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Secret Committees, or otherwise, respecting the King's situation, and that after that precedents must be searched.

Fox arrived yesterday morning early, having come in little more than nine days from Bologna. He expected, it is said, from the accounts which he had received, to find the King dead. Ever most affectionately yours,

W. W. G.


Whitehall, Nov. 26th, 1788. MY DEAR BROTHER,

I sit down to write a few words, because I know it is a satisfaction to you to hear from me in such a moment as this, although I have nothing particular to say.

The situation of the King continues to be such as I described it yesterday; and Warren told Pitt yesterday, that the physicians could now have no hesitation in pronouncing that the actual disorder was that of lunacy; that no man could pretend to say, that this was, or was not incurable; that he saw no immediate symptoms of recovery ; that the King might never recover; or, on the other hand, that he might recover at any one moment. With this sort of information we shall probably have to meet Parliament. I much hope that the previous examination by the Privy Council may be judged sufficient, without any further inquiry into the particulars of a subject which one so little wishes to have discussed.

I have no other news of any sort.

I do not know, whether I mentioned to you in my last letter, that I tried, but to no purpose, to make out that part of yours which was written in the new cypher; my cypher, which you sent over to me, being wholly spoilt in the pasting. I must, therefore, beg you to write in the old cypher, with the alterations I suggested.

Ever yours,

W. W. G.


Whitehall, Nov. 27th, 1788. A MY DEAR BROTHER,

The accounts of the King's situation continue to be so much the same as for the last two or three days, that it now appears perfectly plain that we shall be under the necessity of bringing forward some measure for an intermediate Government immediately after the 4th ; and that there can be no further adjournment.

The Prince of Wales has sent a letter to the Chancellor, desiring that all the members of the Cabinet may attend at Windsor to-day; but this I imagine (and, indeed, his letter conveys it), has no relation to any other subject, but to an idea of moving the King to Kew, where he can take the air without being overlooked, as is the case at Windsor. I have nothing new to write to you on other subjects, though I believe I shall have in a day or two; probably by Sunday's messenger. Ever most affectionately yours,

W. W. G.


Whitehall, Nov. 28th, 1788. MY DEAR BROTHER,

The Ministers were all sent for to Windsor yesterday by the Prince, in order to give their advice with respect to moving the King. They were detained so late, that Pitt went to Salt Hill to sleep there; and is not yet returned, at least not to his own house, so that I have not seen him.

I had a note from him yesterday evening, to say that they had not seen the Prince, he having sent a written message to them by the Duke of York. It related to the removal. He says, that the opinion of the physicians, particularly of Addington, who had been desired to come over that day from Reading, was favourable as to a possibility, and even a prospect of recovery, and clear for removing him as soon as possible.

We are still in the dark, as to the Prince of Wales's intentions; though what passed yesterday confirms my opinion. The general language leans to negotiation.


Whitehall, Nov. 29th, 1788. MY DEAR BROTHER,

I received your letter of the 23rd, by the messenger only this morning, and have sent the enclosed, which, as you will have seen, exactly tallies with the ideas which I have stated to you in some of my letters. I shall write to you to-morrow, being Sunday, when a messenger would of course be sent with the official bulletin, and as you may very probably receive that letter as soon as this, I think it unnecessary to fatigue either you or myself with figures, especially as I have nothing very material to say, except a confirmation, from my subsequent conversation with Pitt, of the ideas which I mentioned to you yesterday, particularly with respect to Addington's opinion, which seems to have encouraged the rest to speak out. Addington told Pitt that he had himself kept a house for the reception of these unhappy people for seven years. That during that period, he had hardly ever had fewer than ten or twelve with him, and that of all those one only was not cured, he having died in the house of bursting a blood vessel. He said that the symptoms, as they at present appeared, were those of a morbid humour, flying about and irritating the nerves. The physicians desired Pitt to see the King yesterday, which he did, and found him, though certainly in a state of derangement, yet far better than he had expected from the accounts. It is not yet settled whether he shall be removed, as he has expressed some reluctance to it, and the physicians are extremely averse to any force.

We are still under some uncertainty whether or not to propose a further adjournment; in the meanwhile we have thought it absolutely necessary to summon all our friends, as without their attendance, we should not even have the decision of that question in our own hands. Ever most affectionately yours,

W. W. G.


Whitehall, Nov. 30th, 1788. MY DEAR BROTHER,

There is no particular account of the King this morning, He was yesterday evening removed to Kew. There was considerable difficulty in persuading him to agree to this removal, but it was at last accomplished without violence. Pitt saw bim again at Windsor before his removal, and thought him rather less well in his manner than on the preceding day. Addington's conversation is still such as to show that he thinks the probabilities greatly in favour of his recovery. He mentioned particularly to Pitt, that he had in his house one person whose case appeared to him exactly to resemble the King's, and that this person had been cured.

We are still much undetermined about the time of bringing forward the decisive measures. The general leaning of people's minds appears to be for delay, and there is not anything that can perhaps absolutely be said to require that immediate steps should be taken. There are, however, several points of foreign business which seem to press considerably, and there seems little reason to hope that this situation will be at all altered within such a time as it would be possible to wait. I am rather inclined towards bringing the business forward on Thursday; and yet I am very apprehensive of the effect which might be produced by any appearance or imputation of precipitancy.

When the Cabinet went down to Windsor two days ago, in consequence of the Prince of Wales's letter, he did not see them, but sent them a written message by the Duke of York, respecting the King's removal. This message, whether accidentally or not, was couched in terms that were thought a little royal. Some caution was thought necessary in wording the answer to avoid the style of giving His Royal Highness advice, or of acknowledging any authority in him.

You will have heard, in all probability, much on the subject of the Chancellor. His situation is a singular one. It is unquestionably true that he has seen Fox, and I believe he has also seen Sheridan repeatedly, and certainly the Prince of Wales. And of all these conversations he has never communicated one word to any other member of the Cabinet. Yet I am persuaded that he has as yet made no terms with them, and that whenever they come to that point they will differ. With this clue, however, you will be at no loss to guess where the Prince acquires his knowledge of the plans of Regency which are to be proposed, because, even supposing the Chancellor not to have directly betrayed the individual opinions of his colleagues, yet still his conversation upon these points, in all of which he has explicitly agreed with the opinions of Pitt, must lead to the communication of the plans in agitation. I am, however, rather inclined to believe that Cuninghame's correspondent has taken by guess one out of a variety of reports circulated, and that he has been right by accident. The general belief of the Opposition certainly is, as you may

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