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[145]

When Grenville, after his long and anxious

chap. VIII.} 1763. Aug.
suspense, was called in, he could think only of his griefs, pleading his adhesion to the king, on Pitt's leaving the cabinet in 1761; the barbarous usage he had in consequence received from his family; the assurances given at that time by Bute, that his honor should be the king's honor, his disgrace the king's disgrace. The king bowing to him, stopped his complaints by observing, ‘It is late;’ and as the afflicted minister was leaving him, said only ‘Good morrow, Mr. Greenville, good morrow, Mr. Greenville,’ for he never called him by his right name.

Whether Pitt, who had himself attained a kind of royalty, and was ever mindful to support his own majesty,1 pleased himself with seeing the great Whig families at his heels; or, which is more probable, aware that the actual ministry could not go on, was himself deceived by his own presumptuously hopeful nature into a belief that those who made the overture must carry it through, he summoned Newcastle, Devonshire, Rockingham, and Hardwicke2 to come to London as his council.

From his own point of view, there was no unreasonableness3 in his demands. But to the court it seemed otherwise. On Sunday evening Grenville found the king in the greatest agitation. ‘Rather than submit to the hard terms proposed by Pitt,’ said he, ‘I would die in the room I now stand in.’4 Early in the morning of the twenty-ninth, Bute, through Beckford, urged Pitt to be content with filling up the places of the two Secretaries of State, and putting

1 Lyttelton to Royston, in Phillimore, II. 646.

2 Hardwicke in Harris, III. 379.

3 W. Gerard Hamilton in Chatham Cor. II. 378.

4 Grenville Papers, II. 197.

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