Political-Candour;-i.e.-Coalition-“Resolutions” of June 14th 1805.
London, H Humphrey, June 21st. 1805
Original hand colouring
355 x 280 mm
Fox makes a speech in the House of Commons; a large section of the crowded Opposition benches is shown (r.). Pitt sits alone on the Treasury Bench, his profile only appearing on the extreme left.; the rest of the Ministerial benches are cut off by the margin, behind him is the Speaker’s Chair, with the tiny head of Abbot surrounded by a vast wig, appearing just over the table. From the table hangs a scroll: ‘Resolutions respecting the Chancellor of the Exchequer – 40000 – Bank of England – Boyd & Benf[ield] – Trotter – Jellicoe – Speculation – Participation’. Fox, corpulent, neat, and composed, stands with his right. hand extended towards Pitt, his left. behind his back and holding a paper: ‘Arraignments [sic] for a new Coalition’. His words ascend and are enclosed in a large label in the upper part of the design: ‘” – Yes Sir, I do assure the Right Honble Gent” \ “though our lives have ever been opposite, though in \ “almost every instance we have disagreed, & though I have \ “constantly blamed the whole of his conduct, yet I should \ “be everlastingly unhappy had it turned out that he had \ “acted wrong or had soiled his hands in the manner we \ “meant to attribute to him; – I do say Sir, that during \ “my whole life, I never did suspect, I never had the least \ “suspicion of any thing dishonorable in the Right Honble Gent” – \ “and from every species of Corruption, I do declare most \ “solemnly, my mind has always most completely \ “acquitted him! – he will be held up to posterity \ “and cited as a bright example of Purity Integrity and Honor!’ On his seat lies his hat; in this is a large bundle of papers: ‘Political Union, to save the Country from Buonaparte and the Doctor’. On the ground beside it lies a large overturned tankard of ‘Whitbread’s Entire’, whose contents froth over the floor.
Long narrow labels ascend from other M.P.s. Pitt says “Here! – Here! – Here!!!”, touching with his finger the vacant place beside him, inviting Fox to take it. Next Fox’s hat and on the extreme right. sits Grey clutching his cocked hat with papers: ‘State of . . . Na[tion]’; ‘Enquiries into the Public Offices’. He says: “Yes I find they’ll be all prov’d Honest, so I’ll destroy my Papers too!” Next, partly concealed by Fox, slouches Sheridan; he is silent (opposed to any praise of Pitt, especially from Fox). Next sits Tierney, hands on knees, saying sanctimoniously, “O how I shall enjoy to sit down with him, upon the Bench of Honesty”. Next sits Lord Henry Petty, hands folded, feet together, saying priggishly, “an Immaculate Statesman! – just like my own Papa” [Lansdowne, or ‘Malagrida’]. On the second bench Windham sits behind Fox’s empty seat, biting a pen; he holds ‘Notes and Speeches for the Political Register’, and says: “Why, he deserves a Statue of Gold more than Porcupine himself!” Next, little Wilberforce claps tiny hands, saying, “O he’s an Angel of Light! – a Cherubim of Glory!” Beside him is Erskine, saying, “he scorns a dirty Cause, I vow to G-d”. The other members are freely drawn and scarcely characterized, though Walpole (behind Windham) is identified by his small size, sharp nose, cocked hat, and regimentals; next him is a stout man in spectacles resembling Lord Temple. Heads look down from the gallery in the upper right. corner of the design.