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Bretagne,' the English ministry highly disapproved of Sir George's conduct, and refused to ratify the treaty. With some difficulty an alteration of the exceptionable clause was obtained. Our cabinet required, that the Russian commissioners should receive new full powers: but Sir George said, that he found this as impossible, as it would be to heave Pelion upon Ossa;' and he once more risked his own safety for the public service,' by signing the amended treaty without instructions. Whether it was, however, that a change had happened in the Foreign office, or that our ministers did not like to have so signing an envoy, the ratification was sent, and at the same time another gentleman was appointed ambassador at Petersburgh. Some despatches, complaining of this, and of the other treatment he had received, are printed by Mr Barrow. They are very long, very plaintive, and very full of his own importance and praise. He is conscious of having acted in all things intrusted to his care, with the utmost integrity, vigilance, and activity, having exerted every talent which nature and education have given him, for the service of his sovereign and the interest of the public;' he is also convinced of being able to prove, that no man in his situation could have obtained what ke has done.' He intimates, that it is generally believed at Petersburgh, that he will not be permitted to depart, so great is his credit there! but this he prays God earnestly to forbid; and, notwithstanding all this, and a great deal more, he is very angry at any one thinking him dissatisfied. Quite the contrary: he is, like Sir Fretful Plagiary, rather extremely well pleased. (L. 422.) It is amusing enough, to see Mr Barrow eagerly publishing these and other compositions, which he seems to consider as highly creditable to Sir George's powers of composition. It is no doubt most wretched taste to talk in official despatches of Pelion and Ossa; to compare the Navigation-act to the bow of Ulysses; or to say, that something is as difficult, as counting the billows of the Baltic, or numbering the trees in the forest of Onega.' But surely it is somewhat more absurd to admire these passages, when written by another, and force them into a narrative as proofs of his eloquence and fancy.
Upon leaving Russia, Sir George returned to England; and, as the gentleman who had been appointed to succeed him declined the employment, Sir George was named as ambassador; but, for some reasons which do not appear, he resigned the appointment almost immediately, and very properly gave up at the same time the warrants for plate, equipage, money, &c. which he had got, receiving' (says his biographer) no advantage of kind from his appointment, except their Majesties' picture, which he particularly desired he might be allowed to keep,-set
ting thus an example of disinterestedness, perhaps the only one of the kind in the diplomatic history of this country.' So judicious a personage could not fail of pleasing the courtly; and accordingly he was soon after made happy by the hand of Lord Bute's daughter, a seat both in the English and Irish parliament, and the office of chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant. His official conduct in this situation, forms the second era of Mr Barrow's narrative, and is, as usual, altogether perfect. The administration of Lord Townsend, in which he bore so active a share, was distinguished by the very beneficial change then effected in the Irish government, of obliging the Lord Lieutenant to reside, and freeing the country from the dominion of Lords Justices. It is needless to add, that the period was a turbulent and factious one; and the ministers seem to have been fully satisfied with Sir George Macartney's management of the House of Commons. Of his oratory in that assembly, Mr Barrow gives several specimens, which certainly do not prove him to have excelled. We are told, indeed, that he was one of the few who could keep Mr Flood in order by his manly and spirited retorts; and of these a sample is given, which Mr Barrow is wonderfully delighted with. Mr Flood had made some allusion to the order of the White Eagle, and its bluetsh ribband, which Sir George had received from the king of Poland, and used of course to wear; and the spirited reply' consisted merely in saying, at great length, that the extraordinary proofs of distinction which adorn his person,' are badges of honour, not of shame and disgrace.' He, perhaps, showed only his usual prudence, in confining his speeches, much as his biographer admires them, to the Irish senate. In both the Houses of this country, he observed a constant silence; and seems to have discovered here, that if more attention were paid to business, and less to speaking, the country would be no sufferer though we should have fewer fine speeches.'
Upon his return from Ireland, he was made a Knight of the Bath, and Governor of Toome Castle, worth 13001. a year; but well merited by his disinterested conduct in giving up a larger sinecure to accommodate the Lord Lieutenant during his administration. Mr Barrow, indeed, is never satisfied, and complains of this as a scanty reward for such services as Sir George's. But he was soon after made Governor of Grenada, and an Irish Peer. When he reached the island, he found it distracted with religious animosities; and we heartily wish that certain governors would attend to the example which he set in checking and composing these pernicious differences wherever they are to be found. The two parties were Scotch protestants and French papists; and to
such a height had their feuds proceeded, though the enemy was at the gates, that the former being the most rancorous, had actually resolved to demolish all the Catholic churches. Lord Macartney, far from taking part with these wretched bigots, these slave-drivers, who presumed to persecute men for points of doctrine, immediately set about restoring harmony, by his firm and just, yet conciliatory behaviour to all parties; and in a short time succeeded so well, that no distinction of sect, or faction, or even nation, remained, to interrupt the gallant efforts which the island made against the French invasion in 1779. Let the rulers of a certain larger island, menaced with attack from the same quarter, and torn in pieces by religious differences, deign to take example by this Governor of Grenada. He was no patriot; he heartily despised every thing romantic and speculative; he ared nothing for rights, except perhaps the privileges of the peerage, and valued the people according to their various ranks and quarterings: he was as complete a courtier as any of the ministers to whom we allude: bred up in office, and running the regular course of promotion like themselves; he was, in fact, made of the very same stuff, with only a little more sense and discretion: he is, therefore, a fair example to hold up for their regard; and they may follow it without any fear of deviating into enlarged, or liberal, or uncommonly enlightened views.
Notwithstanding the greatest efforts of spirit and loyalty on the part of the inhabitants as well as the military, and a disposition of the force, apparently very judicious, they were compelled to yield to immense superiority of numbers, and could not even obtain a capitulation. Count d'Estaing behaved with great harshness, and allowed his men to plunder freely. Lord Macartney lost his plate and other property, with all his papers, and was carried a prisoner to France. He was soon released; and, on his return to England, was employed on a confidential and secret service in Ireland; after which he went into Parliament, as was his constant practice, during the short intervals of his official employments. He was thus always in sight, and in the way, and was able occasionally to render little services to the party he belonged to; that is to say, the ministry for the time being. This, indeed, was his golden rule-the corner-stone of his political system. We should have discovered it merely from the dates of his various appointments and promotions; from seeing that one ministry knighted and sent him to Russia, that another gave him the red riband and a sinecure, and employed him in Ireland; that from their successors he got an Irish peerage and two governments; while a subsequent cabinet, lasting a most auspicious length of ime, showered down upon this happy courtling, two embassies,
as many governments, two pensions, two Irish titles, and a Bri tish peerage. But his judicious biographer, afraid lest we should fail to note what he reckons one of the brightest points in his character, has called our attention to it in some passages like the following, expressive of his own, as well as his patron's just abhorrence of every thing that can be construed into opposition or independence. It is occasioned by the narrative of Lord Macartney having met with the only refusal which he ever experienced in his career of ministerial favour.
• Notwithstanding the treatment which Lord Macartney had experi enced from administration was not exactly fuch as he conceived he had a right to expect, notwithstanding the number of refpectable friends which he had among the leaders of oppofition, he never fuffered any circumftance of disappointment to betray the smallest degree of diffatisfaction, much less to incline him towards any fort of hostility to, or public difapprobation of, the measures of his Majefty's government. He was indeed of the moft conciliating difpofition; and however he might at times feel himself hurt by ill treatment, this made no difference in his conduct towards those who he had reason to believe were the caufe of it. Through the whole courfe of his life, he felt the most loyal and dutiful attachment to the King, and omitted no opportunity of expreffing his grateful fenfe of obligation to his Majefty, both in public and in private; and this attachment to the perfon of his Sove reign, added to the impreffion of the propriety of fupporting the exifting government, induced him to give to adminiftration his conftant and invariable fuffrage, except indeed in one inftance, where the public opi nion was decidedly against the government; to a fyftematic oppofition, he never gave a fingle vote in the whole course of his political life.' I. 336-7.
In consequence of such prudent and truly courtman-like principles, he was but a very short time unemployed after his return from the West Indies. A vacancy occurred in the government of Madras; and, through the influence of ministry, (though Mr Barrow must needs question this, at the time that he has clearly proved it by his narrative, (see p. 69. to 79.), he was appointed by the Court of Directors to succeed Sir Thomas Rumbold. He found the affairs of the Carnatic in a situation almost desperate; the country overrun by Hyder's troops; a scarcity, approaching to, and threatening famine, pressing upon the English settlement; disunion in the council; and, above all, a long continued system of the grossest and most complicated abuse in every department of the Company's service. The history of his government at Madras, is the best piece which we owe to Mr Barrow in this work, though, besides the tiresome repetition of panegyric, we wish he had also omitted the lame description of Hyder's invasion. It seems really to be the fate of bad writers to attempt
the subjects which the finest pens have consecrated. As soon as they resolve to be eloquent, it is odds that they hit upon the Queen of France, the age of chivalry, or the devastation of the Carnatic. It is not our intention to follow Mr Barrow through this part of his narrative, occupied as it is with transactions which are sufficiently known in the history of the times. The administration of Lord Macartney was certainly a very useful one to the country, and highly honourable to himself from its unsullied integrity. We shall extract a passage illustrative of this, and presenting, at the same time, a lively picture of the abuses prevalent among our countrymen in those remote settlements.
• His rigid adherence to covenants, and his pofitive refufal of all prefents from the first moment of his arrival in India, were matters fo new to them, that they were totally at a lofs to what motive they ought to be afcribed. At one time fuch conduct was imputed to his ignorance of the mode of governing the black people of India; at another it was fuggefted that his avarice might aim at something more than had yet been offered; and under the idea that, by encreafing the bribe, the temptation to accept it would be ftrengthened in proportion, the ufual lack of pagodas prefented to a new governor was increased to two, with an apology from the nabob for having, in the firft inftance, offered to a man of his rank in life the fum only which was due to a commoner. The embarraffment into which the refufal of 80,000l. threw the whole Durbar was extremely amufing to Lord Macartney. Another lure had been held out to him at a very early period of his government. According to a cuftom, which it feems is very common among those powers of India, who are faid to be under the Company's protection, every governor, admiral, or commander in chief who may happen to wear the infignia of any order of diftinction or merit, is almoft certain of being prefented with a diamond ftar-he is given to understand that a plain filver badge in India would be confidered as incompatible with his rank and station, and that he must therefore allow them to fupply him with one more becoming his dignity-it is faid to be " only a lit-. "tle betel among friends. Of this ceremony fome idea may be collected from Lord Macartney's account of it in a letter to a gentleman, whom he had confidered for fome time as his friend. * "Before I "conclude," fays he, " 1 muft tell you that yefterday his highness "Wallau Jah, attended with all the royal family, gave a grand break"fast to Sir Edward Hughes, Sir Eyre Coote, Sir Hector Munro, "&c. and all the principal officers of the fquadron. The latter were "invited to be witnefles of his Highness's munificence to their admiral "on account of his eminent services. The admiral arrived in his uni "form, but foon retired into, another apartment, where he was un truffed,
VOL. XI. NO. 22.
* Extract of a letter from Lord Macartney to Mr Macpherson, dated Fort St George, July 26. 1782.