military men, after giving them the most perfect
knowledge of the whole matter under consideration, with all its circumstances.’
The warning had no influence, for the king, in his dauntless self-will, would not consult those who were likely to disagree with him. A naval force, equal to the requirements of the governor of South Carolina
for the recovery of that province, was also prepared.
Of the hearty concurrence of parliament no doubt was harbored.
‘I am fighting the battle of the legislature,’ said the king; ‘I therefore have a right to expect an almost unanimous support; I know the uprightness of my intentions and am ready to stand any attack of ever so dangerous a kind.’
The good sense of the English
people reasoned very differently, and found an organ among the ministers themselves.
The duke of Grafton
, by letter, entreated Lord North to go great lengths to bring about a durable reconciliation, giving as his reasons that ‘the general inclination of men of property in England
differed from the declarations of the congress in America
little more than in words; that many hearty friends to government had altered their opinions by the events of the year; that their confidence in a strong party among the colonists, ready to second a regular military force, was at an end; that if the British
regular force should be doubled, the Americans
, whose behavior already had far surpassed every one's expectation, could and would increase theirs accordingly; that the contest was not only hopeless, but fraught with disgrace; that the attendant expenses would lay upon the country a burden which nothing could justify but an insult from a foreign ’