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vested with the office, and that the plans of the Rockingham Administration should be pursued. Pitt, though offered a high appointment in the Rockingham Ministry, would not accept of it; and abstained from much connection with Fox and Burke. He had embraced the sentiments of his father respecting the independence of America; sentiments different from those of Burke and Fox. During the Rockingham Administration, Pitt made a motion for a reform in Parliament, which he supported by very ingenious arguments; arguments, however, the strength or weakness of which depends entirely on the circumstances of the times.

Pitt, when Lord Shelburne was made First Lord of the Treasury, was appointed Chancellor of the Exchequer; an appointment to which the same objections could not be made as to that of Premier, Pitt being under no engagements to the late Administration.

Military operations were in a great degree suspended in America. Admiral Rodney

had gained a great victory in the WestIndies. In Europe, Gibraltar was the principal scene of war. -There the courage, conduct, and genius of Elliot destroyed the works of the Spaniards, and so rendered the continuance of a siege impracticable; whilst the ability and skill of Lord Howe relieved the garrison from the evils of a blockade. In the East-Indies, though Britain had to contend with the French, the Dutch, and the national powers from the northern parts of the hither peninsula to the southern, yet was she victorious, through the abilities of Hastings.

During the winter a negociation was opened between the belligerent powers, tired with a war wasteful to all parties; and, as there was nothing in the system of either to prevent tranquillity, a peace was concluded in January, 1783.


When the session opened, the terms of peace were very severely arraigned by Opposition, now consisting of the friends of

Burke and Fox, and of Lord North, who had formed the famous coalition.

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On the meeting of Parliament, Dec. 5th, 1782, Fox explained the grounds of his resignation and that of his colleagues. When in Administration, he had proposed to recognize the independence of the United States in the first instance, and not to reserve it as a condition of peace. To this proposal Lord Shelburne had agreed, and had written an official letter to the Commander in Chief in America, to communicate the resolution to the United States. Fox then considered Shelburne as having pledged himself to agree to an unconditional acknowledgement of the independence of America. Judge, then,' said Fox, of my grief and astonishment, when, during the illness of my noble friend (the Marquis of Rockingham) another language was heard in the cabinet; and the noble Earl and his friends began to consider the above letter as containing offers only of a conditional nature, to be recalled, if not accepted as the price of peace. Finding myself thus ensnared and betrayed, and all

confidence destroyed, I quitted a situation in which I found I could not remain either with honour or safety.' Burke declared himself actuated by the same motives, and determined by the same reasons as Mr. Fox, to retire from the Ministry. He made a very able and brilliant speech, full of wit, satire, and argument, 'against the Prime Minister; contending that his conduct had been a composition of hypocrisy and absurdity. Although many might blame Burke and Fox for withdrawing their powers from Administration, merely because they had been thwarted in some measures, and in one appointment, when the country so much wanted the services of its greatest men, yet no one can charge them with artifice or duplicity; what they did, they did boldly and avowedly.

However much several members disapproved of certain parts of the King's speech, considering unanimity as necessary at so critical a juncture, no one proposed an amendment. When the conclusion of peace

was announced to Parliament, the terms on which it had been made excited great disapprobation, both from Burke, Fox, and their friends; and from Lord North and his friends. Pitt, with the assistance of hardly any very able man but Dundas, had, in the House of Commons, to cope with the combined strength of the North and Fox parties. The Ministerial speakers defended the peace as the best that could be attained in the circumstances of the country. The coalesced opponents maintained that our resources were still in a flourishing state, and that the army and navy were in the best condition, and could easily stand the brunt of another campaign. This favourable view of our situation was certainly much more consistently exhibited by Lord North, Mr. Courtenay, Mr. Adam, and Lord Mulgrave, who had uniformly maintained that our army and navy were in a vigorous state, than by Burke, Fox, and Sheridan, who had as uniformly maintained that they were in an exhausted state during many years, when the national finances had certainly not been so much drained, nor so many of its

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