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[410] have acted, had that council concurred as fully in
chap. XVII.} 1762. Oct.
supporting the measure proposed, as they had done in rejecting it. The Great Commoner began to reply; but the anxious and never ceasing application, which his post as the leading minister had required, combined with repeated and nearly fatal attacks of hereditary disease, had completely shattered his constitution, and his nervous system was becoming tremulous and enfeebled. ‘I confess, Sir,’ said he, ‘I had but too much reason to expect your Majesty's displeasure. I did not come prepared for this exceeding goodness; pardon me, Sir, it overpowers me, it oppresses me;’ and the man who by his words and his spirit had restored his country's affairs, and lifted it to unprecedented power and honor, to extended dominion and proud self-reliance, burst into tears.1 On the next day, the king seemed impatient to bestow some mark of favor; and as Canada had been acquired by the ability and firmness of his minister, he offered him that government, with a salary of five thousand pounds. But Pitt, whose proud hardihood never blenched in the presence of an adversary, had a heart that overflowed with fond affection for his wife and children. The state of his private affairs was distressed in consequence of the exemplary disinterestedness of his public conduct. ‘I should be doubly happy,’ he avowed, ‘could I see those dearer to me than myself comprehended in that monument of royal approbation and goodness.’ A peerage, therefore, was conferred on lady Hester, his wife, with a grant of three thousand pounds on the plantation duties, to be paid annually during the lives of herself, her husband and

1 Annual Register for 1761.—The Grenville Papers, I. 413.

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