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stances considered, never was surpassed by the conduct of any nation in the world. The PRODIGAL Son, as described in that most beautiful of all beautiful writings, the parable in the Gospel of St. Luke, arose and said, “I will go to my “ father, and say unto him, Father, I have sinned " against heaven and before thee, and am no
more worthy to be called thy son.” But the father, like the English nation, “while he was “yet a great way off, saw him, and ran, and fell “ on his neck, and said unto his servants, Bring “ forth the best robe and put it on him; and put a
ring on his hand; and bring hither the fatted “calf, and let us eat and be merry.” How like the conduct of this kind and good father to that of the English nation towards this prodigal Prince of Wales! If the parable had gone on to record that this prodigal afterwards became, though with experience to warn him, a greater prodigal than before, would it not also have recorded the punishment due to prodigality so incorrigible ?
62. It is impossible to put upon this letter of the prince, any other construction, than that it meaned to tell the princess, that he should no longer be be bound by his marriage-vow, and that he absolved her from hers; in short, that he meaned to live with what women he pleased, and that she might live with what men she pleased ! Besides the scandal ; besides the shame brought upon the nation; for, it must bear the shame of
within one year
being under rulers thus acting; besides these, here was laid the pretty certain foundation of a disputed succession ; and even if this were never to take place (and we very narrowly escaped it) what Englishman must not have blushed at the thought of the prospect of being governed by a king, who had given to his wife and the mother of his child (who would naturally succeed him on the throne) a license like that expressed in this letter? But, about the character or feelings of the nation, he seems, in this case at any rate, to have cared nothing. His own mere animal pleasures appear to have been his only care. Yet, he was now thirty-four years of age, and
which the sober, cautious and wise Americans have deemed, by their laws, an age sufficient for the man who is to be the Chief MAGISTRATE of their great Republic.
63. For the parties to live under the same roof, after this scandalous insult on the wife, was impossible. The Princess soon afterwards went to reside in a house at BLACKHEATH, in the parish of Greenwich, and on the side of the very beautiful Park there, which is at the distance of about five miles from St. James's Palace in Westminster. At this place, which has become memorable from the subsequent transactions connected with it, she resided in a sort of “humble retirement," as she afterwards described it, “ banished, as it were, from her husband, and
« almost estranged from the whole of the royal
family, having no means of having recourse, “either for society or advice." Besides which, she could write and speak English but very imperfectly; and as, from the very first, from the day of her arrival in this country, the Queen and the PRINCESSES showed her little or no counter ance; the nobility, notwithstanding the character and conduct that that word ought to imply, studi. ously shunned her the moment she was cast off by her husband. The people, always just when not deceived, felt for her as they ought, and upon all occasions that offered expressed their indignation at the treatment she had received. Cruel husband was not and never will be a title to respect in England. In no country is it, indeed, respected; but in England it is detested and abhorred. It was soon discovered that this un. protected foreign lady was not visited by the QUEEN; that she came into her presence only on state occasions; and that, in short, she had, of the whole family, no friend but the old king, who frequently went alone to visit her.
64. This conduct in the female part of the royal family greatly offended the nation, and justly offended it. What! the people exclaimed, do they see their daughter and sister-in-law, and she their niece and cousin too, driven from her husband's roof with a baby three months old in her arms,
of which baby they are the grandmother and the
aunts; do they see this, and feel no compassion for the sufferer, though a stranger in the land, and though they know that she has thus been punished and degraded for no fault, and in violation of the most solemn vows; do they see this, and by keeping aloof from, not only give her no support or consolation, but tacitly tell the world that there is some just cause for her banishment ! This conduct gave great offence to the English nation, who, with the exception of the aristocracy, did itself everlasting honour by its conduct towards the persecuted lady; showed a love of “fair play,” of that proneness to take part with the weak against the strong, which has ever been amongst its best characteristics. And the royal family have not failed to experience the natural effects of this feeling in the nation, whose regard for that family has never been what it was before the period now under consideration.
65. But, alas ! the sufferings of the unfortunate princess were not to end here; here they but made a mere beginning; her banishment was the smallest part of what she was destined to endure. If, indeed, she had been permitted to enjoy that “tranquil and comfortable society," which the prince, in giving her her discharge, said was "within their power,” she might, though injured and insulted, have led a life free from anxiety, particularly as she might with justice have discarded from her mind all regard for, and
care about, him. But, to suffer her to lead this sort of life appears to have been very far from his thoughts; for, as it was afterwards amply proved, she was no sooner in her state of banishment, than means were set to work to obtain against her such evidence as would, if established, justify the husband in demanding a divorce.
66. No steps were, however, openly taken, until the year 1806; though the pretended grounds of those steps had, some of them, existed five years before. These steps were: 1. A COMMUNICATION to the King, by the Prince of Wales, of certain information that he had received, relative to the conduct of his wife; 2. A WARRANT of the king, authorising and commanding the lord chancellor, the secretary of state for the home department, the first lord of the treasury, and the lord chief justice of the court of King's Bench, to inquire into the truth of the allegations, and to report the result to the king. When we have these documents recorded, we shall have before us the true source of more cabal, intrigue, and mischief, than ought to exist in any nation in ten centuries. The steps were the natural offspring of the cruel and insulting letter from the prince to his wife, on the 30th of April, 1796. As we shall by-and-by see, the plot was hatching during the whole of the ten years; and the reasons why it was attempted to be put in exe