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dford having, like Edmund Burke, caught the more liberal views of political economy which were then beginning to prevail, especially in France and in Scotland, spoke on the side of freedom of trade; and the bill was refused a second reading. The silk weavers were exasperated; professing to believe that Bedford had been bought by the French. On Tuesday they went in a large body to Richmond 14. to petition the king for redress. Cumberland, at that time, was explaining his commission to Rockingham and Newcastle, both of whom were zealous for the proposed change. The Earl of Albemarle, therefore, communicated, in his name, with Pitt, who terminated a conversation of four hours without an engagement, yet without a negative. Edmund Burke, as he watched the negotiation, complained of Pitt's hesitancy, and derided his fustian. Temple and Grafton were summoned to town. Of Grafton, Cumberland asked, if a ministry could be formed out of the minority, without Pitt; and received for ans
ear of mistakes, Rockingham wrote with a pencil these words: Lord Rockingham was authorized by his majesty, on Friday last, to say that his majesty was for the repeal. It is very true, said the king, as he read the paper; but I must make an addition to it; upon which he took a pen, and wrote at the end of it, the conversation having been only concerning that or enforcing. He added, I desire you would tell Lord Strange, that I am now, and have been heretofore, for modification. King to Rockingham in Albemarble, i. 302. So Rockingham was disavowed, and the opposition declared more than ever that the ministers counterfeited as well as prostituted the sentiments of the king, whose unwritten word they would not trust, Lloyd's Conduct, &c., 134. and whose written word convicted them of falsehood. On the same day, Bedford and Grenville went to an interview with Bute, whom they had so hated and chap. XXIII.} 1766. Feb. wronged. It was a proud moment for Bute, to find his aid soli