The History and Proceedings of the House of Commons: Volume 7, 1727-1733. Originally published by Chandler, London, 1742.
This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.
SPEECHES AND DEBATES IN THE House of Commons, DURING The Sixth and Last Session of the Sixth Parliament of Great-Britain.
The Parliament meet June 27, 1727, on Occasion of the Death of King George I. and the Accession of King George II.
UPON the Death of his Majesty King GEORGE I, the Parliament, though prorogued to the 27th of June, met on the 15th, being the very next Day after the Arrival of the Express with the News; in pursuance of the Act of the 4th and 5th of Queen Anne, Chap. 8, by which it is enacted as follows, viz. 'That this present Parliament, or any other Parliament hereafter summoned by her Majesty, her Heirs and Successors, shall not be determined or dissolved by the Death or Demise of her said Majesty, or of her Heirs and Successors; but such Parliament shall continue, and immediately meet, sit, and act, notwithstanding such Death or Demise, during the Time of six Months, unless the same shall be sooner prorogued, or dissolved, by such Person who shall be next Heir to the Crown of this Realm in Succession.' The Parliament being met accordingly was prorogued by Commission from his Majesty King George the Second, till the 27th of June, on which Day his Majesty came to the House of Peers, and being seated on the Throne with the usual Solemnity, and the Commons being sent for and attending, his Majesty made the following Speech to both Houses.
The Speech of King George II. to the Parliament, at his Accession to the Crown.
My Lords and Gentlemen,
"I Am persuaded that you all share with me in my Grief and Affliction for the Death of my late Royal Father, which, as it brings upon me the immediate Care and Weight of the Government, adds very much to my Concern, lest I should not be as successful in my Endeavours, as I am, above all Things, desirous to make you a great and happy People.
"I heartily wish, that this first solemn Declaration of my Mind in Parliament, could sufficiently express the Sentiments of my Heart, and give you a perfect and just Sense of my fixed Resolution, by all possible Means, to merit the Love and Affection of my People, which I shall always look upon as the best Support and Security of my Crown.
"And as the Religion, Liberty, Property, and a due Execution of the Laws, are the most valuable Blessings of a free People, and the peculiar Privileges of this Nation, it shall be my constant Care to preserve the Constitution of this Kingdom, as it is now happily established in Church and State, inviolable in all its Parts; and to secure to all my Subjects the full Enjoyment of their Religious and Civil Rights.
"I see with great Pleasure the happy Effects of that Vigour and Resolution, which was exerted in the last Session of Parliament, for the Defence of the Rights and Possessions of this Nation, and for maintaining the Tranquility and Balance of Power in Europe. The strict Union and Harmony, which has hitherto subsisted among the Allies of the Treaty of Hanover, has chiefly contributed to the near Prospect of a General Peace; I have therefore given all my Allies the strongest Assurances of pursuing the same Measures, and of making good the Engagements entered into by the Crown of Great Britain.
"The Chearsulness with which the Supplies necessary for carrying on this great Work were raised, making it but just that the publick Expence should be lessened, as soon as the Circumstances of Affairs will permit; I have already given Orders for sending back some of the Regiments brought from Ireland, and will proceed to reduce my Forces, both by Sea and Land, as soon as it can be done without Prejudice to the common Cause, and consistent with the Interest of my Kingdom.
Gentlemen of the House of Commons,
"You know very well, that the Grant of the greatest Part of the Civil List Revenues is now determined, and that it is necessary for you to make a new Provision for the Support of me and my Family. I am confident it is needless for me, in any particular Manner, to recommend to your Care the Consideration of what so nearly and personally concerns me; and I am persuaded, that the Experience of past Times, and a due Regard to the Honour and Dignity of the Crown, will prevail upon you to give me this first Proof of your Zeal and Affection, in a Manner answerable to the Necessities of my Government.
My Lords and Gentlemen,
"I recommend it to you to give all possible Dispatch to such Business as shall necessarily be brought before you; the Season of the Year, and the Circumstances of Time requiring your Presence in the Country, and making it improper to carry this Session into any great Length."
Sir P. Mathuen moves for an Address of Condolence, Congratulation, and Thanks.
The Commons being return'd to their House, Mr Speaker reported his Majesty's Speech to both Houses. Hereupon Sir Paul Methuen mov'd, 'That an humble Address be presented to his Majesty, to condole upon the Death of his late Royal Father; to congratulate his Majesty on his happy Accession to the Throne; and to return his Majesty the Thanks of this House for his most gracious Speech:' This Motion being seconded by Sir Robert Walpole, and voted Nem. Con. a Committee was appointed to draw up an Address upon the said Resolution. Sir Robert Walpole, being one of the said Committee, immediately drew up an Address; which, on the 29th, was reported, and unanimously agreed to.
The Commons resolve to grant a Supply, for the Support of the King's Houshold.
June 29. A Motion being made, that a Supply be granted to his Majesty, for the better Support of his Majesty's Houshold, and of the Honour and Dignity of the Crown; it was unanimously resolved to consider of that Motion the next Day in a Grand Committee; which was done accordingly; and therein it was resolv'd, Nem. Con. to grant such a Supply to his Majesty.
June 30. The Commons presented their Address to his Majesty as follows.
Most Gracious Sovereign,
'We your Majesty's most dutiful and loyal Subjects, the Commons of Great Britain in Parliament assembled, from a grateful Sense and Remembrance of the many Blessings we enjoyed under the Government of our late most Gracious Sovereign, beg Leave, in the most dutiful Manner, to condole with your Majesty upon the Death of your late Royal Father; a Loss to this Nation which your Majesty alone could possibly repair.
'Your immediate Succession banished all our Grief; and the uninterrupted Continuance of the Blessings we had long enjoyed obliges us, with Duty and Gratitude, to acknowledge the just Sense we have of our present and future Happiness; and to beseech your Majesty to accept the sincere Congratulations of your faithful Commons, upon your Majesty's happy Accession to the Throne of your Royal Ancestors.
'Your Majesty's most Gracious Speech from the Throne requires a more than ordinary Return of Duty and Thankfulness, for that tender and paternal Care, which you have been pleased to express for our Religion, Laws, and Liberties, and for those ample Assurances your Majesty has given us, inviolably to preserve the Constitution of these Kingdoms, as it is now happily established in Church and State; and to secure to all your Subjects the full Enjoyment of their Religious and Civil Rights: And as these Blessings are the most valuable and dear to a free People, and the peculiar Privileges of this Nation; we cannot enough admire your Majesty's Goodness, and express our Satisfaction, in this solemn Declaration of your Majesty's Resolution, to make the Good of your People your chief and constant Care.
'We congratulate your Majesty upon the Preliminary Articles being signed; and we see, with great Pleasure, the Beginning of your Majesty's Reign attended with the happy Presages of a General Peace. The early Assurances given by your Majesty to your Allies, of pursuing the same Measures as your late Royal Father had taken, and of making good the several Engagements entered into by the Crown of Great Britain; as they strengthen and cement that strict Union and Harmony which has hitherto subsisted among the Allies of the Treaty of Hanover, so they confirm to us the Hopes and near Prospect of a general Tranquility, upon Terms honourable, safe, and advantageous to your Majesty, and all your Allies.
'The Regard and Concern which we had, and always shall have, for the Defence of the Rights and Possessions of this Nation, for vindicating the Honour of our Sovereign, and for maintaining the due Balance of Power in Europe, engaged us with Chearfulness, during the last Session of Parliament, to grant the Supplies necessary for the carrying on this great Work. And no greater Encouragement can possibly be given to us, than to see your Majesty so early beginning to lessen the publick Expences, and resolving to reduce your Forces both by Sea and Land, as soon as it can be done without Prejudice to the Common Cause, and consistent with the Interest and Safety of this Nation.
'These many and great Instances of your Majesty's Goodness and Concern for the Happiness and Welfare of your People call upon us for the highest Returns of Duty, Zeal, and Affection to your Majesty's Person and Government: And as we are fully convinced that our own Interest and Preservation are inseparable from your Majesty's, we beg Leave to assure your Majesty, that we will, with our Lives and Fortunes, maintain and support your Majesty's undoubted Right and Title to the Imperial Crown of this Realm, and all other your Majesty's Dominions, against all Attempts whatsoever.
'And when we reflect on your Majesty's Royal Virtues, which promise us all the Blessings that can flow from a Mind truly Great; when we consider the distinguished Character of the Queen, your Royal Consort, and the additional Happiness that descends to your People from her many Princely Qualities, and remember your numerous and hopeful Issue, the lasting Pledge and Security of our happy Establishment; that your Majesty's Crown may sit with Ease and Glory on your Head, we think ourselves indispensibly obliged to assure your Majesty, that we will provide such a Revenue for the Occasions of your Majesty's Civil Government, as may be sufficient to support the Honour and Dignity of the Crown in its proper and full Lustre.
To this Address the King return'd the following Answer.
The King's Answer thereto.
I Return you my Thanks for your dutiful and loyal Address. The Resolutions of the Commons of Great Britain are, every where, so highly regarded, that I cannot but receive, with the greatest Satisfaction, this unanimous Declaration of your Fidelity, Zeal, and Affection; and I will endeavour, by a steady Care and Concern for the Interest and Welfare of my People, to answer the Expectation you have conceived of my Government.
July 1. Mr Farrer reported the Resolution of the Grand Committee, for granting a Supply to his Majesty, for the better Support of his Majesty's Houshold, and of the Honour and Dignity of the Crown, which was agreed to, Nem. Con.
Sir R. Walpole's Motion for settling on the King the entire Revenues of the Civil List.
July 3. The Commons, in a Committee of the whole House, consider'd of the Supply granted to his Majesty, and Sir Robert Walpole represented, 'That the annual Sum of 700,000 l. granted to and settled on the late King, for the Support of his Houshold and of the Honour and Dignity of the Crown, falling short every Year, they had been obliged to make it up another Way; and that his present Majesty's necessary Expences being like to increase, by reason of the Largeness of his Family, and of settling a Houshold for his Royal Consort, he therefore moved, That the entire Revenues of the Civil List, which produced about 100,000 l. per Annum, above the said yearly Sum of 700,000 l. might be settled on his Majesty during his Life.' This Motion being seconded, Mr Shippen stood up and spoke as follows.
Mr Shippen's Speech on that Occasion.
'I agree with the honourable Member who spoke first, [Sir Robert Walpole] That on his Majesty's happy Accession to the Throne, there ought to be no other Contention amongst us, than who should most contribute to his Service, than who should express their Duty and Loyalty in the most respectful and the most extensive Manner. But then I hope he will agree with me, that this is to be done with some Regard to those we represent: That this is to be done, consistent with the Trust reposed in us; consistent with that Frugality which this House is bound to use, whenever the Crown is pleased to call upon it, to exercise its great Power of giving Money.
'Now, notwithstanding what has been urged, I think, we shall so far depart from this Rule of Frugality, as we exceed the Revenue granted to his late Majesty, whether that Exceeding shall amount yearly to 93,000 l. as computed at the highest by that honourable Member, or to above 130,000 l. as I have seen it more truly computed by another. For I remember very well, that the yearly Sum of 700,000 l. tho' now thought too little, was not obtain'd for his late Majesty, without a long and solemn Debate; [See Vol. I. p. 21.] and it was allow'd by every one that contended for it, to be an ample Royal Revenue. Nor was it ask'd inconsiderately, and on a sudden; it was ask'd on mature Deliberation, after the Queen's Civil List Branches were found deficient; it was ask'd after many Computations had been made of every Charge requisite to support the Honour and Dignity of the Crown, and to maintain the present Royal Family; It was ask'd, after duly weighing what Provision would be sufficient to answer all the ordinary and extraordinary Occasions of the Civil Government; what would be sufficient to answer all proper Augmentations of Salaries, all reasonable and charitable Pensions, all secret Services at Home and Abroad, necessary to carry on a just and wise Administration: It was ask'd by that honourable Member himself and others, who were entring into great Employments, who were going to taste of the Royal Bounty, and who therefore could not possibly be suspected to have any Design of cramping his Majesty, by a too contracted and narrow Revenue.
'Nor does the late Alteration in the Royal Family call for any Increase of Expence. For if the Establishment for the Queen should be enlarged, whose distinguished Character and many Princely Virtues, taken Notice of in your Address, intitle her to all Degrees of Grandeur, which any former Queen Consort ever enjoy'd; I say, if her Majesty's Establishment should be enlarg'd, I presume the Establishment for Prince Frederick will be much inferior to that settled on his present Majesty when Prince of Wales. Besides, our ardent Wishes for his Majesty's constant Residence in these Kingdoms, and his Royal Intentions of making us a great and happy People, give us Hopes, that many personal, many particular Expences in the late Reign, especially those for frequent Journies to Hanover, will be discontinu'd, and entirely cease.
'Nor is it any Objection to the Reasoning of that Time, when the 700,000 l. was granted to the late King, or to the Computations then made, that this Sum is said to have been found by the Experience of past Times, to be not answerable to the Necessities of the Civil Government.
'For this Experience could not be found in the Queen's Reign, because her Civil List Branches seldom amounted to 600,000 l. commonly to about 550,000 l. and sometimes to very little above 500,000 l. as appears by Accounts formerly laid before this House; and I will not suppose those Accounts which were brought from the Treasury to be otherwise than true, in regard to my honourable Friend—I ask Pardon, I should have said, the honourable Member, for there is no Friendship betwixt us. But he must give me Leave to observe, That when he asserts her Civil List Branches amounted to above 700,000 l. yearly, he can only mean the gross, and not the neat Produce, which is a very uncandid and fallacious Way of Arguing.
'Tho' her Revenues were so low, yet she called upon her Parliament but once in a Reign of above thirteen Years, to pay the Debts contracted in her Civil Government; and it is a Justice due to the Memory of that excellent Princess, to remind Gentlemen of the unparalell'd Instances of her Piety and Generosity, which occasion'd those Debts. She gave the First Fruits and Tenths, arising now, as the honourable Member, who made this Motion, says, to 19,000 l. a Year, for the Augmentation of the Maintenance of the Poor Clergy: She gave 5000 l. a Year out of the Post-Office to the Duke of Marlborough: She suffer'd 700 l. a Week to be likewise charged on the Post-Office for the publick Service, and by that Concession lost a vast Sum, the additional Duty then producing only 8000 l. a Year: She gave several hundred thousand Pounds for building the Castle of Blenheim: She allow'd Prince Charles of Denmark 4000 l. a Year: She sustained great Losses by the Tin Contract: She supported the poor Palatines: She gave 100,000 l. to the Uses of the War. These, with many other Royal Bounties which escape my present Remembrance, were the Reasons that brought her under a Necessity of asking for 500,000 l. But she was so sensible of the Inconvenience, and so determin'd never to apply to her Parliament again in the like Manner, that she order'd a considerable Reduction to be made of her Civil Government Expences. I have seen a Scheme of this Reduction, as it was actually settled a little before her Death, and intended to commence the Lady-Day following. 'Twould be tedious to go through all the particular Articles of it, and I will only name three or four. The Cofferer's-Office Payments were reduc'd from 85,000 l. to 75,000 l. The Allowances for Foreign Ministers, from 75,000 l, to 30,000 l. Pensions and Bounties from upwards of 87,490 l. to 60,000 l, Secret Services from 27,000 l. to 20,000 l. a Sum surprizingly small, when compar'd with the late Disbursements on that Head. In short, the whole yearly Expences were designed to be reduc'd to 459,941 l. and that would have been done without Eclipsing the Glory of the Crown, which, some Gentlemen so roundly affirm, cannot now be maintain'd under almost a double Appointment.
'From hence it appears plainly, that this Argument of the Experience of past Times can have no Reference to the Queen's Reign, It must therefore be apply'd, tho' put in the Plural Number, to the late Administration only; and I confess, if the same Management was to be continu'd, if the same Ministers were to be again employ'd, a Million a Year would not be sufficient to carry on the exorbitant Expences, so often, and so justly complain'd of in this House. For it is notorious, it is fresh in all our Memories, that besides the yearly 700,000 l. there have been many occasional Taxes, many excessive Sums raised, and they have been all sunk in that bottomless Gulf of Secret Service. First, the memorable 250,000 l. was rais'd, in Defiance of the ancient Parliamentary Methods, to secure us from the Apprehensions of a Swedish Invasion, [See Vol. I. p. 116] Then the two Insurance-Offices were erected in as irregular a Manner, by a Bill brought into this House, at the latter End of a Session, and after the Committee of Supply had been closed, upon the honourable Member's Return into Power; and those Bubbles paid near 300,000 l. for their Charters; [See Vol. I. p. 215.] Then a new Scene of Affairs opening in Sweden chang'd our Enmity into an Alliance, and there was a Subsidy of 72,000 l. implicitly granted to make good some secret Bargain and Engagement with that Crown; [See Vol. I. p. 253.] At the same Time near 24,000 l. were given for burning two Merchant-Ships arrived from infected Places; [See Vol. I. p. 255.] but tho' the Goods, as well as the Ships were paid for by this House, that they might, without Injury to the Owners, be destroy'd for the publick Safety, yet most of them were privately convey'd into Counties adjacent to the Port where the Ships lay, and sold there. Then soon after a Sum of 500,000 l. was demanded and granted for the Payment of the Civil List Debts; on which Occasion his late Majesty declared in his Message, 'That He was resolved to cause a Retrenchment to be made of his Expences for the future:' [See Vol. I. p. 257.] But notwithstanding that Resolution, in less than four Years, the Necessities of the Government having render'd the promised Retrenchment impracticable, there was a new Demand, and a new Grant of 500,000 l. more, to discharge new Incumbrances, [See Vol. I. p. 339.] I might mention too the Spanish Ships which were taken in the famous Mediterranean Sea-fight, and, as we have Reason to believe, sold for a considerable Sum of Money. Nor is it possible to forget the 125,000 l. [See Vol. I. p. 385.] which we could only be told, the last Session, in a general unexplain'd Article, was secretly dispos'd of, for the publick Utility, for the Conservation of the Peace of Europe, and for the Security of the Commerce and Navigation of Great Britain.
'After all these and other extraordinary Supplies, I am inform'd there yet remains a Debt in the Civil Government of above 600,000 l. If so, surely there must have been a most egregious Neglect of Duty, to say no worse; there must have been a strange Spirit of Extravagance somewhere, or such immense Sums could never have been so soon, so insensibly, squander'd away. And it is amazing that this Extravagance should happen under the Conduct of Persons pretending to surpass all their Predecessors, in the Knowledge and Care of the Publick Revenue: But we are not to wonder that the World has been free in its Censures, since none of these Sums have been accounted for, since they have been employ'd in Services not fit to be own'd. None but those who were in the Secret, and who had the Disposal of them, can refute the Reflections that are made without Doors, not only on the Ministry, but even on both Houses of Parliament,—I must say no more—But I heartily wish, that Time, the great Discoverer of hidden Truths and concealed Iniquities, may produce a List of all such, if any such there were, who have been perverted from their publick Duty by private Pensions; who have been the hired Slaves, and the corrupt Instruments of a prosuse and vain-glorious Administration. If there have been none such, then the whole Weight, then the whole Guilt of the late Mismanagement lies on the Ministers themselves.
'But it seems to be Matter of universal Joy to the Nation, that the Case is like to be alter'd: We hope we are arrived at a Day of better OEconomy: We hope such Practices will be so far from being imitated, that they will be detested and abhorr'd; nor can any one entertain the least Doubt of this, when he considers that a Prince is ascending the Throne, who will choose a knowing, faithful, and frugal Ministry; who will not permit his Domestick or Foreign Affairs to be negotiated by Bribery and Corruption, for want of Sufficiency and Skill in Politicks; whose Wisdom will enable him, and whose Goodness will incline him, not only to inspect the Management of the Civil List Branches, but in Justice to his Parliaments, and in Compassion to his People, to direct and require a due and exact Disposition of all the other publick Funds, according to their respective Appropriations.
'Now, in Consequence of this most just Notion of his Majesty's Frugality, which, amongst other his innumerable Virtues, endears him so much to his Subjects, I hope I may, without Offence, propose the Addition of some Words to your Question, that may restrain it to 700,000 l: And in this I as much consult the Service of his Majesty, and the Honour and Dignity of the Crown, as those who are for granting the Funds without any Restriction. For, in my humble Opinion, the Voting a greater Sum than was settled on his late Majesty, is only voting an Indemnity, is voting at least in Favour of Ministers whose Conduct, as I have already hinted, if laid before you, and duly examin'd, would perhaps rather deserve your Censure than Approbation.
'Besides, the Surplus of these Branches is appropriated to the Sinking Fund; and, that, I thought had been a Sacred Depositum, reserved for the gradual Discharge of the National Debt: I thought it would have been look'd upon as a Sort of Sacrilege, to have diverted the least Part of it, on any Pretence whatsoever, from its original Uses; and it is as surprizing to me, that the honourable Person should be for destroying his own Darling Project, and that he should be for pulling down the boasted Monument of his Glory; as it may be to others, that I am for supporting any Scheme of his, which might have transmitted his Name with Advantage to Posterity.
'If his Majesty was rightly appriz'd of these Circumstances, he would doubtless rather be content with a clear annual Revenue of 700,000 l. than suffer his first Demand of Money, by any precipitate Proof of our Zeal, to carry the least Appearance of being burthensome to his People, who have long labour'd under the Pressure of grievous and exorbitant Taxes; for he has been graciously pleased to signify from the Throne his fix'd Resolution, [See p. 2.] "By all possible Means to merit their Love and Affection, which he shall always look upon as the best Support and Security of his Crown."
'I will detain you, Sir, no longer, but desire you would conclude your Question with these Words,
'In like Manner as they were granted and continu'd to his late Majesty, which make up the clear yearly Sum of 700,000 l.'
Sir R. Walpole's Motion agreed to, and a Bill order'd thereupon.
To this Speech no Reply was made, but the Question being put, Sir Robert Walpole's Motion was agreed to without any farther Opposition.
July 4. The Resolution of the Committee, in Pursuance of the above Motion, was reported and agreed to, and a Bill order'd to be brought in thereupon.
July 5. The Bill, For the better Support of his Majesty's Houshold, &c. was presented to the House, read the first Time, and order'd to be read a second Time.
July 6. The said Bill was read the second Time, and committed to a Grand Committee; and then Sir Paul Methuen delivered to the House a Message, sign'd by his Majesty, which was read, as follows, viz.
King's Message for settling a Dowry on the Queen.
"His Majesty considering that the Provision made for the Queen his Consort, in Case she should survive his Majesty, is very insufficient to support her Royal Dignity; and that his Majesty is restrained, by the Laws now in being, from increasing the same, thinks it necessary to recommend the making farther Provision for the Queen to your Consideration."
Hereupon it was unanimously resolv'd to take the said Message into Consideration the next Day, in a Committee of the whole House.
100,000 l. per Annum, voted for that Purpose.
July 7. The Commons, in a Grand Committee, took into Consideration his Majesty's Message, and resolv'd, I That a Provision be made for the Queen, in Case she shall survive his Majesty, of 100,000 l. per Annum during her Life, with his Majesty's Palace of Somerset-House, and Richmond OldPark. II. That his Majesty be enabled to charge the said 100,000 l. per Annum on all, or any of the Duties or Revenues, settled for the better Support of his Majesty's Houshold, and the Honour and Dignity of the Crown, which shall subsist after his Majesty's Demise.
July 8. Mr Farrer reported the preceding Day's Resolutions for a Provision for her Majesty, which being agreed to, Nem. Con. a Bill was order'd to be brought in, pursuant to the said Resolutions.
July 10. The Civil List Bill was read the third Time, passed, and sent up to the Lords; then Sir Robert Walpole presented to the House a Bill, To enable his Majesty to settle a Revenue for supporting the Royal Dignity of the Queen, &c. which was read the first Time, and unanimously order'd to be read a second Time.
July 11. The said Bill was read a second Time, and committed to a Committee of the whole House.
July 14. The said Bill was read the third Time, passed, and sent up to the Lords.
July 17. The King went to the House of Peers, with the usual Solemnity, and the Commons attending, his Majesty gave the Royal Assent to an Act, For the better Support of his Majesty's Houshold, and of the Honour and Dignity of the Crown of Great Britain; also to an Act, For enabling his Majesty to settle a Revenue for supporting the Royal Dignity of the Queen, in Case she shall survive his Majesty; and to three other Bills.
After which his Majesty made the following Speech to both Houses:
King's Speech at putting an End to the Parliament.
My Lords and Gentlemen,
"I Cannot but express the greatest Satisfaction in the convincing Proofs you have given me, in this Session, of your Duty and Affection to my Person, and Zeal for my Government.
Gentlemen of the House of Commons,
"I must particularly thank you for your Unanimity and Dispatch, in granting me the Revenues necessary for the Support of my Family, and the Occasions of my Civil Government; which you have done in a Manner so very agreeable, and with such a due Regard to the Honour and Dignity of the Crown, that if any Thing could add to my own Inclinations of making the Happiness of my Subjects my principal Care and Study, this Instance of your particular Confidence in me would engage me more strongly to make Use of the Power, which you have given me of doing Good, in promoting the Honour and Interest of my People.
"The ample Provision you have made for the Queen is another Instance of your Regard for me, which I am consident She will very well deserve, and I shall always acknowledge.
My Lords and Gentlemen,
"It is a great Happiness to me to see the Nation in so prosperous and flourishing a Condition, at the highest Pitch of Glory and Reputation, of great Weight in holding the Balance of Europe, defending themselves in their just Privileges and Possessions, and vindicating the Honour of the Crown of Great Britain.
"At Home I find, among my Protestant Subjects, such mutual Charity and Forbearance diffused throughout the Kingdom, that the National Church repines not at the Indulgence given to scrupulous Consciences; and those, that receive the Benefits of the Toleration, envy not the Establish'd Church the Rights and Privileges which they by Law enjoy.
"From these happy Causes and favourable Conjunctures has flowed that general Tranquility, that Rise of Publick Credit, and that Improvement of Trade and Commerce, which have greatly increased our Wealth and Power, and given us that Respect and Influence Abroad, which has so much advanced the Glory and Happiness of this Nation.
"But all these Blessings, great and valuable as they are, had not been secured and transmitted to us, without your having carefully avoided all Occasions of Strife and Division; without a strict Regard to Publick Faith, a constant Care and Attention towards discharging the National Debt, and without that singular Steadiness and Resolution, which this Parliament has shewed upon all proper and necessary Occasions.
"I can therefore make no doubt, but that your Behaviour, and the Temper you have shewn, will sufficiently recommend this Parliament to the Esteem and good Opinion of their Country; who, from the same Conduct, and by pursuing the same Measures, may promise themselves all future Prosperity.
"The Expiration of this Parliament now drawing near, I will give Orders for issuing the Writs for calling and electing a new Parliament, as soon it can conveniently be done; and I am persuaded that the general Contest and Emulation in Expressions of Duty and Affection to me, which, to my great Satisfaction, I have universally met with, will be farther demonstrated by the Choice of a Parliament, zealously affected to our present happy Establishment in the Protestant Succession; and in Return, nothing shall be wanting on my Part, that can contribute towards improving a good Correspondence and Harmony between me and my People, and that can tend to perfect and perpetuate the Happiness of Great Britain."
The Parliament dissolv'd.
Then the Lord Chancellor prorogued the Parliament to the 29th of August; but on the 7th of the same Month a Proclamation was issued for dissolving this Parliament, and Calling of another.