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taining republican principles, as applicable to the British constitution, to have been made against him by Mr. Pitt, * and that part of Burke's speech tending to strengthen that notion, to remove the impression, declared his conviction that the British constitution, though defective in theory, was in practice excellently adapted to this country. He repeated, however, his praises of the French revolution ; he thought it, on the whole, one of the most glorious events in the history of mankind; and proceeded to express his dissent from Burke's opinions on the subject, as inconsistent with just views of the inherent rights of mankind. These, besides, were, he said, inconsistent with Burke's former principles. He contended also that the discussion of the French revolution was irrelative to the Quebec bill,
Burke, in reply, said, • Mr. Fox has treated me with harshness and malignity:
* On this subject, Mr, Pitt, in the course of the discussion, explained his meaning to Mr. Fox's satisfaction,
after having harassed with his light troops in the skirmishes of order, he brought THE HEAVY ARTILLERY of his own great abilities to bear on me.'. He maintained that the French constitution and general systein were replete with anarchy, impiety, vice, and misery; that the discussion of a new polity for a province that had been under the French, and was now under the English government, was a proper opportunity of comparing the French and British constitutions. He denied the charge of inconsistency: his opinions on government, he insisted, had been the same during all his political life. He said, Mr. Fox and he had often differed, and that there had been no loss of friendship between them: but there is something in the cursed French constitution, which envenoms every thing. Fox whispered, there is no loss of friendship between us.'
Burke answered, there is ! I know the price of my conduct'; our friendship is at an end.' He concluded with exhorting the two great men that headed the opposite parties whether they should
move in the political hemisphere, as two;
Mr. Fox was very greatly agitated by this renunciation of friendship, and made many concessions; but in the course of his speech still maintained that Burke had formerly held very different principles, and that he himself-had learned from him those very principles which he now reprobated. He endeavoured to support his allegation by references to measures which Burke had either proposed or promoted; and also cited ludicrous expressions and observations of his to the same purpose. This repetition of the charge of inconsistency prevented the impression which the affectionate and respectful language and behaviour, and the conciliatory apologies of Fox might have probably made on Burke. It would be difficult to determine with certainty, whether constitutional irritability or public principle
was the chief cause of Burke's sacrifice of that friendship which he had so long cherished, and of which the talents and qualities of its object rendered him so worthy. However that may have been, it is certain, that Burke and Fox from this time never were on their former footing. It has been asserted also that Mr. Fox had made critical animadversions in private on the REFLEXions, which reached Burke's ears, mortified him as an author, and displeased him as a friend :--that he had considered it rather as án effusion of poetic genius than a philosophical investigation. As Burke certainly intended to investigate, and knew Fox to be endued with talents fit to examine and appreciate any process of reasoning, (if he allowed his mind the fair and full exertion) it was natural for him either to be mortified, that to a man, whose judgment he so highly prized, he had appeared not able to execute his design; or to be displeased that a partial exertion of his friend's great powers had prevented a fair decision. It is certainly natural for a writer to value what has cost. him much
labour and thought, and to feel mortification on unfavourable criticism, if he highly respects the judgment of the critic, or believes him impartial in that particular case ; and to be displeased, if either desultory examination or partiality produce an erroneous verdict. In allowing that Burke might have had the feelings of an author, we only admit that he was subject to the common infirmities of a man.
Some days after the discussion between Fox and Burke, the following paragraph appeared in a very able diurnal publication, in the interest of Mr. Fox and his party. Morning Chronicle, May 12, 1791.
5. The great and firm body of the Whigs of England, true to their principles, have decided on the dispute between Mr. Fox and Mr. Burke; and the former is declared to have maintained the pure doctrines by which they are bound together, and upon which they have invariably acted.
The consequence is, that Mr. Burke retires from Parliament.”