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the office comfortably or usefully. He accordingly returned to England, and arrived early in 1786. He laid before the Chairs (as the phrase is) his propositions,-the conditions on which he was willing to undertake the Government. These were, an increased power to the first in council; the subordination of the Commander-in-chief; a change in the members of the Board, and particularly General Hope's and Mr Macpherson's removal. The Ministry having consulted on these points, fixed a day to confer with him.
In the mean time, a debate took place, in which Mr Fox once more loaded his Madras administration with ample praises; but as the other party now knew their man, and as indeed he was on the spot, to counteract the bad effects of such encomiums, by such positive assurances and explanations as might be required, they seem to have passed over his head this time without doing him any material injury. Accordingly, the ministers informed him at their meeting, that they agreed to his first proposition, of allowing the Governor-General to act upon his single responsibility, on great occasions; but as to the other points, they either wholly declined touching them, or waved the discussion for the present. They, however, expressed great goodwill towards Lord Macartney, and repeated their offer of the place. Upon this his Lordship seems to have been fully satisfied with the fate of his former propositions; but he had in the mean time discovered a new one. He had found that he should have many enemies, and all active against his power; that it would be necessary for his own reputation, and for the public service, that he should receive such a distinguished mark of favour, as would unequivocally show to the world,' how high he stood with the Crown, the Ministry, and the Company.' He disclaimed all idea of starting difliculties, or making what is called terms or bargains;' he was not 'that sort of man;' but he had hoped they would have anticipated his ideas on this point. He added, that the distinguished mark to which he alluded, he had long looked to as an object of 'honest ambition, and had therefore preferred distant, laborious, and troublesome employments abroad, as more likely, from the op'portunities they might afford for distinguished exertions, to lead him to it, than the usual routine of the boards and parliamentary offices at home; he observed, that he had passed twenty-two years of his life in public business of that kind, and hoped it was not ' unreasonable to aspire to the king's favour, as a reward for past 'service, and an encouragement to future.' (I. 325, $26.) He proceeded, of course, to disavow all eagerness after the office,-talked much of his health and the difficulties of the station,-and descanted after an edifying manner on his indifference to wealth,
and his love of tranquillity, and taste for domestic pursuits,-and the other established topics upon such occasions. When he had made an ending, he perceived, by the usual symptoms, that the minister had every desire to oblige him, but laboured under some difficulty in assenting to his views. He accordingly began his retreat, and accomplished it like a skilful tactician, in very good order, under a fire of compliments to whomsoever they might appoint instead of him, and of protestations that he had not the slightest disinclination to the ministry as it then stood;' but would support them at all times, consistent and agreeable with those principles which, through the whole course of his life, had uniformly guided him.' Nay, so perfectly regular and courtier-like were his whole proceedings, that, three days after this interview, when he heard of Lord Cornwallis being appointed, he went to a large evening party where Lady Macartney was; and, being unable to get near her, took out a card and wrote with his pencil upon the back of it as follows. "I am the happiest man in England at this hour. Lord Cornwallis, I hear, is Governor-General of India." The card,' says Mr Barrow, is still in her Ladyship's possesion, with the pencil-writing upon it;'-' and what better proof can any man have of his Lordship having exulted in losing at once the government and the extra mark of favour which he had demanded?'-As such our author views it; and he adds, that this mark of favour to which Lord Macartney conceived himself entitled, even independent of public considerations, was a British Peerage; but he would not have asked it on any other grounds than the fullest conviction in his own mind,' and so forth.-We have thus minutely given the details of this curious negotiation, because it affords a very pattern of the manner in which all such matters are carried on. It is indeed perfect in all its parts; and from beginning to end, we will venture to say, it does not contain one step which is not gone through every day, in some of the ministerial closets of all well regulated governments. The narrative and remarks of Mr Barrow, furnish also a correct view of the manner in which such affairs are afterwards represented by the losing party and his friends. Upon the whole, the piece is highly instructive and amusing, and cannot fail to recall various parallel instances to almost every reader, whether in great or in little life.
Unhappily the glories of this eminent courtier, were now doomed to undergo an eclipse. As soon as he awoke from that delirium of joy into which his own failure and Lord Cornwallis's appointment had thrown him, he found himself, for the first time, neglected by his Majesty's person and government.' He was no longer the happiest man alive.' It is painful to read
the faithful Mr Barrow's wailings on this sad interruption to his official career. Notwithstanding this favourable opinion expressed by ministers; notwithstanding his long and meritorious services; nay, adds he, with some naïveté, (and it is far more wonderful) notwithstanding a steady and uniform attachment to his Majesty's person and government, Lord Macartney had the mortification of experiencing the neglect and inattention of government. We learn, after a long description of what he merited, that the cause of this neglect was Dis aliter visum est.' The gods, however, we find immediately after, allowed him a pension of 1500%. a year, through the East India Company, of which very scanty recompense' and parsimony,' says Mr Barrow, he did not complain. There was also some other cause than the gods, if we may believe the anecdote told immediately after, viz. that Mr Pitt sent him a message, desiring to know if he found himself inclined to accept of office;' to which he answered, that certainly he did, but not a seat at the India board; and he heard no more about the matter, but was suffered to cultivate his estate in the north of Ireland for five long years.
At length, in the fulness of time, it was resolved to send an ambassador to the Emperor of China, in order to establish a closer connexion with that monarch, and obtain a more extensive traffic with his subjects; or, at all events, give them a high idea of our national character and magnificence. Whatever the partial biographer may say to the contrary, this was a post of little more than mere faste, and its duties were confined almost solely to representation. It was indeed a sad falling off from the government of the East; but whether it be that seclusion from the sunshine of court favour had rendered him tractable, or, as Mr Barrow asserts, that he had laid down a rule never to refuse any public employment wherein he might be useful,' certain it is, that he accepted the appointment of ambassador to Pekin without the least hesitation;' and, wise from experience, made no other condition this time, than that he should chuse his own suite. The ministry, on their parts, were abundantly liberal, and besides servants, guards, secretaries, &c. allowed him 15000/. a year of salary, on the ground, that his Lordship should not be permitted to double the Cape at an inferior salary to what he had formerly enjoyed in those regions. Before he set sail, they also gratified him with a privy councillor's place, and raised him to the dignity of an Irish Viscount.
In this embaffy he was engaged about two years, of which only a few weeks, as is well known, were spent in China. In almoft all its main objects, the undertaking failed entirely; but certain indirect and fubordinate advantages were no doubt gained by
it. Of thefe, the knowledge which we have procured of the Chinese empire cannot strictly be reckoned as one ;-as it certainly was not in Mr Dundas's contemplation to spend money in the promotion of fcience and literature; but happily, though the more statesman-like point of an augmented traffic in hyfons and boheas was not accomplished, a multitude of valuable lights were obtained, for which the philofopher is accidentally indebted to a quarter, of all others the leaft likely to affift his views. Upon Lord Macartney's return in 1794, he was highly delighted to find that he had grown an Irish earl in his abfence:-and the year after, he was fent to Italy on an important miffion, of a delicate and confidential nature,' which Mr Barrow will by no means tell us any thing more about. If common report may be credited, this fervice formed a whimsical contrast to the laft on which he had been employed. It is generally believed, that after being fent ambaffador to the fovereign of by far the greatest resources in this globe, who rules over nearly half its inhabitants, his Lordship was defpatched upon an errand to a prince poffeffed of neither territory, fubjects, nor revenue. Having found out the court to which he had been fent, and delivered his meffage to the entire fatisfaction of his Majefty's minifters,' he returned to England; and, joyful to relate, was at length made a British Peer.
In 1797, he proceeded to the Cape of Good Hope as governor; and, as he was not to double that promontory, his falary, on this occafion, was only 10,000l., with 2000l. additional, as a penfion for life. He acquitted himself to the admiration of all, particularly Mr Barrow; gave up his falary as foon as he refigned his office; and, upon leaving the colony, made oath before the Fifcal Mynheer Van Rynevelt, that he never had received any presents, cxcept a little fruit, wine, venifon, and other trifles, which may poffibly excite the pity of fome few of his Lordship's patrons, as we dare fay it did of the Dutchman; but which offers to our view an example above all praise, of a regular place-hunter, by no means wealthy, remaining in the last act of a life devoted to his profeffion, altogether uncorrupted by half a century spent amidst the bribery of fenates, the tricks of embaffies, and the plunder of the Eaft.
He returned to England early in 1799, refolved to give up all further concern with the bustle and fatigues of public life. To this refolution he even adhered, when Mr Pitt, finding it expedient to place Mr Addington at the head of a new adminiftration,' judged that Lord Macartney was made of the very materials which he wanted; and ftrongly urged him to take the Prefidency of the Board of Controul, with a feat in the Cabinet.' Mr Barrow further infinuates, that he had a dislike to the new
miniftry; but, that any fuch feeling fhould operate with him, no man who has heard of the conftruction of that cabinet, and attended to the foregoing account of Lord Macartney's political life, can for one moment believe. However, the reft of his days were fpent in elegant retirement, and in the fociety of his friends. His infirmities increased upon him; he was deeply affected by the misfortunes on the Continent in 1805, and by Mr Pitt's death': after which, his friends defpaired of his recovery. It is to be prefumed alfo, though Mr Barrow has omitted this caufe of illnefs, that the fate of another minifter, fome months before, must have fenfibly diftreffed a man of Lord Macartney's high feelings and pure conduct in money matters-the more efpecially as with that perfonage he had been peculiarly connected for feveral years. In March 1806, he died full of years and titles,-covered with honours and badges; and, what few ftatefmen, and ftill fewer courtiers can boaft of, equally beloved by his friends, and refpected by his official connexions; having given offence to none, but fuch as were put to fhame by the contraft of his integrity, or refented the measures of his juftice.
It is not for the purpose of qualifying this praise, that we must now pick out a portion of Mr Barrow's general fummary of his character; but in order to vindicate his memory against the attacks of this most injudicious eulogift. He held the flave trade and flavery,' fays our author, in utter abhorrence; but did not entertain thofe enthufiaftic notions refpecting the abolition of the latter, which have prevailed in this country for fome few years paft and then come fome reafonings put into Lord Macartney's mouth against the emancipation of flaves; for this is the meaning of the paffage, though Mr Barrow chufes to term it a hafty abolition. He proceeds to fay, that his Lordfhip was most decidedly against the continuance of the trade;' and refolved not to allow a fingle flave ship to enter the Cape colony during his government. We are told, therefore, in his praife, that he was a decided friend of the abolition; and then comes a cafe of exception, wherein he was induced, by the urgent entreaties of the colonifts, to license one flave fhip. This, to be fure, was wrong, whatever arguments of neceffity might have been pretended. But what shall we fay of an abolitionift writing, upon this occafion, a letter, and to Mr Dundas too, containing the following paffage?
"The queftion was, whether in a state of actual neceffity we were to liften moft to the dictates of good fenfe and public duty, or to the whims and ravings of ignorance and fanaticifm? It appeared to me an indifpenfable obligation rather to provide for the fuftenance of the people committed to my care, and of his Majesty's fleet and army in effe, than to argue with myfelf what might be the poffible felicity of freedom