of his subjects had given him the lie, applied1
ministry for the protection to which every Englishman had a right.
How to proceed became a question.
as a lawyer, knew, and ‘declared that general warrants were illegal;’ but conforming to ‘long established precedents,’ Halifax
, as one of the secretaries of state
, issued a general warrant for the arrest of all concerned in a publication which calm judgment3
pronounces unworthy of notice, but which all parties at that day branded as a libel.
was arrested; but on the doubtful plea that his privilege as a member of parliament had been violated, he was set at liberty by the popular Chief Justice Pratt
The opponents of the ministry hastened to renew the war of privilege against prerogative, with the advantage of being defenders of the constitution on a question affecting a vital principle of personal freedom.
The cry for ‘Wilkes
and Liberty’ was heard in all parts of the British
In the midst of the confusion, Grenville
set about confirming himself in power5
by diligence in the public business.
‘His self-conceit,’ said Lord Holland afterwards,6
‘as well as his pride and obstinacy, established him.’
For the joint secretary of the treasury he selected an able and sensible lawyer, Thomas Whately
, in whom he obtained a firm defender and political friend.
His own secretary as Chancellor