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[258] his importance from his rank and wealth, some popu-
chap. XII.} 1765. May 15.
larity and his connection with Pitt, already began to be estranged from his brother-in-law, whom he envied and disliked, and reconciled to Grenville, his brother and apparent heir, whom he was now well pleased to see in office. His mind, like Bedford's, was haunted with the spectre of Bute's influence, and the whim seized him to gratify his capricious resentment to the utmost, and show his importance by creating embarrassments. He scouted the idea of placing at the head of the Treasury a man like North umberland, whom he looked upon as Bute's lieutenant; while in his heart he was resolved to prevent the dismissal of his brother. Yet, at Cumberland's request, he agreed to hold a consultation with Pitt.

This happened on Wednesday, when the king, on his way to accept the act for a regency, found himself followed by a crowd of weavers, who beset the House of Parliament. They piqued themselves on showing him respect; but they vowed vengeance against Bedford, whom they insulted, and stoned in his chariot, so that he narrowly escaped with his life.

The next day, while Temple, avoiding every

pledge on his own part, was concerting with Pitt preliminary questions, the mob of weavers paraded the streets of London. Bedford himself repaired with complaints to the king, and Grenville also remonstrated; but the king's emotion and disorder betrayed his settled purpose of changing the government. The ministry had never been, and was not then, a thoroughly united body: Grenville, whom the king had originally chosen as a counterpoise to Bedford,

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