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[93] to an audience; now that he had failed, he
Chap XXX.} 1767. July.
was received to make confession, that the country required a strong, united, and permanent administration and that he himself could not form one of any kind. He did not omit to add some reproaches about the past; but the King was in the best humor. He bowed very graciously, and Rockingham bowed, and so they parted. ‘What did the King say to you?’ asked Grafton and Conway eagerly, as Rockingham came out; and the only answer he could make was— ‘Nothing.’

Once more Rockingham was urged to join with the friends of Chatham;1 but he was unaccommodating and impracticable.2 ‘He has managed it ill,’ thought Hardwicke.3 Richmond and others were anxious and uneasy.4 A leader of a party had never

done so much to diminish its influence. Very honest, truly liberal, of a merciful and generous nature, his intellect bore no comparison to his virtues, his conduct no analogy to his good intentions. Deceived by his reverence for the past, without ability to plan a system suited to his age, he left the field open to those who wished ill to liberty in America and in England. His enemies were pleased, for he had acted exactly as their interests required; the King was never in better spirits.5

Grafton, too, obtained the credit of moderation by his seeming readiness to retire; and, after the rejection of all his offers to Rockingham, people saw

1 Compare Durand to Choiseul, 3 August, 1767.

2 Whately to Temple, 30 July, 1767; in Lyttelton, 729.

3 Life of Lord Chancellor Hardwicke, III. 459.

4 E. Burke to Rockingham, 18 August, 1767.

5 E. Burke to Rockingham, 1 August, 1767.

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