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not of a nature that proved any attachment to had been prosecuted before your Majesty's him, it was only a flirting conduct.” Unjust Privy Council, the more solemn and usual course therefore, as I think it, that any such question of proceeding there would, as I am informed, should have been put to Mrs. Lisle, or that her have furnished, or enabled me to furnish, your judgment should have been taken at all; yet Majesty with the questions as well as the answers, what I fear from it, as pressing with peculiar Mrs. Lisle, it should also be observed, was at hardship upon me, is, that though it is Mrs. the time of her examination, under the severe opLisle's final and ultimate judgment upon the pression of having, but a few days before, heard whole of my conduct, yet, wlien delivered to of the death of her daughter;--a daughter, who the Commissioners and your Majesty, it be had been happily married, and who had lived comes evidence, which, connected with all the happily with her husband, in mutual attachment facts on which Mrs. Lisle had formed it, may tili her death. The very circumstance of her lead to still further and more unfavourable con- then situation would naturally give a graver and clusions, in the minds of those who are after severer cast to her opinions. When the queswards to judge upou it;—that her judgment will tion was proposed to her, as a general question, be the foundation of other judgments against (and I presume it must have been so put to her) me, much severer than her own; and that whether my conduct was such as would become a though she evidently limits her opinion, and by married woman, possibly her own daughter's consayiog ONLY flirting” impliedly negatives it as duct andwhat shewould have expectedof her,might' atfording any indication of any thing more im- present itself to her mind. And I confidently prop r, while she proceeds expressly to negative submit to your Majesty's betterjudgment, that such it as affording any proof of attachment; yet it a general question ought not, in a fair and candid may be thought by others, to justify their con- consideration of my case, to have been put to sidering it as a species of conduct, which shewed Mrs. Lisle, or any other woman. For, as to my an attachment to the man to whom it was ad- conduct being, or not being, becoming a mar. dressed; which in a married woman was crimi- ried woman; the same conduct, or any thing bal and wrong. What Mrs. Lisle exactly like it, which may occur in my case, could not nşeans by only flirting conduct--what degree of occur in the case of a married woman, who was impropriety of conduct she would describe by not living in my unfortunate situation ; or, if it. it, it is extremely difficult, with any precision, didi occur, it must occur under circumstances to ascertain, How many women are there, most which must give it, and most deservedly, virtuous, most truly modest, incapable of any a very different character, A married woman, thing inspure, vicious, or immoral, in deed or living well and happily with her husband could not thought, who, from greater vivacity of spirits, be frequently having one gentleman at her table, from less natural reserve, from that want of with no other company bat ladies of her family ; caution, which the very consciousness of iono-she could not be spending her evenings frecence betrays them into, conduct themselves in quently in the same society, and separately cona manner, which a womau of a graver character, versing with that gentleman, unless either with of more reserved disposition, but not with one the privity and consent of her husband'; or by particle of superior virtue, thinks too incautious, taking advantage, with some nianagement of his too unreserved, too familiar; and which, it ignorance and his absence ;-if it was with bis forced upon her oath to give her opinion upon privity and consent, that very cireamstance it, she might feel herself, as an honest woman, alone would unquestionably alter the character bound to say in that opinion, was flirting ?- of such conduct-il with management she avoidBut whatever sense Mrs. Lisle annexes to the ed his knowledge, that very management would word “ flirting" it is evident, as I said before, betray a bad motive. The cases therefore are that she cannot mean any thing criminal, vicious, not parallel; the illustration is not just; and the or indecent, or any thing with the least shade of question, which called for such an answer from deeper in propriety than what is necessarily ex- Mrs. Lisle, ought not, in čandour and fairness, pressed in the word “ flirting." She never would to have been put. I entreat your Majesty, have added, as she does in both instances, that however, not to misunderstand me; I should be it was ONLY flirting; if she bad thought it of ashamed indeed to be suspected of pleading any a quality to be recorded in a formal Report, peculiar or unfortunate circumstance in my situamongst circumstances which must occasion the ation, as an excuse for any crimidator indecent most unfavourable iuterpretations, and which act. With respect to such acts, most unquesa : deserved the most serious consideration of your tionably sach circumstances can make no differMajesty. To use it so, I am sure your Majesty ence; and afford no excuse. They must bear must see is to press it far beyond the meaning their own character of disgrace aud iufamy, un. which she would assign to it herself ---And as der all circunstances. But there are acts, which I have admitted that there may be much inde- are unbecoming a married woman, which ought scribable in the manner of doing any thing, so to be avoidedbyher,from an apprehension lest they it must be admitted to me that there is much should reader her husband uneasy, not because indescribable, and most material also in the they might give him any reason to distrust her inanner of saying any thing, and in the accent chastity, ber virtne or her morals, but because with which it is said. The whole context serves they might wound his feelings, by indicating a much to explain it; and if it is in answer to a preference to the society of another man, over question, the words of that question, the man. bis, in a case, wliere she had the option of both. per and the accent in which it is asked, are also But surely, as to such acts, they inust necesmost material to understand the precise mean. sarily bear a very different character, and receive ing, which the expressions are intended to a very different construction,' in a case, where, convey; and I must lament therefore extremely, unhappily, there can be no such apprehension, if my character is to be affected by the opinion and where there is no such option, I must there of any witness, that the question by which that fore be excused for dwelling so much upon this opinion was drawn from her, were not given part of the case; and I am sure your Majesty too, as well as ber answers, and if this inquiry will feel me warranted in saying, what I say witla
a confidence, exactly proportioned to the respec-ren, or to his wife, or to any other relative? tability of Mrs. Lisle's cliaracter, that, whatever How would it be endured, in general, and I she meant, by any of these expressions, she trust, that my case ought uot, in this respect, to could yot, by possibility, have meant to describe form an exception, that one woman should in a conduct, which to her mind afforded evidence of similar manner be placed in judgment, upou the crime, vice, or indecency. It she had, her re- conduct of another? And that judgment be regard to her own character, her own delicacy, ported, where her character was of inost importher own honourable and virtuvus feelings, would ance to ber, as amongst things which must be in less than the two years, which bave since credited till decidedly contradicted? Let every elapsed, have found some excuse for separating one put these questions home to their own herself from that intimate connexion, which, by breasts, and before they impate blame to me, her situation in my household, subsists between for protesting against the fairness and justice of us. She would not have renained exposed to this procedure, ask how they would feel upon it, the repetition of so gross an offence, and insult, if it were their own case? -But perhaps they to a modest, virtuous, and delicate woman, as cannot bring their imaginations to conceive that that of being made, night by night, witness to it could ever become their own case. A few scenes, openly acted in her presence, offensive months ago I could not have believed that it to virtue and decoruin. If your Majesty thinks would have been mine. But the just ground I have dwelt too long aud tediously on this part of my complaint may perhaps be more easily of the case, I entreat your Majesty to think what appreciated and felt, by supposing a more famiI must feel upon it. I feel it a great hardship, liar, but an analogous case. The High Treason, as I have frequently stated, that under the cover with which I was charged, was supposed to be of a grave charge of High s reason, the proprie committed in the foul crime of adultery. What ties, and decencies, of my private conduct and would be the impression of your Majesty, what behaviour, have been made the subject, as I be- would be the impression upon the mind of any lieve so unprecedently, of a formal investigation one, acquainted with the excellent laws of your upon oath. And that, in consequence of it, I Majesty's kingdom, and the admirable adninismay, at this momeut, be exposed to the danger tration of them, it upon a Commission of this of forfeiting your Majesty's good opinion, and kind, secretly to inquire into the conduct of any being degraded and disgraced in reputation man, upon a charge of High Treason, against through the country, because what Mrs. the state, the Commissioners should not only Lisle has said of my conduct,--that it was proceed to inquire, whether in the judgnient of
only that of a woman who liked firting," has the witness, the conduct of the accused was such become recorded in the Report on this formal as becanje a loyal subject; but, when the result inquiry, made into matters of grave crimes, and of their Inquiry obliged them to report directly of essential importance to the state.---Let against the charge of Treason, they, nevertheme conjure your Majesty, over and over again, less, should record an imputation, or libel, againstbefore you suffer this circanıstance to prejudice his character for loyalty, and reporting, as a part me in your opiniou, not only to weigh all the of the evidence, the opinion of the witness, that circumstances I have stated, but to look round the conduct of the accused was such as did not bethe first ranks of female virtue in this country, come a loyal subject, should further report, that and see how many women there are of most un- the evidence of that witness, without specifying impeached reputation, of most unsullied and un. any part of it, must be credited till decidedly suspected houour, character and virtue, whose contradicted, and deserved the most serious conconduct, though living happily with their hus-sideration? How could be appeal from that bands, if submitted to the judgment of persons of report? How could he decidedly contradict a severer cast of mind, especially if saddened, at the opinion of the witness! Sire, there is no the moment, by calainity, migut be styled to differeuce between this supposed case aud mine, be * Airting." I would not, however, be un- but this. That in the case of the man, a characderstood as intending to represent Mrs. Lisle's ter for loyalty, however injured, could not be judgment, as being likely to be marked with any destroyed by such an insinuation. His future improper austerity, and therefore I am certain life nuight give him abundant opportunities of falshe must either have had no idea that the expressifying the justice of it. But a female character, sions she has used, in the manner which she once so blasted, what hupe or chance has it of used them, were capable of being understood, in recovery-Your Majesty will not fail to perso serious a light as to be referred to, amongst ceive, that I have pressed this part of the case, circumstances deserving the most serious consi- with an earnestness which shews that I have felt deration, and which must occasion most unfa- it. I have no wish to disguise from your Majes. vourable interpretations ; or she must by the im- ty, that I have felt it, and felt it strongly. It posing novelty of her situation, in private exami- is the only part of the case, which I conceive to nation before four such grave characters, have be in the least degree against me, that rests upon been surprised into the use of expressions, which, a witness who is at all worthy of your Majesty's with a better opportunity of weighing them, shé credit. How unfair it is, that any thing she bas would either not have used at all, or have ac- said should be pressed against me, I trust I have companied with still more of qualification than sufficiently shewn. In canvassing, however, that, which she has, however, in some degree, Mrs. Lisle's evidence, I hope I have never forgot as it is, annexed to them.
what was due to Mrs. Lisle. I have been as But my great complaint is the having, not, anxious not to do her injustice, as to do justice particularly, Mrs. Lisle's opinion, but any per- to myself, . I retain the same respect and regard son's opinion, set up, as it were, in judgment for Mrs. Lisle now, as I ever had. If the uufaagainst the propriety of my private conduct. vourable impressions, which the Commissioners How would it be endured, that the judgment of seem to suppose, fairly arise out of the expresone man should be asked, and recorded in a sious she has used, I am confident they will be solenin Report, against the conduct of another, understood, in a sense, which was never intended wither with respeci to bis behaviour to his child by her. And I should scorn to purchase any
advantage to myself, at the expense of the | but as a party acctised, had not a right to be slightest imputation, unjustly cast upon Mrs. thought, and to be presumed innocent, till I Lisle, or any one else. Leaving therefore, was proved to be guilty? Let me ask, if there with these observations, Mrs. Lisle's evidence, ever could exist a case, in which the credit of I niust proceed to the evidence of Mr. Bidgood. the witness ought to have been more severely The parts of it which apply to this part of the sifted and tried? The fact rested solely upon case, I mean my conduct to Captain Manby at his single assertion. However false, it could not Montagne House, I shall detail. They are as possibly receive contradiction, but from the parfollows. “I first observed Captain Manby came ties. The story itself surely is not very probable. to Montague House either the end of 1803, or My character camot be considered as under inthe beginning of 1804. I was waiting one day quiry; it is already gone, and decided upon, by in the anti-room; Captain Manby had his hat in those, if there are any such, who think such a his band, and appeared to be going away: he story probable.-- That in a room, with the door was a long time with the Princess, and, as I open, and a servant known to be waiting just stood on the steps waiting, I looked into the by, we should have acted such a scene of gross room in which they were, and in the reflection indecency. The indiscretion at least might on the looking-glass I saw them salute each other. have rendered it improbable, even to those, I mean that they kissed each other's lips. Cap-whose prejndices against me, might be prepared tain Manby then went away. I then observed to conceive nothing improbable in the indecency the Princess have her handkerchief in her hands, of it. Yet this seeins to have been received as and wipe her eyes, as if she was crying, and a fact that there was no reason to questior. went into the drawing room.” In his second The witness is assuined, withont hesitation, to deposition, on the 30 July, talking of his suspi- be the witness of trnth, of unquestionable veracions of what passed at Southend, he says, “ they city. Not the faintest trace is there to be found arose from seeing them kiss each other, as I of a single qnestion pnt to him, to try and sift meotioned before, like people fond of each the credit which was due to him, or to his story. other;-a very close kiss.". In these extracts Is he asked, as I suggested before shonld have from his depositions, there can undoubtedly be been done with regard to Mr. Cole-To whom no complaint of any thing being left to inference, he told this fact before? When he told it? Here is a fact, which must unquestionably oc- What was ever done in consequence of this incasion almost as unfavourable interpretations, as formation? If he never told it, till for the pur. any fact of the greatest impropriety and indeco- pose of supporting Lady Donglas's statement, rum, short of the proof of actual crime. And how could he in his situation as an old servant of this fact is positively and affirmatively sworn to. the Prince, with whom, as he swears, he had And if this witness is truly represented, as one lived twenty-three years, creditably to himself, who must be credited till he is decidedly contra- account for having concealed it so long? And dicted; and the decided contradiction of the par- how came Lady Douglas and Sir Jobn to fiud out ties accused, should be considered us unavailing, that he knew it, if he never had communicated it constitutes a charge which cannot possibly be it before? If he had communicated it, it would answered. For the scene is so laid, that there is then have been useful to have heard how far his no eye to witness it, but his owo: and therefore present story was consistent with his former; and there can be no one who can possibly contradict if it should have happened that this and other birn, however false his story may be, but the per- matters, which he taay have stated, were, at sons whom he accused. As for me, Sire, there is that time, made the subject of any inquiry ; no mode, the most solemn that can be devised, in then how far that inquiry had tended to contirm which I shall not be anxious and happy to con. or shake his credit. His first examination was, tradict it. And I do here most solemnly, in the it is true, taken by Lord Grenville, and Lord face of Heaven, most directly and positively Spencer alone, without the aid of the experience affirme, that it is as foul, malicious, and wicked of the Lord Chancellot and Lord Chief Justice; a falsehood, as ever was invented by the malice this undoubtedly may account for the omission: of man. Captain Manby, to whom I have been but the noble Lords will forgive me if I say it under the necessity of applying, for that purpose, does not excuse it, especially as Mr. Bidgood in the deposition which I annex, most expressly was examined again on the 3d of July, by all the and positively denies it also. Beyond these our Commissioners, and this fact is again referred to two denials, There is nothing which can by pos. then as the foundation of the suspicion which he sibility be directly opposed 10 Mr. Bidgood's afterwards entertained of Captain Manby at evidence,-All that remains to be done is to ex- Southend. Nay, that last deposition affords on amine Mr. Bidgood's credit, anıl to see how far my part, another ground of similar complaint of he deserves the character which the Commis- the strongest kind. It opens thus : “ The Prinsioners give to him.-How unfoundedly they "cess nsed to go out in her phaeton with coachgave such a character to Mr. Cole, your Majes." man and heiper towards Long Reach, eight or ty, I am satisfied, must be fully convinced. “ ten times, carrying luncheon and wine with I suppose there must be some mistake, I will “her, when Captain Manby's ship was at Long not call it by any harsher name, for I think it “ Reach, always Mrs. Fitzgerald with her. She can be no more than a mistake, in Mr. Bidgood's “ would go out at one, and return abont five or saying, that the first time he kvew Captain Man- " six ; sometimes sooner or later."---The date by come to Montague House, was at the end of when Captain Manby's ship was lying at Long 1803, or beginning of 1804; for he first came at Reach, is not given; and theretore wbether this the end of the former year; and the fact is, that was before, or after, the scene of the supposed Mr. Bidgood must have seen him then.-But, salute, does not appear. But for what was this however, the date is comparatively immaterial, statement of Mr. Bidgood's nade? Why was it the fact it is, that is important. And here, introduced? Why were these drives towards Sire, surely I have the same complaint which Long Reach with luncheon, connected with I have so often urged. I would ask your Captain Manby's ship lying there at the time, Majesty, whether I, not as a Princess of Wales, examined to by the Cowmissioners: The first
point, the matter foremost in their minds, when | spondence to be kept up with my charity boys,
the same fact, after saying that we went away were exposed to sight, as if to declare that he the day after the Africaine sailed from Southend, was there. It is tedious and disgusting, Sire, I he says, “ Captain Manby was there three times am well aware, to trouble your Majesty with
a week at the least, while lis ship lay for six such particulars ; but it doubtless is true, that I “ weeks off Southend at the Nore;-he came as bid him not to take the candles away from No. 9. "tide served in a morning, and to dipe, and The candles which are used in my drawing-room, " drink tea. I have seen him next morning by are considered as his perquisites. Those on the “ ten o'clock. I suspected he slept at No. 9, the contrary which are used in my private apartment “ Princess's. She always put out the candles are the perquisites of my maid. I thought that “ herself in the drawing-room at No. 9, and bid upon the whole it was a fairer arrangement, when
me not wait to put them up. She gave me the I was at Southend, to give my maid the perqui" orders as soon as she went to Southend. I used sites of the candles used at No. 9; and I made " to see water jugs, basons, and towels, set ont the arrangement accordingly, and ordered Mr.
opposite the Princess's door in the passage. Bidgood to leave them. This, Sire, is the true “Never saw them so left in the passage at any account of the fact respecting the candles; an “other time, and I suspected he was there at that arrangement which very possibly Mr. Bidgood
time; there was a general suspicion through did not like. But the putting out the candles 4 the house.
Mrs. and Miss Fitzgerald there, myself, was not the only thing, from which the " and Miss Hammond (now Mrs. Hood) there. interence is drawn, that Captain Manby slept at My suspicion arose from seeing them in the my house, at No. 9, and as is evidently insinuat
glass," &c. as mentioned before. -"Her beha. ed, if not stated, in my bed-room. There were "viour like that of a woman attached to a man ; water jugs, and basons, and towels left in the
used to be by themselves at luncheon, at South- passage, which Mr. Bidgood never saw at other
end, when the ladies were not sent for; a num- times. At what other times does he mean? At “ber of times. There was a poney which Cap- other times than those at which he suspected, " tain Maoby used to ride ; it stood in the stable from seeing them there, that Captain Manby “ ready for bim, and which Sicard used to ride.” slept in my house? If every time he saw the ba. Then he says, the servants used to talk and sons and towels, &c. in the passage, he suspectlaugh about Captain Manby, and that it was ed Captain Manby slept there, it certainly would matter of discourse amongst them; and this, follow that he never saw them at times when he with what has been alluded to before, respect did not suspect that fact. But Sire, upon this. ing Sicard's putting letters for bim into the post, important fact, important to the extent of con, which he had received from me, contains the victing me, if it were true, of High Treason, if whole of his deposition as far as respects Captain it were not for the indignation which such scanManby. And, Sire, as to the fact of retiring dalous licentious wickedness and malice excite, through No. 3, from No. 7, to No. 9, alone with it would hardly be possible to treat it with any Captain Manby, I have no recollection of ever gravity. Whether there were or were not basons having gone with Captain Mauby, though but and towels sometimes left in a passage at Southfor a moment, from the one room in which the end, which were not there generally, and ought company was sitting, through the dining room to to bave been never there, I really cannot inform the other drawing-room. It is, however, now your Majesty. It certainly is possible, but the above two years ago, and to be confident that utmost it can prove, I should trust, might be such a circumstance might not have happened, is some slovenliness in my servant, who did not put more than I will undertake to be. But in the on- them in their proper places; but surely it must ly sense in which he uses the expression, as re- be left to Mr. Bidgood alone to trace any evi, tiring alone, coupled with the immediate context dence, from such a circumstance, of the crime that follows, it is most false and scandalous. I of adultery in me. But I cannot thus leave this know no means of absolutely proving a negative. fact, for I trust I shall here again have the same It the fact was true, there must have been other advantage from the excess and extravagance of witnesses who could have proved it as well as this man's malice, as I have already had on the Mr. Bidgood. Mrs. Fitzgerald is the only per other part of the charge, from the excess and exson of the party, who was examined, and her travagance of his confederate Lady Douglas. evidence proves the negative so far as the nega- What is the charge that he would insinuate? That tive can be proved; for she says, “ he dined I meditated and effected a stolen, secret, clan" there, but never staid late. She was at South-destine intercourse with an adulterer? No. " end all the time I was there, and cannot recol. Captain Manby, it seems according to his insinua “ lect to have seen Captain Manby there, or ation, slept with me in my own house, under * known him to be there, later than nine, or half circumstances, of such notoriety that it was im“ past nine.” Miss Fitzgerald and Miss Ham- possible that any of my female attendants at mond, (now Mrs. Hood) are not called to this least should not have known it. Their duties fact; although a fact so extremely important, as were varied on the occasion; they had to supply it must appear to your Majesty ; nor indeed are basons and towels in places where they never they examined at all. As to the putting out of the were supplied, except when prepared for him ; candles, it seems he says, I have the orders as and they were not only purposely so prepared, but soon as I went to Southend, which was six weeks prepared in an open passage, exposed to view, in before the Africaine arrived; so this plan of ex- a manner to excite ihe suspicion of those who clading him from the opportunity of knowing were not admitted into the secret. And what what was going on at No. 9, was part of a long-a secret was it, that was thus to be hazarded! meditated scheme, as he would represent it, No less than what, if discovered, would fix planned and thought of six weeks before it could Captain Manby and myself with High Treason! be executed; and which when it was executed, Not only therefore must I have been thus careyour Majesty will recollect, according to Mr. less of reputation, and eager for infamy; but I Bidgood's evidence, there was so little contri- must have been careless of my life, as of my hovance to conceal, that the basons and towels, nour.-Lost to all sense of shame, surely I which the Captain is insinuated to have nsed, must have still retained some regard for life.