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Kay's Originals Vol. 1


BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES. 285 THE MARQUIS OF GRAHAM was born in 1755, and succeeded his father in 1790. He entered the House of Commons in 1781, as one of the members for Richmond, in Yorkshire, along with the Right Hon. Sir Lawrence Dundas, who was the other. He was subsequently one of the representatives of Bedwin, Wiltshire j and, during the few years he remained in the Commons unconnected with the Government, he proved himself a useful and independent member-sometimes voting with, and sometimes against, the administration. In 1784 the Marquis was appointed one of the Lords of the Treasury, then formed under the leadership of Pitt; and throughout the arduous struggle which ensued he continued a warm supporter of the Crown. In 1789, when the indisposition of George 111. gave rise to the project of a regency, which was urged with so much zeal and impatience by the opposition, Burke was on one occasion so carried away by the violence of his feelings, that, in reference to his Majesty, he declared, " the Almighty had hurled him from his throne !" The Marquis, who was seated beside Pitt on the Treasury bench, shocked with the rudeness of such language, instantly started to his feet, and with great warmth, exclaimed-" No individual within these walls shall dare to assert that the king was hurled from his throne !" A scene of great confusion ensued. On the recovery of his Majesty, the Marquis was the mover of the address to the queen. In " Wraxhall's Mernoila of his own Times"-an amusing, but somewhat prejudiced work-the following lively sketch of his lordship is given :- " Few individuals, however distinguished by birth, talents, parliamentary interest, or public services, have attained to more splendid employments, or have arrived at greater honours, than Lord Graham under the reign of George the Third. Besides enjoying the lucrative sinecure of Justice-General of Scotland for life, we have s e p him occupy a place in the cabinet, while he was joint Postmaster-General, during Pitt's second ill-fated administration. At the hour that I am writing,' the Duke of Montrose, after having been many years decorated with the insignia of the Thistle, is invested with the Order of the Garter, in addition to the high post which he holds of Master of the Horse. " In his person he was elegant and pleasing, as far as those qualities depend on symmetry of external figure ; nor was he,deficient in all the accomplishments befitting his illustrious descent. He possessed a ready elocution, sustained by all the confidence in himself necessary for addressing the House. Nor did he want ideas, while he confined himself to common sense, to argument, and to matters of fact. If, however, he possessed no distinguished talents, he displayed various qualities calculated to compensate for the want of great ability ; particularly the prudence, sagacity, and attention to his inun imteTests, so chamcteristic of the Caledonian people.' He was elected one of the Knights of the Order of the Garter in 1812, under the regency of the a The same qualities were attributed to the late Lord Viscount Melville-although the small Prince of Wales. property he left behind him gave the lie to the insinuation.
Volume 8 Page 400
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