hopes of recovery were confidently entertained, was still bound to keep in view the chance of, at least, a partial re-establishmentof his majesty's health, in the provisions to be made for the care ...Pthe royal person, and the dignity of the sovereign. Mr Perceval came forward at a very early period of the session, with a plan for the arrangement of his majesty’s household. e stated, that when this melancholy subject had last engaged the attention of parliament, sanguine expectations were entertained of the king’s recovery; that so long as such hopes could be indulged, it was the duty of the legislature to look chiefly to the restoration of his majesty to health and to the exercise of the sovereign authority, guarding at the same time against any inconvenience which might arise from the temporary suspension of the kingly functions: That the legislature was now called upon to act in very different circumstances ; that an arrangement, not of a temporary, but of a permanent nature, was demanded,—an arrangement which should neither imply a confident hope nor an absolute despair of the king’s restoration to health: That the measures adopted last year had made full provision for supplying the exercise of the royal authority; and as the law now stood, by the 18th of February all the authority, as well as all the duties of the sovereign, would devolve on the Prince Regent; and as the civil list would also of course be transferred to his royal highness, it became necessary to make some provision for the personal comfort and dignity of the king : That his majesty’s present civil list was the proper fund for such provision, and his present officers and servants, the proper attendants for him during his illness: That as separate establishments for a regent and a king would now be necessary, some addition must be made

to the civil list; and an addition of 70,000l. per annum could not in such circumstances be deemed extravagant. He then proceeded to state, that as the lord steward and lord chamberlain had important duties to perform immediately connected with the royal functions, it would be necessary that these officers should be placed round the person of the regent, who was to be invested with the royal authority. In the room of the first, therefore, it was proposed, that the first gentleman of the bed-chamber should be substituted as the chief officer of the king’s household; that the vice-chamberlain should be appointed his deputy; that four lords and as many grooms of the bed-chamber, a master of the robes, and seven or eight equerries, together with his majesty's private secretary, should form the new officers of the proposed establishment, which, of course, must be placed under the controul of the queen, to whom the care of his majesty's person had been entrusted : That the expenses of this establishment, in so far as an estimate could be formed from the expenditure at Windsor during the year ending 5th July, 1811, would not exceed 100,000l. This sum, Mr Perceval proposed to take from the civil list, provision being made at the same time, that a deficit, if such should occur, should be supplied upon an application to the treasury, the propriety of which should be af. terwards judged of by parliament, and the sum voted out of the supplies for the year. That in the circumstances in which the queen was placed, discharging, as she had done with exemplary fidelity, the duties which she owed to her royal consort, and thus incurring an extraordinary expenditure, it seemed proper that her majesty should have a small addition made to her income, not exceeding 10,000l., which sum should be paid out of the civil list. It was further proposed, that the pensions and allowances which the king had been in use to grant to the objects of his bounty, should be paid as formerly out of the privy purse; that the expences incurred for medical assistance should be paid out of the revenue of the duchy of Lancaster, on which an excess had arisen of 30,000l. or 40,000l. annually; and, lastly, that a commission of three persons should be appointed, one of them to be a master in Chancery, and the other two to be named by the queen and the Prince Regent, for the management of the king’s private property. The commissioners were to be entrusted also with the power of auditing all accounts of pensions and allowances taken out of the privy purse.

Such were the arrangements proposed with reference to the king’s household. To the Prince Regent, however, the civil list would, in this manner, be returned 100,000l. a-year less than had been enjoyed by the king ; and it might be thought most advisable at once to vote the above sum out of the consolidated fund, and to extinguish the exchequer revenue payable to the prince. But as his royal highness had very naturally believed that the income arising to him out of the exchequer should be continued until he should come into possession of the monarchy itself; and as many persons had claims upon this revenue, which amounted annually to 120,000l., it would not have been equitable, in such circumstances, to disturb the supply. There could be no greatinconvenience, however, in transferring 50,000l. out of the exchequer revenue of the prince, to meet in part at least the deficiency of the civil list, leaving the remaining 70,000l. untouched; and although there must still be a deficit of 50,000l. this sum might be dispensed with, as the prince had not so large a family

as his royal father, and had no occasion, of course, for so considerable an expenditure. It would have been very unfair, however, to transfer the civil list to his royal highness as if it had been solvent, and quite sufficient to defray the royal expenses, when it was known that from the year 1804 downwards, an annual deficit had occurred of 24,000l. which had hitherto been supplied from the excess of the Scots civil list and the admiralty droits. Mr Perceval, therefore, proposed that this deficiency should still be supplied in the same manner, unless it should increase so far as to exceed its present average by 10,000l. when the subject should be submitted to the consideration of parliament. It was finally proposed, that 100,000l. should be voted to meet the expences which the prince had incurred, or might yet incur, on his assumption of the royal authority; a compensation which he had generously declined to receive, so leng as he had reason to flatter himself that the change in his condition might be temporary, but which had now become indispensable by the altered circumstances in which the country was placed. The minister had no sooner developed his plan, than a desire was manifested to obstruct the progress of the measure, which the immediate expiration of the restrictions on the Prince Regent rendered it necessary to accelerate. Mr Ponsonby demanded an account of the reasons which had occasioned the deficiency in the civillist; he censured the perplexity of the minister’s plan; denied the propriety of forming any establishment which should cast a magnificence around the king, which he was no longer capable of enjoying; and insisted, above all, that suitable provision should be made for the prince, in whom the royal authority was now to be vested, . to his royal highness to decide on what

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might be proper for the dignity and comfort of his father. Mr Ponsonby perhaps forgot that the deficiency in the civil list, although a very proper subject in other circumstances for the consideration of parliament, had no immediate connection with the measure then proposed to the house. He forgot also, when he objected to the household establishment, that his majesty, although severely afflicted, was still the king of England, and could not, in decency even, be entirely stripped of dignity and splendour; and he must have forgotten also, what was at that moment in evidence before the committee, that, since his lamented indisposition, his majesty had been in the habit of communicating with his family and his ministers; that he had shewn himself competent to all the purposes of ordinary intercourse, and feelingly alive to his unfortunate condition. In circumstances such as these, which might still recur, even if a sense of decorum had not opposed all miserable plans of economy, the feelings of humanity would have exclaimed against them. Had the suggestion of Mr Ponsonby, which was enforced by many of his friends, “ that it should be left to the heir-apparent to decide upon what was proper for the dignity and comfort of his majesty,” been adopted by parliament, his royal highness must have been placed in a situation very distressing to his delicacy. Other objections were made to the proposed † by Mr Tierney. It was a most alarming thing, in his opimion, that two courts should be created; that the Prince Regent, exercising the oyal functions, should have a splendid court, while the queen should al*have her court, to the support of which the enormous sum of 100,000l. Was to be applied 1 What object could the ministers have in view by a protoeding so extraordinary 2 they could

mean nothing else than to create a secret and a dangerous influence; to oppose the splendour, the influence, and intrigue of her majesty’s court to the legitimate authority of the Prince Regent's. The minister, in short, by placing grooms of the bed-chamber, masters of the robes, and equerries, at the disposal of the queen, must certainly have intended to subvert the constitution . . Mr Tierney condescended to make some observations, which were not very worthy of the occasion. “His objection,” he said, “was, that splendid personages were to be placed round his majesty, at the same time that the queen also had splendid personages attached to her household. Why could not one master of the robes and one treasurer serve for both It was not well to let it go out to the country, that in his majesty’s present state a master of the robes was necessary to take care of his dress.” These objections having been overruled, a bill was brought in to make provision for the better support of his majesty’s household, and for the care of his majesty’s real and personal property during the continuance of his indisposition. Mr Tierney renewed his attack. He contended, that as the civil list had been maturely arranged in the year 1804, and as there had, from that year downward, been a regular excess in the departments of the lord steward, the lord chamberlain, &c. an account should be laid before parliament, shewing the amount of the charges and the reasons of the excess. This proposal was readily acceded to ; but when the accounts were produced, Mr Tierney expressed his dissatisfaction with them; and, in conjunction with other members of the house, renewed his opposition to the bill. He began, by paying some merited compliments to the charactor


of the Prince Regent. Alluding to the act of the preceding year, by which his royal highness had been called to the regency, Mr Tierney remarked, “ that the restrictions contained in that act were such as the Prince of Wales felt were not only painful, but injurious and insulting to the character of his royal highness. Since the passing of that act up to the present moment, his royal highness had conducted himself in such a manner, as not only to call forth the admiration of the country, but also to remove any suspicion, o any man had suspicion lurking in his mind at the time the act passed), that his future conduct would not be regulated in the same manner. The whole of his royal highness’s conduct had been directed by attention to the comforts of his royal father, and had on all occasions done credit to himself, and would refute any insinuations to the contrary. There was nothing in his royal highness’s past conduct that could lead him to a suspicion, that if he was clothed with full powers he would abuse those powers.” Mr Tierney, however, contended, that the measure before the house, was one of reat financial but still greater political importance; that, although the Prince Regent was now to be permanently invested with the royal authority, and to enjoy the revenues of the sovereign, he was still left in possession of part of a revenue which belonged to him only as Prince of Wales, and which ought now to fall into the exchequer; that the result of the arrangement would be such as to place at the disposal of his royal ño. a civil-list revenue exceeding that which his royal father had enjoyed by 20,000l. a

year; that a part of this large fund

was to be placed beyond the controul of parliament; that if the prince were to have a privy purse, as to the pro

priety of which there could be no. doubt, his royal father, in the condition to which he was reduced, could certainly have no occasion for such a purse; that the privy purse belonged to the office, not to the person of the king ; that, instead of leaving to the uncontrolled disposal of the prince an annual sum of 70,000l., parliament ought at once to interpose and pay the debts which his royal highness had contracted; and that it would be much more creditable to the house to enter on a thorough revisal of the civil list, and establish it upon a footing suitable to the dignity of the crown, and the generosity of the nation, than to add to a revenue, which had been found inadequate to the purposes to which it was destined. The right honourable gentleman then proceeded in a strain of argument, calculated to sow distrust betwixt the prince and the ministers, for

whom his royal highness had by this

time indicated a predilection. “If they did not enter at present upon a fullarrangement,” said he, “every year they went on they would be continually exposed to a fresh discussion on the subject of the civil list. It was true, they were told, that the average excess had been hitherto discharged out of the droits of admiralty and the excess of the Scotch revenue, and that if the expenditure of his royal highness should exceed that average excess, it would be necessary to come to parliament. What was this, he would ask, but an indirect statement, that an addition was to be made to the civil list to the amount of this average excedent, while in the outset he was to be curtailed of 50,000l. enjoyed by his father ? The fact was, that this was a plan to keep the Prince Regent always in restraint, always under the necessity of applying for something from ministers, for which, no doubt, he was to give something to ministers

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in return. Their conduct appeared here in the most artful light. He wanted, therefore, to see the prince entirely free from ministers. During the whole of the last reign, animosities had taken place respecting the paying off the debts contracted by the civil list. Why, then, would not the minister at once come down, and ask from the house, he would not say a lavish grant, but such a sum as they ought to grant 2 Was it the way that the civil list ought to be provided for at the commencement of a reign, to tell the house that the excedent of 124,000l. was to be paid out of the droits of admiralty and Scotch revenue 2 Every thing in this business was left unexplained, and the house was left ...; involved in doubts and perplexities. Throughout the whole bill, there was an apparent distrust of his royal highness, while every thing was calculated to appear like very great kindness to him. In place of the 100,000l. taken from the civil list, 70,000l. were to be given him, for which he was to be under no controul. But this was one side of the picture only, and it was proper also to look at the other. Here, then, was a settled distrust manifested respecting the intentions of his royal highness; he was considered by them as incapable and unfit to be trusted with the management of his father's servants; the father was placed under the controul, not of his son, but of others. The distrust entertained of the Prince Regent was the real reason for all this conduct.” Mr Tierney took the lead in these discussions on the part of opposition; but objections of a different kind were started by other members. Complaints were made of the obscurity of that part of the civil-list accounts which was comprehended under the head of diplomacy. The charge in this depart

ment had increased, it was said, at aperiod when the country seemed to have no opportunity of sending out diplomatists; and some minute objections, which it were useless to recapitulate, were made to the various items of charge. If the house should pass the bill, it must, without information, recognise the necessity of an excess in

the expenditure above the revenue of

the civil list to the amount of 124,000l. annually. The provision for paying the prince's debts was Ho: as highly irregular. No application of this kind ought to have been made to parliament in any other shape than that of a message from the prince. Mr Whitbread summed up the arguments of opposition, and concluded with the following piece of declamation, which may afford a tolerably fair specimen of his eloquence. “This bill,” said he, “ teemed with influence: Under it three commissioners were appointed to take care of his majesty's property; these gentlemen were to take an oath of secrecy, so that the parliament could knownothing of their proceedings; to the queen, who was not their mistress, to the prince, who was not their master, they were bound to explain all their acts; but they must conceal every thing from the Commons’ House of Parliament, who ought to be acquainted with every farthing expended. He conceived it right, in an argument of this kind, to put extreme cases ; and he would ask, as had been done by an honourable baronet (Sir F. Burdett), whom he did not then see in his place, suppose this money was laid out in the purchase of Cornish boroughs, suppose it was expended in procuring seats in that house, for the benefit of the real and personal estate of the king, though, in a narrow view, he might benefit by it, still, being destructive of the constitution, must it

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