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‘ [214] lead.’ But now he encouraged Grafton to slight
Chap. XXXVII.} 1768. Oct.
their justly dissatisfied benefactor, as ‘brooding over his own suspicions and discontent.’1 ‘I will never retire upon a scanty income,’ he added, ‘unless I should be forced by something more compelling than the Earl of Shelburne's removal. You are my pole star, Chatham being eclipsed.’2

Grafton wished earnestly to gain Chatham's acquiescence in the proposed change, and repaired to Hayes to give assurances, that no new ‘bias’ swayed him from the connection, to which his faith was pledged. ‘My Lord's health,’ answered the Countess, ‘is too weak to admit of any communication of business; but I am able to tell your Grace, from my Lord himself, that Lord Shelburne's removal will never have his consent.’ The King awaited anxiously the result of the interview;3 and notwithstanding the warning, Shelburne was removed. To Camden's surprise,4 the resignation of Chatham instantly followed. Grafton and the King interposed with solicitations;5 but even the hope of triumphing over the aristocracy had lost its seductive power; and the Earl remained inflexible. Camden knew that he ought to have retired also;6 he hushed his scruples by the thought that

1 Lord Camden to the Duke of Grafton, 29 Sept. 1768; in Campbell's Chancellors, v. 277.

2 Camden to Grafton, 4 September, 1768. The date of 4 Sept. seems to me the correct one.

3 Lady Chatham's Memorandum of a conversation with the Duke of Grafton, 9 Oct. 1768. Chatham Corr. III. 337.

4 Camden to the Duke of Grafton, 14 Oct. 1768. ‘Though I was apprehensive that Lord Shelburne's dismissal would make a deep impression upon Lord Chatham's mind, yet I did not expect this sudden resignation.’

5 King to Chatham, 4 Oct. 1768 Chatham Corr. III. 343.

6 Camden to Chatham, 20 March, 1768. ‘Indeed, my dear Lord, our seals ought to go together,’ &c. Chat. Corr. III. 325.

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