than on this occasion.
His experienced hand2
had been able to mould and direct events so as to thwart the policy of Pitt
by the concerted junction of Bute
and all the great Whig Lords.
The minister attributed his defeat not so much to the king and Bute
as to Newcastle
; yet the king was himself a partner in the conspiracy; and as he rejected the written advice that Pitt
had given him, the man ‘whose3
august presence overawed majesty,’ resolved to resign.
On Monday, the fifth day of October, William Pitt
, now venerable from years and glory, the greatest minister of his century, one of the few very great men of his age, among orators the only peer of Demosthenes
, the man without title or fortune, who, finding England
in an abyss of weakness and disgrace, conquered Canada
and the Ohio valley
and Guadaloupe, and sustained Prussia
from annihilation, humbled France
, gained the dominion of the seas, won supremacy in Hindostan, and at home vanquished faction, stood in the presence of George to resign his power.
It was a moment to test the self-possession and manly vigor of the young and inexperienced king.
He received the seals with ease and firmness, without requesting that Pitt
should resume his office; yet he manifested concern for the loss of so valuable a minister, approved his past services, and made him an unlimited offer of rewards.
At the same time, he expressed himself satisfied with the opinion of the majority of his council, and declared he should have found himself under the greatest difficulty how to