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Speech on Economical Reform, p. 33. MEN of condition naturally love to be about a court, and women of condition love it much But there is in all regular attendance so much of constraint, that if it were a mere charge *; without any compensation, you would soon have the court deserted by all the nobility of the king
dom. The most serious mischiefs would follow
the justice of the kingdom bent and gave way; the foreign ministers remained inactive and unprovided; the system of Europe was dissolved; the chain of our alliances was broken; all the wheels of government at home and abroad were stopped-because the king's turnspit was a member of parliament.
1 from such a desertion. Kings are naturally lovers of low company. They are so elevated above all the rest of mankind, that they must look upon all their subjects as on a level. They are rather
apt to hate than to love their nobility, on account of the occasional resistance to their will, which will be made by their virtue, their petulance, or their pride. It must indeed be admitted, that many of the nobility are as perfectly willing to act the part of flatterers, tale bearers, parasites,
pimps, and buffoons, as any of the lowest and vilest of mankind. But they are not properly qualified for this object of their ambition. The or want of a regular education, and early habits, and some lurking remains of their dignity, will never permit them to become a match for an
Italian eunuch, a mountebank, a fidler, a player, or any regular practitioner of that tribe.
Ib. p. 55:
ALL the prostitutes who set themselves to sale, all the locusts who devour the land, with crowds of spies, parasites and sycophants, and whole swarms of little, noisome, nameless insects, will hum and buzz in every corner of the court.A sort of men too low to be much regarded, and too high to be quite neglected, the lumber of every administration, the furniture of every court. These gilt carved things are seldom answerable for more than the men on a chess board, who are moved about at will, and on whom the conduct of the game is not to be charged. Some of these every prince must have about him. The pageantry of a court requires that he should.
Idea of a Patriot King.
I HAVE known courts these thirty-six years, and know they differ; but in some things they are extremely constant. First in the trite old maxim of a minister's never forgiving those he hath injured. Secondly, in the insincerity of those who would be thought the best friends. Thirdly, in the love of fawning, cringing, and tale-bearing. Fourthly, in sacrificing those, whom we really wish well, to a point of interest or intrigue. Fifthly, in keeping every thing worth taking, for those who can do service or dissservice.
Works, vol. ix. p. 349. Letter to Gay.
HERE FLATT'RY, eldest born of GUILE,
The Duellist, vol. i. p. 75.
THIS Court is equal to any other in artifice and cunning, and his majesty as great an adept in the arts of dissimulation; and though it is generally so coarse, so ill covered, as to deceive hardly any body, yet all are forced to pretend to be deceived.
JARDINE. Letters from Barbary, &c. vol. i. p. 42.
In the reign of Queen Elizabeth, we read of one whom the grandees of the court procured to be made secretary of state only to break his back in the business of the Queen of Scots, whose death they were then projecting. Like true courtiers, they first engage him in that fatal scene, and then desert him in it, using him only as a tool to do a present state job, and then to be reproached and ruined for what he had done. And a little observation of the world may show us, there is not only a course of beheading or hanging, but preferring men out of the way.
*Davison. See the transaction at length in Hume's History of England, vol, v. p. 310.
HAD it not been for the presence of the queen mother, Fouquet would have been arrested at his own house on the very evening of that magnificent entertainment, which he gave to Louis XIV. at his splendid chateau of Vaux. Just before his disgrace the king treated him with all the marks of a decided partiality. Princes, I know not for what reason, generally affect to overwhelm with tokens of their regard those of their subjects whom they have resolved to ruin.
WHY I can smile, and murder while I smile;
Louis XIV. vol. ii.
Third part K. Henry VI. Act iii.
Is that poor man, that hangs on princes favours!
Henry VIII. act iii.
GOD help the man, condemn'd by cruel fate
Much sorrow shall he feel, and suffer more
And wear a smile with anguish in his heart.
When he at last expects, good easy man,
Night, vol. i. p. 84.
THIS is not Lisbon, nor the circle this Where like a statue thou hast stood besieg'd By sycophants, and fools, the growth of courts A Where thy gull'd eyes in all the gaudy round Met nothing but a lie in every face; And the gross flattery of a gaping crowd, Envious who first should catch and first applaud The stuff or royal nonsense: when I spoke, dooM