Page images
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors]

ing boy; to which Stikeman replied, What, do was a misunderstanding between Lady Douglas you mean Billy Austin? Cole, said, Yes. Pray and the Princess; and one day he saw Lady do the old man and woman come to see the child Douglas leave the house in tears, and afterwards as usual? Stikeman said, “ Old man and wo- she has not visited the Princess. Mr. Bidgood's man! they are not old ; we have not seen them wife has lately told him, that Fanny Lloyd told much lately; they live at Deptford;" but he ap- her, that Mary Wilson told Lloyd, that one day, peared to avoid any conversation on the subject. when she went into the Princess's room, she Cole says, that the account of the correspon. found the Princess and Sir Sidney in the fact; dence between the Princess and Captain Manby that she (Wilson) immediately left the room, and was communicated to him by Fanny Lloyd, but faiuted at the door. In the winter of 1802, she never mentioned any such correspondence and the spring of 1803, Captain Manby became having taken place through Sicard, since Cap. a visitor at Montague House ; his frigate was tain Manby went abroad. Cole says, that he fitting ont at Deptford, and Bidgood has reason has not been in the company, or presence, of the to believe, that the Princess fitted up his cabin, Prince alone, or had any conversation with him for he has seen the cotton furniture brought to on this, or any other subject, since the Princess the Princess to chuse the pattern, which was went to live at Charlton, which is near nine sent to Blake, her upholsterer, in Londonyears ago.

WM. COLE. street, Greenwich. When Captain Manby was

about to sail, he was walking in the anti-room, 230 February, 1806. William Cole. to let Captain Manby out: and, as he stayed Says, that a Gentleman and Lady were sitting some time, Bidgood looked into the room, and close together on the sofa; but there was no- from a mirror on the opposite side of the room thing particular in their dress, position of legs or to where Captain Manby and the Princess stood, arms, that was extraordinary ; he thought it im he saw Captain Manby kissing the Princess's proper that a single Gentleman should be sitting lips ; and soon afterwards he went away. He quite close to a married Lady on the Sota; and saw the Princess, with her handkerchief to her from that situation, and former observations, he face, and go into the drawing-room, apparently thought the thing improper. The person who in tears.- - In 1803, was not with the Princess was alone with the Lady at late hours of the at Margate.- In 1804, was with the Princess night (twelve and one o'clock), and whom he at Southend. We wept there on the 2d of lett sitting up after he went to bed, was Mr. May: Sicard was constantly on the look-out for Lawrence the painter, which happened two dif- the Africaine, Captain Manby's ship: and about ferent nights at least. As to the observation a month afterwards, Sicard descried the ship, made about Sir Sidney having a key of every before she came to the Nore. The instant the door about the gardens, it was a gardener, who ship cast anchor, the Captain came on shore in was complaining of the door of the green-house his boat to the Princess. The Princess had two being left open, and the plants damaged, and houses, Nos. 8 and 9. She lived at No. 9: and who made the same to Mr. Lampert, the ser- on Sicard seeing Captain Manby come on shore, vant of Sir John Douglas, and which he men- he ran down the shrubbery to meet, and shewed tioned at Cheltenham to Sir Jolin and Mr. Low- him into the house, No. 9; Captain Manby was ten. Lampert said he should know the gardener constantly at No. 9; and used to go in the evenagaiu.

ing on board his ship, for some weeks; but

afterwards he did not return on board the ship Temple, 4th April, 1806. in the evening, and Bidgood had seen him in ROBERT BİDGOOD.

the morning, by ten o'clock, in the House, No. Have lived with the Prince 23 years on the 9; and, from the circumstance of towels, water, 18th of September next, and have been with the and glasses, being placed in the passage, he had Princess since 21st of March, 1798. In 1802 reason to believe that Manby had slept there all we were at Blackheath, and did not go to any night. In 1805, Bidgood was not with the other place: in 1801 Sir Sidney Smith left his Princess in Hampshire. After the Princess card at Montague House, and he was afterwards returned from Hampshire, Captain Hood used to invited to dinner; and, in the spring of 1802, visit the Princess at Blackheath alorie, without Lady Douglas came to reside at the Tower, his wife. Captain Hood used to come about where she stayed about three weeks. During twelve o'clock, and was shewn into the blue this time Sir Sidney was frequently at the House, room, where luncheon was ordered; and the both inorning and evening, and remained till Princess and the Captain were alone together, three or four o'clock in the morning. He has without a lady or other attendant. He used to seen Sir Sidney in the blue parlour early (by ten stay dinner, and sometimes boots; about an o'clock) in the morning : and, on inquiring from hour afterwards coffee was ordered; after which the footmen how he came there without his the Princess retired, and Captain Hood had knowledge, they said, they bad not let him in, also left the room, and had not been let out of and knew nothing of his being there. He does the house by any of the servants. Bidgood has not know of Sir Sidney being alone till three or not seen Captain Hood since about Christmas four o'clock in the morning, as there were other last.------Bidgood has strong suspicions that Mrs. ladies in the house. During the year 1802 the Sander used to deliver letters to Sicard, which Princess used to ride out in her phaeton, attended he conceived to be from the Princess to Captain by Mrs. Fitzgerald, and took out cold meat, and Manby, as Sicard used to put the letters into his went towards Dartford, where she spent the day, pocket, and not into the common bag for letters. and returned about six or seven in the evening, -Mrs. Sander must be fully informed of all Williams, the coachmau, always attended the the circumstances above alluded to. Mary WilPrincess. Lady Douglas, during the year son and Miss Mielfield must also know all the 1802, was constantly at Montague Honse, and circumstances.----Bidgood has seen the mother was admitted at all times. The Princess was used (

(as she is called) of the little boy frequently at frequently to go to Lady Douglas's House, where Montague House; the child was about three Sir Sidney resided; at the end of that year there weeks old when first saw it. The mother

was at Montague House on Monday last. The properly informed of various circumstances, husband worked at Deptford Yard ; but was which must, for a feeling and delicate-minded discharged, and Stikeman has since employed 'woman, be very unpleasant to have spread, him at his house in town. The mother appears withont having the means to exculpate herself. to be better dressed than usual.

But I can, in the face of the Almighty, assure (Signed) R. BIDGOOD. your Majesty that your Daughter-in-law is innoa

cent, and her, conduct unquestionable ; free from SARAH BIDGOOD.

all the indecorums and improprieties which are About six months ago, in a conversation with imputed to her at present by the Lords CommisFauny Lloyd, respecting the general conduct of niissioners, upon the evidence of persons who the Princess, she said, that whilst Sir Sidney speak as falsely as Sir John and Lady Douglas visited the Princess, that Mary Wilson had gone themselves. Your Majesty can be sure that I into the bed-room to make up the fire, and found shall be anxious to give the most solemn denial the Princess and Sir Sidney in such an indecent in my power to all the scandalous stories of Bidsituation, that she immediately left the room, good and Cole; to make my conduct be cleared and was so shocked that she fainted away at the in the most satisfactory way for the tranquillity door.

of your Majesty, for the honour of your illus(This witness was not examined before the Com- trious family, and the gratification of your afmissioners ; at least, no Copy of such Examination, ficted daughter-in-law. In the mean tinie I can if there was any, was transmitted with the other safely trust your Majesty's gracious justice to Papers. The first paragraph in her examination is, recollect, that the whole of the evidence on however, stated above, as it is observed upon in the which the Commissioners have given credit to Princess's answer ; but the remainder, not being ad- the infamous stories charged against me, was verted to, either by the Commissioners' Report, or taken bebind my back, without my having any by the Answer, and being all hearsay, is omitted. opportunity to contradict or explain any thing,

or even to point out those persons who might Temple, 19th May, 1806. have been called, to prove the little credit Frances Lloyd, - From Ripley in Surrey. which was due to some of the witnesses, from To the best of my knowledge, Mary Wilson their connexion with Sir Johu and Lady Dougsaid, that she had seen the Princess and Sir las; and the absolute falsehood of parts of the Sidney iu the blue room; but she is so close a wo- evidence, which could have been completely man, that she never opens ber mouth on any contradicted. Oh! gracious King, I now look occasion ; never heard Mary Wilson say she was for that happy moment, when I may be allowed so alarmed as 'to be in a fit.- -Heard the gar- to appear again before your Majesty's eyes, and dener at Ramsgate say one day, at dinner, that receive once more the assurance from your Mahe had seen Mr. Sicard and Captain Manby go jesty's own mouth that I have your gracions proacross the lawn towards a subterraneous passage tection ; and that you will not discard me from leading to the sea.---When Her Royal High- your friendship, of which your Majesty has been ness was going to the launch, Sir Andrew Ham- so condescending to give me so many marks of mond and his son came the day before, and kindness ; and which must be my only support, dined with her, and in the next niorning, about and my only consolation, in this country. I refour o'clock, after the doors of the house were main with sentiments of the highest esteem, open, she saw Captain Manby sitting in the veneration and unfeigned attachment, Sire, your drawing-room of the adjoining house to Her Majesty's most datitul, submissive, and humbie Royal Highness, which room belonged to her. Danghter-in-law and Subject, -One morning, about six o'clock, she was

(Signed) CAROLINE. called to get breakfast for Her Royal Highness, To the King. when she saw Captain Manby and her walking in the garden, at Ramsgate.--Heard from

Montague House, Aug. 17th, 1806. Mrs. Lisle's maid, that the Princess, when at The Princess of Wales desires the Lord ChanLady Sheffield's, went out of her bed-room, and cellor to present her humble duty to the King, could not find her way back; but nothing more. and to lay before His Majesty the accompanying

---About four years ago, as I think, Mr. Mills letter and papers. The Princess makes this attended me for a cold, and, in conversation, communication by his Lordship’s hands, because he asked nie if the Prince visited at our house ? it relates to the papers with which she has been, I said, not to my knowledge. He said the furnished through bis Lordship by His Majesty's Princess certainly was with child,

commands. FRANCES LLOYD. To the Lord Chancellor, A trne Cepy. (Signed) J. Becket.

Aug. 17th, 1806 Whitehall, 29th August, 1806.

Sire,--Upon receiving the copy of the Report,

made to your Majesty, by the Commissioners, Blackheath, Aug. 12, 1806. appointed to inquire into certain charges against Sire, -With the deepest feelings of grati- ny conduct, I lost no time, in returning to your tude to your Majesty, I take the first opportu. Majesty, my heartfelt thanks for your Majesty's. nity to acknowledge having received, as yester- goodness in commanding that copy to be coin. day only, the Report from the Lords Conmis-municated to me. I wanted no adviser, but sioners, which was dated from the 14th of July: my own heart, to express my gratitude for the It was brought by Lord Erskine's footman, di- kindness, and protection which I have uniformly rected to the Princess of Wales; besides a note received from your Majesty. I needed no cat-.. enclosed, the contents of which were, that Lord tion or reserve, in expressing my confident ret Erskine sent the Evidences and Report by com-liance, that that kindness and protection, would mands of His Majesty. I had reason to flatter not be withdrawn from me, on this trying ocei myself that the Lords Commissioners would not casion; and that your Majesty's. justice would have given in the Report before they had been not suffer your mind to be affected, to my disa

Wales. He made the promise of other copies, your Majesty's presence for seven months, pend. without any communication with the other Coming an inquiry which your Majesty had directed missioners, wholly from a desire to shew every to be made into my conduct, affecting both my kind of respect and accommodation to Her Royal life and my honour-after that inquiry had at Highness, in any thing consistent with his duty, length terminated in the advice of your Majesty's and not at all from any idea that the papers, as Confidential and Swom Servants, that there was originally sent, (though there might be errors in no longer any reason for your Majesty's declining the copying), were not sufficiently authenticat- to receive me-after your Majesty's gracious ed; an opinion, which, he is obliged to say, he is communication, which led me to rest assured not removed from; nevertheless, the Lord'Chan that your Majesty would appoint an early day to tellor has a pleasure in conforming to Her Royal receive me if, after all this, by a renewed apHighness's wishes, and has the honour to enclose plication on the part of the Prince of Wales the attested copies of the Depositions, as he has (upon whose communications the first inquiry received them from Earl Spencer.

had been directed), I now find, that that puTo Her Royal Highness the Princess of Wales. nishment to which I had been condemned during

the same seven months' inquiry previous to [The two following Letters, not in the Book, copied the determination in my favour, should, contrary

from Morning Herald, March 17, 1813.] to the opinion of your Majesty's Servants, be Her Royal Highness the Princess of Wales to the continued after that determination, to await the King.

result of some new proceeding, to be suggested SIRE-In discharge of the duty I owe to my by the Lawyer of the Prince of Wales, it is imself, and the great duty I owe to your Majesty possible that I can fail to assert to your Majesty, and your Illustrious Family, I have herewith with the effort dne to truth, that I am, in the transmitted a statement, which I confidently consciousness' of my own innocence, and with a trust will appear to prove me not unworthy of strong sense of my unmerited sufferings, Sire, the protection and favour with which your Ma- your Majesty's most dutiful and affectionate, but jesty has pleased to honour me.--

-To be re

much injured, subject and daughter-in-law, stored to that favour and protection, in conse

(Signed) CAROLINE, quence of a conviction in your Majesty's mind of Montague-house, Blackheath, my innocence, produced by the Papers 1 now Feb. 12, 1807. humbly lay before your Majesty, is the first wish of my heart. -Grieved, Sire, deeply grieved Copy of a Letter from Her Royal Highness the as I cannot but be, that your Majesty should be

Princess of Wales to the King. exposed to so much trouble on so painful an oc- Sire,-When I last troubled your Majesty casion, and, on my account, it is yet my humble upon my unfortunate business, I had raised my trust that your Majesty will graciously forgive mind to hope that I should have the happiness me, if extreme anxiety about my honour, and of hearing from your Majesty, and receiving your your Majesty's favourable opinion, leads me gracious commands to pay my duty in your humbly to solicit, as an act of justice, that scru- Royal presence before the expiration of the last pulous attention on your Majesty's part to these week; and, when that hope was disappointed, Papers, which cannot fail, I think, to produce, eagerly clinging to any idea which offered me a in your Majesty's mind, a full conviction of my prospect of being saved from the necessity of innocence, and a dne sense of the injuries I have having recourse (for the vindication of my chasuffered. One other prayer I with all possible racter) to the publication of the proceedings humility and anxiety address to your Majesty, upon the inquiry into my conduct, I thought it that, as I can hope for no happiness, nor expect just possible, that the reason for my not hav. to enjoy the benefit of that fair reputation to ing received your Majesty's commands to that which I know I am entitled, till I am re-admit- effect might have been occasioned by the cir. ted into your Majesty's presence, and as I am in cumstance of your Majesty's staying at Windsor truth without guilt, suffering what to me is heavy through the whole of the week. I, therefore, punishment, whilst I am denied access to yonr determined to wait a few days longer before Í Majesty, your Majesty will be graciously pleased took a step which, when once taken, could not to form an early deterinination whether my con- be recalled. Having, however, now assured duct and my sufferings do not authorize me to myself that your Majesty was in town yesterday, hope that the blessing of being restored to your as I have received no command to wait Majesty's presence may be conferred upon, Sire, upon your Majesty, and no intimation of your your Majesty's dutifully attached, affectionate, pleasure.--I am reduced to the necessity of and afflicted daughter-in-law and subject. abandoning all hope that your Majesty will com

(Signed) CAROLINE. ply with my humble, my earnest, and anxious Blackheath, Oct. 2, 1806.

request. ---Your Majesty, therefore, will not

be surprised to find that the publication of the Her Royal Highness the Princess of Wales to the proceedings alluded to will not be withheld be. King.

yond Monday next.- -As to any consequences SIRE-I received yesterday, and with inex- which may arise from such publication, unplea. pressible pain, your Majesty's last verbal com- sant or hurtful to my own feelings and interests, munication. The duty of stating, in a represen- I may perhaps be properly responsible, --and in tation to your Majesty, the various grounds upon any event have no one to complain of but myself, which I feel the hardships of my case, and upon and those with whose advice have acted ; and which, I confidently think, that upon a review whatever those consequences may be, I am fully of it, your Majesty will be disposed to recal and unalterably convinced that they must be your last determination, is one I owe to myself; incalculably less than those which I should be and I cannot forbear, at the moment when I ac-exposed to from my silence. But as to any knowledge the receipt of your Majesty's letter, other consequences, unpleasant or hurtful to the to announce to your Majesty, that I propose to feelings and interests of others, or of the Public, execute that duty without delay.- After hav- my conscience will certainly acquit me of them, ing suffered the punishment of banishment from I am confident that I have pot acted impa

tiently or precipitately. To avoid coming to gatived the principal charge of substantive this painful extremity, I have taken every step crime, should have entertained considerations of in my power, except that which would abandon matters that amounted to no legal offence, and my character to utter infamy, and my station which were adduced, not as substantive charges and life to no uncertain danger, and possibly to in themselves, but as matters in support of the no very distant destruction, - With every | principal accusation ; That through the presprayer for the lengthened continuance of your sure and weight of their official occupations, Majesty's health and happiness, for every possi- they did not, perhaps could not, bestow that ble blessing which a gracious God can bestow attention on the case, which, if given to it, must upon the beloved Monarch of a loyal people, have enabled them to detect the villauy and and for the continued prosperity of your domi- falsehood of my accusers, and their foul con, nions, under your Majesty's propitious reign, I spiracy against me; and must have preserved remain, your Majesty's most untiful, loyal, and my character from the weighty imputation which affectionate, but most unhappy and most i1l- the authority of the Commissioners has, for a jured, daughter-in-law, subject and servant, time, cast upon it; but, above all, that they (Signed)

C. P. should, upon this ex parte examination, without Montague-house, March 5, 1807.

hearing one word that I could urge, have report

ed to your Majesty an opinion on these matters, To the King:

soʻprejudicial to my honour, and from which I Sire, --Impressed with the deepest sentiments can have no appeal to the laws of the country, of gratitude tor the countenance and protection (because the charges, constituting no legal ofwhich I have hitherto uniformly received from tence, canuot be made the ground of a judicial your Majesty, I approach you with a heart un inquiry ; )--These and many other circumstances dismayed upon this occasion, so awful and mo- connected with the length of the Proceeding, mentous to my character, my honour, and my which bave cruelly aggravated, to my feelings, happiness. I should indeed, (under charges such the pain necessarily attendant upon this Inquiry, as have now been brought agaiost me,) prove I shall not be able to refrain from stativg, and myself undeserving of the continuance of that urging, as matters of serious lamentation at countenance and protection, and altogether un least, if not of well-groupded complaint. In worthy of the high station, which I hold in your commenting upon any part of the circumstances, Majesty's illustrious family, if I sought for any which have occurred in the course of this lnquipartiality, for any indulgence, for any thing more ry, whatever observations I may be compelled than what is due to me in justice. My entire to make upon any of them, I trust, I shall never confidence in your Majesty's virtues assures me forget what is due to officers in high station and that I cannot meet with less. The situation, employment, under your Majesty. 'No apolowhich I have been so happy as to hold in your gy, therefore, can be required for any reserve Majesty's good opinion and esteem; my, station in my expressions towards them. But if, in in your Majesty's august family; my life, my ho- vindicating my innocence against the injustice nour, and, through mine, the honour of your and malice of my enemies, I should appear to Majesty's family have been attacked. Sir John your Majesty not to express myself with all the and Lady Douglas have attempted to support a warmth and indignation which innocence, SO direct and precise chiarge, by which they have fonlly calumniated, must feel, your Majesty dared to impute to me, the enormous guilt of will, I trust, not attribute my forbearance High Treason, coinmitted in the foul crime of to any insensibility to the grievous inAdultery: lo this charge, the extravagance of juries I have sustained; but will graciously be their malice has defeated itself. The Report of pleased to ascribe it to the restraint I have inthe Lords Commissioners, acting under your posed upon myself, lest in endeavouring to de Majesty's warrant, has most fully cleared nie ot scribe in just terms the motives, the couduct, that charge. But there remain imputations, the perjury, and all the foul circumstances, which strangely sanctioned and countenanced by that characterize and establish the malice of my acReport, on which I cannot remain silent, with cuseis, I miglit use language, which, though out incurring the most fatal consequences to my not unjustly applied to them, might be improper honour and character. For it states to your Ma- to be used by me to any body, or unfit to be jesty, that“ The circumstances detailed against employed by any body, humbly, respectfully, me must be credited, till they are decisively and dutifully addressing your Majesty. That contradicted.” To contradict, with as much a tit opportunity has occured for laying open my decision as the contradiction of an accused can

heart to your Majesty, perhaps, I shall, here. convey; to expose the injustice and malice of after, have no reason to lament.

For more my enemies; to shew the utter impossibility of than two years, I had been informed, that, giving credit to their testimony; and to vindi- | upon the presumption of some misconduct in cate my own innocence, will be the objects, me, my behaviour had been made the snbject Sire, of this letter. In the course of my pursu- of investigation, and my neighbours and servants ing these objeets, I shall liave much to complain had been examined concerning it. And for of, in the substance of the Proceeding itself, and some time I had received mysterious and indis. much in the manner of conductiug it. That any tinct intimations, that some great mischief of these charges should ever have been enter- was meditated towards me. And, in all the tained upon testimony so littie worthy of belief, circumstauces of my very peculiar situation, it which betrayed, in every sentence, the inalice will not be thonghi strange, that however conin which it originated; that, even if they were scious I was, that I had no just cause of fear, I entertained at all, Your Majesty should have should yet feel some uneasiness on this account. been advised to pass by the ordinary legal modes. With surprise certainly (because the first tidings of Inquiry into such higli crimes, and to refer were of a kind to excite surprise), but without them to a Commission, open to all the objection, alarm, I received the intelligence, that, for some which I shall have to state to such a mode of In- reason, a formal investigation of some parts of quiry; that the Commissioners, after having me. my conduct had been advised, and had actually

[ocr errors]

*

to mie,

taken place. His Royal Highness the Duke of. be questioned;" and their infamous stories and Kent, on the 7th of June, announced it to me. insinuatious against me, to be “such as deserve He annoànced to me, the Princess of Wales, in " the most serious consideration, and as must be the first communication made to me, with re- “ credited till decisively contradicted.”- The spect to this proceeding, the near approach of Inquiry, after I thus had notice of it, continued two attorneys (one of them, 1 since find, the so- for above* two months. I venture not to com: licitor employed by Sir John Douglas), claiming plain, as if it had been unnecessarily protracted. to enter my dwelling, with a warrant, to take The importani duties and official avocations of away one half of my household, for immediate the Noble Lords, appoiuted to carry it on, may examination upon a charge against myself. Of naturally account for and excuse some delay. the nature of that charge I was then uninformed. But however excusable it may have been, your It now appears, it was the charge of High Trea- 1 Majesty, will easily couceive the pain and anxson; committed in the infamous crime of adul- | iety which this interval of suspense has occatery. His Royal Highness, I am sure, will do sioned; and your Majesty will not be surprised me the justice to represent to your Majesty, that if I further represent, that I have found a great I betrayed no fear, that I manifested no symp- aggravation of my painful sufferings, in the detonis of conscious guilt, that I sought no excuses lay which occurred in communicating the Report to prepare, or to tutor, my servants for the ex

For though it is dated on tlie 14th July, amination which they were to undergo. The I did not receive it, notwithstanding your Maonly request which I made to His Royal Highness jesty's gracious commands, till the 11th of Anwas, that he would have the goodness to remain gust. It was due unquestionably to your Ma

with me till my servants were gone; that he jesty, that the result of an Inquiry, commanded 5 might bear witness, that I had no conversation by your Majesty, upon advice which had been

with them before they went. In truth, Sire, my offered, touching matters of the highest import, anxieties, under a knowledge that some serious should be first and immediately communicated mischief was planning against me, and while I to you. The respect. and honour dne to the was ignorant of its quality and extent, had been Prince of Wales, the interest which he mast ne80 great that I could not but rejoice at an event, cessarily have taken in this Inquiry, combined which seemed to promise me au early opportu- to make it indisputably fit that the result should nity of ascertaining what the malice of my ene- be forthwith also stated to His Royal Highness. mies intended against me. It has not been, I complain not, therefore, that it was too early indeed, without impatience the most painful, communicated to any one; I complain only (and that I have passed the interval, which has since I complain most seriously, for I felt it nose se elapsed. When once it was not only known to verely), of the delay in its communication to me, but to the world (for it was known to the me.---Rumour had informed the world, that world), that Inquiry of tire gravest nature had the Report had been early communicated to your been instituted into my conduct, I looked to the Majesty and to His Royal Highnessë Į did not conclusion with all the eagerness that could be receive the benefit intended for me by your Man long to an absolute conviction, that my innocence jesty's gracious command, till a month after the and my honour, to the disgrace and confusion of Report was signed. But the same ruinour had. my, açcisers, would be established; and that the represented me, to my infinite prejudice, as in groundless malice and injustice of the whole possession of the Report during that month; and charge would be manifested, to the world, as the malice of those, who wished to stain my howidely as the calumny had been circulated. I nour, las not failed to suggest all that malice knew that the result of an ex parte inquiry, from could infer, from its remaining in that possession: its very nature, could not, unless it fully asserted so long unnoticed. May I he permitted to say, my entire innocence, be in any degree just. that if the Report aequits me, my innocence enAnd I had taught myself most firmly to believe, titled me to receive from those, to whom yourl. that it was utterly impossible that any opinion: Majesty's commands had been given, an imme. which could, in the smallest degree, work a pre- diate notification of the fact that it did acquit judice to my honour and character, could ever be me. That if it condemned me, the weight of expressed in any terms, by any persons, in a such a sentence should not have been left to set. Report upon a solemn formal Inquiry, and more tle in any mind, much less upon your Majesty's, especially to your Majesty, without my having for a month, before I could even begin to presome notice and some opportunity of being pare an answer, which, when begun, conid not heard. And I was convinced that, if the pro- speedily be concluded; and that, if the Report ceeding allowed me, before, an opinion was ex- could be represented as both acquitting and conpressed, the ordiuary means which accuseci per- demning me; the reasons, which suggested the sons have, of vindicating their homur and their propriety of an early communication in eack of innocence, my honour and my innocence must, the former cases, combined to make it proper in any opinion which could then be expressed, and necessary in the latter. And why al conbe fully vindicated and effectually establislied. sideration of my feelings was thus cruelly Bego What then, Sire, must have been my astonish- lected; why was I kept upon the rack, during ment and my dismay, when I saw, that notwith all this time, ignorant of the resalt of a charge, standing the priņcipal accusation was found to which atfected my honour and my life; and why, bę utterly false, yet some of the witnesses to especially in a case where such grave matters those charges which were brought in support of were to continue to be “ credited, to the prejuthe principal accusation, witnesses whom any person, interested to have protected my cha- * The time that the Inquiry was pending, after racter, wonld easily have shewn, out of their this notice of it, is here confounded with the own months, to be utterly unworthy of credit, time which elapsed before the Report was comand confederates in foul conspiracy with my false municated to her Royal Highness. The Inquiry accusers, are reported to be “ free from all sus-itselt only lasted to the 14th or 16th of July,

picion of unfavourable bias;" their veracity, which is but between five and six weeks from the in the judgment of the Commissioners, not to 7th of June.

.

« PreviousContinue »