; whether they may think it right, in the way of address: or otherwise, to interfere in behalf of the Princess, I cannot pretend to say, and they are a body far too wise for me to presume to offer them any thing in the way of advice; but, I have no scruple to say, that I think it a fit occasion for the people, assembled in a constitutional manner, to prove, by some solemn declaration of their sentiments, that they still retain that love of justice and that hatred of false accusation, which were formerly prominent features in the character of Englishmen. As to the precise way in which they ought to do this, it is not for me to point out; but, the way will not be difficult to discover by men of proper feeling and of just minds. It is now seven years since these calumnies were first circulated against the Princess of Wales; and, now, that they are all shewn to have been false, now, that we are fully able to estimate all her sufferings and her long forbearance, it would be a shame indeed, if there were none to be found amongst us to shew that we feel for her as we ought. The people have not, indeed, the power to punish her traducers; they have not the power to replace her in Carlton House; they have not the power to give her admission to her :daughter; but they have the power to shew to all the world, and to that daughter in particular, that they are lovers of Justice, and that they hold in abhorrence false accusers, cowardly and malicious calumniators. In the case of the Princess of Wales there is every: thing to excite a feeling in her favour. In the first place, we see that it was owing to no fault of hers that her husband's palace was no longer her place of abode. In the next place we see false and infamous accusations trumped up against her, and the tongue of calumny let loose, while she was destitute of all the means of defence, having by her counsellors, been prevented from making public the refutation of charges, the substance of which charges, unaccompanied with any answer, had gone forth to the world. Lastly, we see her denied the sight of her daughter
- except once in a fortnight, while even the
, advisers of the Prince declare her to be innocent and her traducers to be perjured. Such is briefly the state of her case, and I , say, for the whole nation to remain silent, - for no part of the people to give utterance to any feeling for her would justify the opi, nion, that Englishmen have less sensibility than the half-frozen inhabitants of the coast
of Labrador. Talk of LIBELS, indeed : What libels has she not had to endure? A month has not passed over our heads since the writers in the Courier and Times
newspapers poured forth libels against her,
which no private person would have suf. fered to pass without prosecution. They called her rash, foolish, and with an inso. lent affectation of compassion, pointed her out as seduced and unfortunate. In short, they spoke of her in terms the most contemptuous, they affected to pity her for having been so weak as to call for fresh inQuiry into her conduct, which conduct they had the impudence unequivocally to describe as indecent to the last degree. Seven years of these calumnies she has had to endure, and, to her immortal houcur be it spoken, she has relied upon her innocence for the support of her character, and has, in no instance, resorted to the assistance of the law. She has wisely relied upon the neverfailing power of truth; she has relied also (and I hope, for the sake of the character of the country, she will not here be deceived) upon the good sense and love of justice of the people of England. Besides the justice due to the Princess, we ought to consider the light in which we as a nation, shall appear, in this instance, in the eyes of the world. It will not be forgotten with what addresses, what speeches, what exhibitions, what acclamations of joy this lady was received upon her arrival in England. The world will not forget the praises we then bestowed upon her, and even the gratitude we expressed at her having condescended to become instrumental in the happiness of ourselves and our posterity: and, the world will not fail to remark, that the commencement of the calumnies against her, that the perjuries by which she was traduced took place in a very few months after her father was killed, and his successors berest of their dominions ! I will not impute even to perjured wretches the baseness of choosing such a time for the making of their attack; but the fact, as to the time, is as I have stated it; and most assuredly the change produced by the events here spoken of, in the circumstances of her family, must have great weight in the mind of eve. ry considerate person. The more destitute she is of the means of protection from any other quarter, the stronger is her claim on the people of England; and I cannot help repeating my opinion, that if the occasion be suffered to pass without some testimony of public feeling in her favour, it will be a great and lasting reproach to this nation,
This interference on the part of the
people is the more necessary, and at the same time more likely to be proper, as
both the great political factions have left Her Royal Highness to her fate, or, ra
ther, have, each in its turn, been her enemies. Nay, they have not only by
turns disclaimed her cause ; but they have
both of them accused her of having resorted
to the support of the “enemies of social
“ order and regular government ;” that is
to say, men who meddle with politics
without pocketing, or wishing to pocket,
the public money. These are, in our
country, called Jacobins and friends of Buonaparté; and to these men the factions,
who fight for the public money, have ac
cused the Princess of resorting for advice
and support. If this accusation be true (and I have no inclination to deny it), it
appears that she has not made a bad choice
at last. She has not been betrayed this
time, at any rate. Until now her conduct
has been an object of calumny with her
enemies and of suspicion with many good
people; but, by following the advice of the Jacobins, she has silenced the former
and removed the doubts of the latter. If her husband were to take a little advice
from the same source, it would, I am per
suaded, be full as well for him. The
Princess has, in fact, made her appeal to
the people. She has published her com
plaint. She has called upon the people
for their opinion upon the merits of her case; and, though that opinion has been pronounced without hesitation in private,
it wants, in order to give it its full effect,
to be expressed in a public, solemn, and authentic manner.
In a future Letter it will give me great
pleasure to tell you that this has been done;
and, in the meanwhile, I remain your faithful friend,
- REPORT (Copied from the Times News-paper of the 6th March) Qs a Debate in the House of Commons on the 5th of March, 1813, relative to Her Royal Highness the Princess of Wales.
[N.B. I insert this Report just as I find it printed; but, I think it right to observe, that it is said to be a very imperfect sketch of the real debate; and I think it my duty to state most distinctly,–that I do not impute perjury to Lady or Sir John Douglas; I merely show what other editors have pub
lished; and I further say, that I think the public should wait and HEAR Sir john and Lady Douglas, before it makes up its mind as to the guilt of either of them.]
Mr. Cochrane Johnstone then rose. His motion, he stated, originated entirely with himself, without any communication with other persons. He even did not know that he should find one Member to second it. He had transmitted to the Princess of Wales, and to the King's Ministers, a copy of the Resolutions he intended to propose. He then referred to the Report made by the Commissioners of the Privy Council, at the command of His Majesty, in 1806; and the authenticity of which, he said, he was enabled to prove at the bar, if required to do so. He read over the charges made against Her Royal Highness at the time, and many of the particular items of those charges, with the concluding Report. The Princess, he stated, had, on receiving a copy of that
Report, addressed a letter to His Majesty,
a copy of which he read, (this letter was of considerable length), the authenticity of which he was also prepared to substantiate. The letter alluded to the malice of her enemies,—to her not being called upon to make a fair defence,—and to the parties not being credible witnesses. That Report was signed by the four Lords, Spencer, Grenville, Erskine, and Ellenborough. In March, 1807, a change took place in His Majesty's Councils, and Mr. Perceval then prevailed upon the King to restore the Princess to favour: and she was accordingly again received at Court. Since that time no material change had occurred in her situation till recently, when she had received a communication from the Earl of Liverpool, by which she was informed, that her accustomed intercourse with the Princess Charlotte was to be abridged. This produced Her Royal Highness's Letter to the Prince Regent, and led to the late reference of the case to certain Members of the Privy Council. In his opinion, the four Lords Commissioners in 1806 had gone beyond their authority, in pronouncing their opinion on the Princess's conduct, as they had done. The charge against Her Royal Highness was no less than High Treason. If, as Magistrates, they had a right to examine witnesses to the facts, yet he conceived that they had no right to pronounce either her condemnation or her acquittal. That Report, therefore, as far as concerned their judgment, he looked upon as of no effect in law. Lady Douglas's deposition, who swore to the pregnancy in 1802, remained uncontradicted. In what a state would the country be placed, if this proceeding was again to be called for, and the evidence of Lady Douglas produced ; while that of witnesses on the other side, could not, from death or other causes, be obtained? It was, therefore, the bounden duty of Parliament to provide against such an event. He called to the recollection of the House, that no proceedings had been instituted against Sir John or Lady Douglas, for defaming the character of the Princess. He thought that the confidential servants of the Prince Regent ought to send the Princess copies of all letters and papers concerning her conduct since 1806, as far, at least, as it was alluded to in the proceedings on the late Report. A strict and impartial investigation of her conduct ought certainly to take place. In the task he had undertaken, he was actuated only by a conscientious sense of his duty as a Member of Parliament. After various other remarks, the Hon. Member concluded by moving two Resolutions. The first was of great length, recapitulating the contents of all the reports and papers concerning Her Royal Highness. The second was for an Address to His Royal Highness the Prince Regent, praying His Royal Highness to lay the whole of the documents before the House, together with all other papers relative thereto. MR. John WHART.on seconded the motion. LoRD CastleREAch rose and said, he felt that he should act most consistently with his duty in confining himself to explanation, with respect to parts of the Hon. Member's speech, which would tend to guard the House against those false impressions which it might otherwise excite. The mode of proceeding adopted by the Hon. Member was somewhat singular. His first Resolution was, in fact, even in his own view of it, without any proof. His second Resolution called for those very papers, as matters of information, on which his first Resolution was founded; as if they were matters of certain knowledge. He did not mean to urge it in the way of cavil against • the proceeding, but surely if there were any grounds for the Resolutions, the second should have been the preliminary one; as the first, in its order, could by no possibility be adopted by the House. The only object of the information called for, seemed to be to persuade the House, that such serious doubts existed as to the succession to
the Throne, as required the interserence of Parliament. He should not enter into any
detailed inquiry as to the legality of the
Privy Council acting as a tribunal in their proceedings on this subject; but he would state, that he was perfectly satisfied, that they were fully competent to inquire, whether there were, or were not, sufficient grounds of charge for putting the Princess of Wales on her defence. The present motion, however, did not go to the extent of settling the question, whether any such proceedings were, or were not, necessary. But he must say, that if the Commissioners were not competent to decide upon the charges against her Royal Highness of be-, ing pregnant in the year 1802, the House of Commons was certainly not the proper tribunal for deciding on such a question.— If, on the other hand, no actual criminality was imputed to her Royal Highness, that House was equally an improper tribunal for deciding on that question. If, again, every shade in the conduct of the Princess of Wales, from the highest degree of guilt down to the lowest levity, were to be considered, that House was not, certainly, the place where such matters should be discussed. He must also observe, that if any unfortunate disputes or disunions existed between any members or branches of the Royal Family, any discussion in the House of Commons could serve only to increase alienation, to augment the evil, and to widen the breach. The only solid practical ground, therefore, on which Parliament could proceed, would be, that doubts attached to the succession to the Crown. But in the present case there was not the smallest doubt entertained upon that subject. The Commissioners in 1806, from their known character, and high legal qualifications, were certainly fit persons to decide upon that question ; and they had decided, and no doubts remained on their minds that required the necessity of Parliamentary interposition. They did not make a comparative inquiry into the weight of the evidence of Lady Douglas, as compared with, or contrasted to, that of other witnesses; but they decided, that they had traced the whole history of the child so completely and satisfactorily, that no possible doubt could remain that it was not born of the Princess of Wales, but of another woman, named Sophia Austin. Nor, indeed, did this decision rest only on their Report, for it was afterwards referred to other confidential servants of His Majesty, who gave a solemn judgment, confirming the Report of the first Commissioners. The supposed doubt respecting the succession, was, therefore, rebutted by the authority of the first Commissioners of the first Cabinet; and also by that of the subsequent Cabinet, to whom the matter was referred, and who confirmed the same judgment. If any doubt found its way into the mind of Parliament, he would not deny, in the abstract, that no case might exist, as to the question of Succession, which it might be the duty of Parliament to examine; but would the Honourable Gentleman say, that after all those authorities which he had stated, it would be regular or rational for Parliament to interfere? Would not such interference rather serve to originate doubts, where no doubts existed; and give countenance to suspicions, contrary to the repeated declarations of all parties, that no case whatever had been made out, to require any such interference on the part of Parlia: ment? The Hon. Gentleman himself had made his statement in such a manner as to shew that he entertained no doubts upon the subject: yet when neither he, nor any other Member, had any doubt respecting the legitimacy of the Succession, he called upon Parliament to legislate. It was perfectly true that there had been no prosecution entered into, of Lady Douglas: her evidence was taken by the Commissioners in the discharge of their duty; and the Hon. Gentleman should have stated in candour, that the first Cabinet recommended that no proceedings should be had, unless the Crown Lawyers deemed it advisable to prosecute Lady Douglas for perjury. A case was laid before them; and though they were satisfied as to the perjury, they, nevertheless, saw great difficulties in the way of establishing it by legal evidence, and, therefore, they did not advise prosecution. If he were so disposed, he might use some grounds of personal complaint against the Hon. Member, for he had transgressed the rules of his parliamentary duty, in stating that Mr. Perceval had prevailed upon the Cabinet to espouse the cause of the Princess of Wales. The Cabinet had acted deliberately and conscientiously in the business, and had advisèd that there were no
reasons why her Royal Highness should not.
be admitted again to the presence of the Sovereign, agreeably to the recommendation of the former Cabinet, with whom, indeed, it had originated. The Hon. Member had stated with a marked emphasis, that Lady Douglas's evidence was given by command of his Royal Highness the Prince Regent. In this matter, the Prince Regent followed the advice of Lord Thurlow,
which was to have the evidence reduced to writing, in order to submitting it to legal consideration. Then his Royal Highness felt it to be his duty to communicate the charges to his Royal Father, with whom, and with whose Cabinet, and not with his Royal Highness himself, the whole affair had from that time remained. He could really see no necessity for pursuing the subject of this discussion any farther. It could not be properly brought forward, except on the presumption that some doubts existed relative to the succession to the Crown ; and he trusted, that in what he had said, he had convinced the House that no such doubts did exist. Calling for further information, if agreed to, would only be the means of gratifying private curiosity, by making Parliament the instrument of procuring that gratification, that taste for calumny, which was so much the rage at the present moment. He should trust to the indulgence of the House, to explain farther in reply, in case other circumstances were touched upon, which unight render farther explanations necessary: and he hoped that the House would not tolerate suspicions or doubts, where none whatever existed, by adopting the motion of the Hon. GentleIIldIl. Sir SAMUEl Romilly commenced by observing, that the Hon. Member (Mr. Cochrane Johnstone) had iudulged himself in terms of such strong censure of the Administration of 1806, as to render it impossible for him to preserve silence. No man who knew them, would throw the slightest shade of disrespect or suspicion on the conduct of those four Noble Lords, who composed that Commission of Inquiry. With respect to himself, he had to say, that he was consulted by his Royal Highness, in his professional capacity, upon the subject; and was, he believed, selected for that purpose, by the recommendation of the late Lord Thurlow, that he might give his opinion on this very delicate investigation... After having considered it with the utmost care and anxiety, he addressed a Letter to his Royal Highness, containing his sentiments on the matter, in December, 1805. After he gave that opinion, his Royal Highness took every possible means to ascertain what gredit was due to the parties, whose testimony had been given. In the change of Administration which shortly followed, he had the honour of being appointed Solicitor-General; and in March, 1806, he received His Majesty's commands to confer with Lord Thurlow on this important business.