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constitution, it is a masquerade, a mummery, a piece of buffoonery, used to burlesque the constitution, and to ridicule every form of government. A phantom conjured up to affright propriety, and to drive it from our isle. An hideous spectre, to which it might be said in the words of Mackbeth to Banquo's ghost
Avaunt! and quit my sight! Let the earth
And so, in fact, it was with this political spectre; its bones are marrowless; its blood is cold; it has no speculation in its eyes. It itachimera, a monster taken outof the depths of hell."
Mr. Pitt having, in one of those warm altercations that so frequently occurred at this period, denied that it was either a fraud, or a fiction, to employ the great seal as the organ of the King, under the sanction of the united wisdom of both houses, Mr. Burke said in reply,
" that such a plan deserved a worse name than that of a fiction or phantom. They were going to create Milton's monsters of Sin and Death-death to the constitution, and sin to the feelings of the country. What must be the progeny, but innumerable barking monsters, howling at, and endeavouring to destroy every principle of the constitution ? They were going to steal the great seal—to commit a forgery and fraud -to support violence—and to carry them on to their climax of villainy. If the house wished to preserve unity in the empire, they ought to appoint a person who was interested in the empire to represent the King: they ought to trust, upon his word, the Prince of Wales, whom hereafter they must trust without; and thus, they would save their country, and none would suffer but ambitious men. The danger, which had been talked of, if they were to address the Prince of Wales to take the regency upon him, reminded Mr. Burke of the giant who used to swallow a dozen windmills for breakfast every morning, and was afterwards choaked by a small bit of butter in July.'
* Mr. Burke's exertions in behalf of the Prince of Wales, at this period, were not con. fined to his speeches in the House of Commons, but he likewise employed his pen in vindicating the Prince's claim to the regency. Ainong the numberless attacks on Mr. Pitt, which appeared at this time, the keenest and the most unanswerable appeared in the form of “ Questions to Mr. Gill,” who had distinguished him. self in the defence of administration. The fola lowing is a copy of those curious interrogato. ries, which were generally attributed to Mr. Burke, and indeed carry with them strong in, ternal evidence of being the production of his mind. 66 Do you not know, that the very same pre
But notwithstanding all the efforts of Mr. Burke, Mr. Fox, and the
tences, which are set up for excluding the royal family from the temporary representation of the crown in giving assent to acts the most immedi. ately concerning the exercise of the rights of the crown, may be used for depriving the whole house of Brunswick of the right of succession settled by law ?-Do you really think that the men of spirit in this country will tamely suffer themselves to be stripped of the inestimable se. curity they have for all the blessings of the re. volution, in order to turn this flourishing kingdom, under the false appearance of a republic, into a despotism for Mr. Pitt, and a job for you, and such as you ?
“ Do you not know that a man may live under this malady of madness for many years ; and that the pretext of to-day may serve for the deceit of to-morrow; and that when the suc. cessor, after perhaps twenty years, comes to his empty name of inheritance, he will find the same conspiracy of wicked and ungrateful ser. vants, strengthened by time and the perversion of all the favours of the crown, in full posses. sion of power, so as hardly to leave him the name of a king?
“ For that purpose did Pitt declare, that every individual in the kingdom (you, Mr. Gill, for instance) had as good a right to be elected regent as the Prince of Wales ? Is not that position as false as it is invidious, insolent, and audacious ?
other opposition orators, Mr. Pitt's resolutions were carried by triumphant
6 When did you, even in the most disorderly and distant times, hear that a parliament was held, and the royal assent given, during the in. capacity of the king, to any acts, except by the eldest prince of the blood, then of full age, and then in England?
“ Is not the pretended grant of the regency to the Prince of Wales upon terms on which he cannot possibly exercise his trust without Pitt's consent-is not this avowedly giving the regency to Pitt ?
• Do you not know, as a fact, that Mr. Pitt has not only centred in himself the whole power of the crown as first minister, but has distributed, for power and profit, all the principal de. partments of the state, and every honour and distinction, among his own relations and kin. dred? Is not his cousin-german lord lieute. nant of Ireland, with the whole patronage of that kingdom?- Is not General Pitt commander in chief there?—Is not his brother Lord Cha. tham, first lord of the Admiralty, with all the patronage of the navy!-Is not Lord Sidney, Lord Chatham's father-in-law, principal secretary of state, with all the patronage of Canada, Nova Scotia, and all the West India islands ?-Is not his cousin-german, Mr. Grenville, paymaster, with the reversion, on a very old life, of remembrancer in Ireland, a place for life of