Page images
PDF
EPUB

Proof even against the known prostitution of the English House of Lords, the members of wbich sat in judgment in the three-fold character of prosecutors, judges, and jury. Virtue-proof indeed must be the woman that can stand such a scrutiny.

But I must not so lightly pass over all those persecutions. In the first place, it is well known that you pensioned the Douglases for their perjuries, and with the knowledge that they had perjured themselves to gratify your desires. This of itself forms a proof that you have been the grand instigator of all the perjuries that have been sworn against her Majesty. It is self-evident, that no Minister, however base, would meddle with such an affair, unless it was with the hope of obtaining additional favour from you. It is clear, that no other individual could have felt any personal interest in the destruction of the Queen but yourself. But what shall be said of your present string of foreign witnesses, each of whom proclaimed his or her own infamy? What can be thought of the vile Majocchi obtaining, no doubt at your request, a personal interview with you on the very day that the remains of your aged father were consigued to the tomb? The death of your father seems to have been timed to the completion of a new string of charges against your wife; and his sudden change and dissolution was not a little wondered at, after his having enjoyed so sound a constitution to such an advanced age. Although your kingly etiquette might have prevented you from attending his interment as a mourner, it might have been expected that you should observe and reflect upon his obsequies with something like filial decency at home. Singularly viudictive must be that bosom that could not lay aside the furthering of the object of degrading a wife for one day, and one such a day as that! How dreadfully wicked must the anxiety have been, that, whilst every bell in England was tolling the funeral knell of a departed sovereign--whilst every place of worship displayed its sable colours-and wbilst all business was suspended, the son and successor should forget all that was passing but the endeavour to get rid of bis wife. It inight be justly said, that the funeral knell which tolled its solemn peal to announce the departure of the father, performed the double task of announcing the direful sway of the successor. The sable cloth which our churches displayed seemed pot only to mourn the departed sovereign, but to anticipate the disgraceful fate of their new head, and the common disgrace which has consequently been entailed on them by his forbidding their prayers for the Queen.

you must

It should be also observed, that the Ministers and their minions in the House of Lords who have performed the aforementioned threefold character of prosecutors, judge, and jury, have acted the part of slanderers as well. Nothing bas been heard from their mouths in their different circles but a continued series of slanders levelled at her Majesty, such as even the Italian witnesses have not been asked to swear to. Your brothers have been prominent as slanderers, and even your own ears bave tingled with the stories whicb have known to be invention, and which, bad they been facts instead of fabrications, you ought rather to have blushed at bearing. The slander of your wife has been the only sure passport to your favours, and your own infamy has been the price of your friendship. How singular is the contrast of the actual and intended use of the erections in Cotton Garden: intended as a preparation for a grand royal festival, but converted to a receptacle for the barbingers of royal disgrace. All your plans and schemes seem to be frustrated by some unseen and unerring power. The Queen triumphs in her native innocence, whilst you are cast down with the weight of your own conscience, and the public odium. The whole nation resounds with long live the Queen, but not a word for the King, but in the shape of irony, disapprobation, and execration. The force and strength of public opinion is just beginning to display itself-a large portion of the Printing Press bas dared to be free in this very worst of times—and you have fallen, justly fallen, a conquered and vicious enemy. The public anxiety and curiosity is now become very great to see what your next effort will be:

hell :

“ Severe decrees may keep our tongues in awe :
Bat to our thoughts what edict can give law ?
Ev’n you yourself to your own breast shall tell
Your crimes, and your own conscience be your
Amidst your train this unseen judge shall wait,
Examine how you came by all your state;
Upbraid your impious pomp, and in your ear
Will holloa rebel ! traitor! murderer!
Your ill-got power, wan looks, and cares shall bring;
Known but by discontent to be a king:
Of crowds afraid, yet anxious when alone,

You'll sit and brood your sorrows on a throne."
This, or deep repentance and atonement awaits you.
You have no alternative but to ask forgiveness from your
wife and the country, or

In considering you in the character of a monarch, I find nothing to applaud, but much to censure ; nothing to enliven the gloom of the former part of the picture. but much to heighten its sombre aspect. You have shewn yourself the ready coadjutor of the schemes of all the Continental Despots, and have given Castlereagh a carte blanche to do as be likes with his foreign correspondents. You do not seem, from the moment of your reaching the Regency to the present moment, to have had any one prevailing object near your beart, but the getting rid of your wife. Every other circumstance you have left to the absolute pleasure of your ministers, on the condition that they should assist you in accomplishing your favourite wish. You have tacitly acquiesced in all the outrages committed by those ministers for the last four years; and now they have such a bold upon you, that you dare not dismiss them. They absolutely rule you instead of you being their Sovereign. They can all say with Vilmacarti, the Italian advocate, that they hold the Crown of England in their possession, or power; for they are privy to all the vices in which you have indulged, and could no doubt put the seal of everlasting shame and disgrace upon your forehead, by the knowledge of your instructions relative to the treatment of the Queen.

You, Sir, are on the vortex of ruin, or in the very gulph; and so many warning voices have been lifted up to you, that there is scarcely an individual in the country who feels any thing like sympathy for you. None care what becomes of you. The people of Great Britain and Ireland are quite disgusted, and even your friends, your hired and well paid friends, do not venture to say a word about your private character, but confine themselves to talking about wbut they call your constitutional character. You seem totally insensible to all the exemplary part of your character, or that which attracts the most curiosity and attention from the great body of the people, and perhaps console yourelf with the idea, that as you are but little seen, you are but little thought of But this is not the case ; every cottager in the country cries out, “ Why what a vile and bad man the King must be, to treat his wife in this manner!" Every peaceable and well disposed man, who is a husband and a father of a family, although he might never interfere in the politics of the State, yet he feels your conduct towards the Queen as a blow to his domestic happiness. Every humane and feeling mind must inevitably array itself against you. It is impossible to be neuter when such an example is displayed by the Chief

Magistjate of the state. A man in a humble sphere of life might ill treat bis wite, and his neighbours content themselves with holding him in contempt and calling bim a brute: but as to you, you have mounted the piopacle of slander and wickedness in attempting to destroy your wife, and execrations and curses pour in upon you from all parts of Europe and America.

Politics, or political principle, you seem to have lost sight of entirely, even if ever you had an idea on political economy. Perhaps you think your ministers the proper persous to attend to tbis, whilst you spend your time about fashions for the dress of your military and female dolls. You appear to have an idea that a standing army of one hundred thousand men, is kept up for your individual protection and amusement, and that like a child with his dolls and his toys, your only business is to decorate them as fantastically as possible. But, beware, armies are like edge-tools, with which a fool or a rogue might do much mischief, or perhaps give himself a death wound. One would think that Spain, Naples, and Portugal, might have afforded you some unpleasant dreams on this head. If your ears are shut to the groans of the people of these countries, those groaps reach the ears of the soldiers in a forcible manner. They have wives, children, brothers, sisters, and aged parents, among the sufferers. They must be as mad and as vicious as yourself, and more so, if they can turn a deaf ear to those groans. Recollect, a reformed Parliament, in which the people might be fully represented, bas the power of conferriog a much greater benefit on an enlightened soldiery for any past services, than even you in your kingly capacity can confer. See wbat the Cortes of Spain has done for the Spanish army. Last year, that army was both ill clothed and ill fed; at present, each soldier who assisted in the Revolution, has the cheerivg prospect of becoming a freeholder, and of holding an independent rank in the society of which he is a worthy member. You individually have not the power of continuing for a second year the small pittance as a pension to a soldier, however he might serve you. mote him for the moment, but the next moment he might find himself reduced to his former situation. There is no stability in your power: favours from you are like the operations of chance, and be who put bis sole trust in them is a fool. A people fully represented in Parliament, are alone omnipotent, their decrees are eternal and irresistible; but what you might have given away to day might to morrow

You might pro

be demanded back again, on the ground that you had no just right to make any such grant. The object and purpose of such grant is liable to be scrutinised, and if found to have been for some vicious and immoral purpose, the individual might lose bis reward and receive the punishment due to his offences at the same time. These are ticklsih times, and to me it appears that you are continually blind or drunk to all that is passing. You seem to think of nothing but the mere gratification of your appetite, and the man who is of this disposition, is unfit for society, and a companion only fit for the beasts of the forest.

You ought to bave observed, that although your creatures in the House of Lords were all willing enough, for your gratification, to slander and abuse the Queen, yet not one of them had the hardihood to defend your conduct, but studiously endeavoured to avoid the mention of your name. The people can see through all this: it is vain for all your hired scribes to talk about the opinions of the peers of the realın, of the pobility and clergy; there is scarce a man in England but can infer the facts of the case as well from such writers, as from the honest and unpaid contributors to the Press. The day of delusion is past; it is impossible to add any thing new in that commodity; and the impressions of the old are fast wearing away.

I have written to you not in the language of courtiers, but in those terms which my mind has dictated as honest truths. If you were a wise and a good man, or if you

bad a spark of good principle in you, you could not disapprove my unvarnisbed statement of facts. I have just heard that your Attorney General has resolved to calumniate my wife in the same false, malicious and scandalous manner, as he has been lately ordered to calumniate yours: but I have this consolation that Mrs. Carlile will be like unto the Queen, in one sense of the word, namely, the more she is persecuted, the brighter she will appear, and the more valuable as a member of this community. I trouble as little at seeing my wife persecuted, as you do in persecuting yours. I rejoice to think she is an object virtuous enough for the disapprobation of your Ministers, and sball prize her in the same proportion as they prosecute.

I am, Sir,
The Enemy of every vicious Monarch,

R. CARLILE.

« PreviousContinue »