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advantage, by any part of a Report, founded authors of the original declarations, who may be upon partial evidence, taken in my absence, collected from the Report to be Sir John and upon charges, not yet communicated to me, Lady Douglas, are my only accusers; and the until your Majesty had heard, what might be declarations which are said to have followed, are alleged in my behalf, in answer to it. But your the declarations of persons adduced as witnesses Majesty will not be surprised nor displeased, by Sir John and Lady Douglas, to confirm their that I, a woman, a stranger to the laws, and accusation; or whether such declarations are the usages of your Majesty's kingdom, under charges, charges of persons, who have made themselves aimed, originally, at my life and honour, should also, the anthors of distinct accusations against hesitate to determine, in what manner I ought me. -The requests, which, I humbly hope, to act, even under the present circumstances, your Majesty will think reasonable, and just to with respect to such accusations, without the grant, and which are suggested by these further assistance of advice in which I could confide. observations are,First, That your Majesty And I have had submitted to me the following would be graciously pleased to direct, that I observations, respecting the copies of the papers should be furnished with copies of these declawith which I have been furnished. And I hum- rations: and, if they are rightly described, in bly solicit from your Majesty's gracious conde- the Report, as the necessary foundation of all scension and justice a compliance with the re- the proceedings of the Commissioners, your Maquests, which arise out of them.In the first jesty could not, I am persuaded, but have graplace, it has been observed to me, that these ciously intended, in directing that I should be copies of the Report, and of the accompanying furnished with a copy of the Report, that I papers, have come unauthenticated by the sig- should also see this essential part of the pronature of any person, high, or low, whose ve- ceeding, the foundation on which it rests.racity, or even accuracy, is pledged for their Secondly, That I may be informed whether I correctness, or to whom resort might be had, if have one or more, and how many accusers; and it should be necessary, hereafter, to establish, who they are; as the weight and credit of the that these papers are correct copies of the ori- accusation cannot but be much affected by the ginals. I am far from insinuating that the want quarter from whence it originates.--Thirdly, of such attestations was intentional. No doubt That I may be informed of the time when the it was omitted through inadvertence; but its declarations were made. For the weight and importance is particularly confirmed by the credit of the accusation must, also, be much state, in which the copy of Mrs. Lisle's examina- affected by the length of time, which my action has been transmitted to me. For in the cusers may have been contented to have been third page of that examination there have been the silent depositories of those heavy matters of two erasures; on one of which, some words guilt, and charge; and,Lastly, That your have been, subsequently introduced, apparently Majesty's goodness will secure to me a speedy in a different hand-writing from the body of the return of these papers, accompanied, I trust, examination; and the passage, as it stands, is with the further information which I have soprobably incorrect, because the phrase is unin- licited; but at all events a speedy return of telligible. And this occurs in an important part them. And your Majesty will see, that it is not of her examination. The humble, but earnest without reason, that I make this last request, request, which I have to make to your Majesty, when your Majesty is informed, that, though which is suggested by this observation, is, that the Report appears to have been made upon the your Majesty would be graciously pleased to 14th of July, yet it was not sent to me, till the direct, that the Report, and the papers which 11th of the present month. A similar delay, I accompany it, and which, for that purpose, I should, of all things, deplore. For it is with venture to transmit to your Majesty with this reluctance, that I yield to those suggestions, letter, may be examined, and then returned to which have induced me today, these my humble me, authenticated as correct, under the signa- requests, before your Majesty, since they must, ture of some person, who. having attested their at all events, in some degree, delay the arrival accuracy, may be able to prove it.In the of that moment, to which, I look forward with second place, it has been observed to me, that so earnest, and eager an impatience; when I the Report proceeds, by reference to certain confidently feel, I shall completely satisfy your written declarations, which the Commissioners Majesty, that the whole of these charges are describe as the necessary foundation of all their alike unfounded; and are all parts of the same proceedings, and which contain, as I presume, conspiracy against me. Your Majesty, so sathe charge or information against my conduct. tisfied, will, I can have no doubt, be as anxious Yet copies of these written declarations have as myself, to secure to me that redress, which not been given to me. They are described, in- the laws of your kingdom (administering, under deed, in the Report, as consisting in certain your Majesty's just dispensation, equal protecstatements, respecting my conduct, imputing tion and justice, to every description of your not only, gross impropriety of behaviour, but Majesty's subjects), are prepared to afford to expressly asserting facts of the most confirmed, those, who are so deeply injured as I have been. and abandoned criminality, for which, if true, That I have in this case, the strongest claim to my life might be forfeited. These are stated to your Majesty's justice, I am confident I shall have been followed by declarations from other prove: but I cannot, as I am advised, so satispersons, who, though not speaking to the same factorily establish that claim, till your Majesty's facts, had related other particulars, in them-goodness shall have directed me, to be furnished selves extremely suspicious, and still more so, as connected with the assertions already mentioned. On this, it is observed to me, that it is most important that I should know the extent, and the particulars of the charges or informations against me, and by what accusers they have been made; whether I am answering the charges of one set of accusers, or more. Whether the'
with an authentic statement of the actual charges
commands, in case it should be Her Royal High-
Lincoln's Inn Fields, Aug. 19th, 1806. The Lord Chancellor has the honour to transmit to Her Royal Highness the Princess of Wales the papers desired by Her Royal Highness, just as he received them a few minutes ago from Earl Spenser, with the note accompanying them.
Aug. 20th, 1806. The Lord Chancellor has the honour to return, to Her Royal Highness the Princess of Wales, the box, as he received it this morning from His Majesty. It contains the papers he formerly sent to Her Royal Ilighness, and which he sends as they are, thinking that it may be, in the mean time, most agreeable to her Royal Highness.The reason of their not having been authenticated by the Lord Chancellor, was, that he received them as copies from Earl Spencer, who was in possession of the originals; and he could *N. B. These papers, being the original de, not, therefore, with propriety, do so, not hav-clarations, on which the inquiry proceeded, will ing himself compared them; but her Royal be found in Appendix (A.) Highness may depend upon having other copies sent to her, which have been duly examined and certified to be so.- The box will be delivered to one of Her Royal Highness's Pages in waiting, by the principal officer attendant upon the Lord Chancellor, and he trusts he shall find full credit with Her Royal Highness; that in sending a servant formerly with the papers the moment he received them (no messenger being in waiting, and the officers who attend him being detained by their duties in court), he could not be supposed to have intended any possible disrespect, which he is incapable of shewing to any lady, but most especially to any member of His Majesty's Royal family.
To Her Royal Highness the Princess of Wales.
Aug. 31, 1806. Her Royal Highness the Princess of Wales acquaints the Lord Chancellor, that the gentleman with whom Her Royal Highness advises, and who had possession of the copies of the offi. cial papers communicated to Her Royal Highness by the Lord Chancellor, returned from the country late yesterday evening. Upon the subject of transmitting these papers to the Lord Chancellor, for the purpose of their being examined and authenticated, and then returned to Her Royal Highness, he states, that in consequence of the Lord Chancellor's assurance, contained in his note of the 20th instant, that Her Royal Highness might depend upon having other copies sent to her, which had been duly examined and certified to be so; he has relied upon being able to Lincoln's Inn Fields, Aug. 24th, 1806. refer to those already sent, and therefore it His Majesty has been pleased to transmit to would be inconvenient to part with them at preme the letter which he has received from your sent: and Her Royal Highness therefore hopes, Royal Highness, dated the 17th instant; and to that the Lord Chancellor will procure for her the direct that I should communicate the same to other authenticated copies, which his Lordship the Lords Commissioners who had been com- promised in his note of the 20th inst.—With manded by His Majesty to report to His Ma- respect to the copies already sent, being, as the jesty on the matters therein referred to; and I Lord Chancellor expresses it, in his letter of the have now received His Majesty's further com- 24th instant, "judged to be duly authenticated mands, in consequence of that letter, to acquaint" according to the usual course and forms of of your Royal Highness, that when I transmitted to "fice, and sufficiently so for the purpose for your Royal Highness, by the King's commands," which His Majesty had been graciously pleased and under my signature, the copies of official papers, which had been laid before His Majesty," those papers were judged thereby duly authenticated, according to the usual course and forms of office; and sufficiently so, for the purposes for which His Majesty has been graciously pleased to direct them to be communicated to your Royal Highness.That, 'nevertheless, there does not appear to be any reason for His Majesty's declining a compliance with the request which your Royal Highness has been advised to make, that those copies should, after being examined with the originals, be attested by some person to be named for that purpose: and that, if your Royal Highness will do me the honour to transmit them to me, they shall be examined and attested accordingly, after correcting any errors that may have occurred in the copying.—His Majesty has further authorized me to acquaint" from Earl Spencer, who was in possession of your Royal Highness, that he is graciously "the originals, and he could not, therefore, with pleased, on your Royal Highness's request, to propriety do so, not having himself compared consent that copies of the written declarations "them."referred to in the Report of the Lords Commis-portunity of acknowledging the receipt of the -Her Royal Highness takes this opsioners, should be transmitted to your Royal declarations referred to in the Commissioners' Highness, and that the same will be trans- Report. mitted accordingly, so soon as they can be To the Lord Chancellor. transcribed.
ERSKINE, C. The Lord Chancellor has the honour to add to the above official communication, that his Pursebearer respectfully waits her Royal Highness's
to direct them to be communicated to His Royal Highness, because they were transmit"ted to her, by the King's commands, and under "bis Lordship's signature."-Her Royal Highness could never have wished for a more authentic attestation, if she had conceived that they were authenticated under such signature. But she could not think that the mere signature of his Lordship, on the outside of the envelope which contained them, could afford any authenticity to the thirty papers which that envelope contained; or could, in any manner, identify any of those papers as having been contained in that envelope. And she had felt herself confirmed in of the 20th instant," that the reason of their not that opinion, by his Lordship's saying in his note "having been authenticated by the Lord Chan"cellor was, that he received them as copies
Lincoln's Inn Fields, Sept. 2d, 1806. The Lord Chancellor has taken the earliest opportunity in his power of complying with the wishes of Her Royal Highness the Princess of
To Her Royal Highness the Princess of Wales.
Wales. He made the promise of other copies, your Majesty's presence for seven months, pend. without any communication with the other Coming an inquiry which your Majesty had directed missioners, wholly from a desire to shew every to be made into my conduct, affecting both my kind of respect and accommodation to Her Royal life and my honour-after that inquiry had at Highness, in any thing consistent with his duty, length terminated in the advice of your Majesty's and not at all from any idea that the papers, as Confidential and Sworn Servants, that there was originally sent, (though there might be errors in no longer any reason for your Majesty's declining the copying), were not sufficiently authenticat- to receive me after your Majesty's gracious ed; an opinion, which, he is obliged to say, he is communication, which led me to rest assured not removed from; nevertheless, the Lord Chan- that your Majesty would appoint an early day to cellor has a pleasure in conforming to Her Royal receive me if, after all this, by a renewed apHighness's wishes, and has the honour to enclose plication on the part of the Prince of Wales the attested copies of the Depositions, as he has (upon whose communications the first inquiry received them from Earl Spencer. had been directed), I now find, that that punishment to which I had been condemned during the same seven months' inquiry previous to the determination in my favour, should, contrary to the opinion of your Majesty's Servants, be continued after that determination, to await the result of some new proceeding, to be suggested by the Lawyer of the Prince of Wales, it is impossible that I can fail to assert to your Majesty, with the effort due to truth, that I am, in the consciousness of my own innocence, and with a strong sense of my unmerited sufferings, Sire, your Majesty's most dutiful and affectionate, but much injured, subject and daughter-in-law, (Signed) CAROLINE. Montague-house, Blackheath, Feb. 12, 1807.
[The two following I etters, not in the Book, copied
from Morning Herald, March 17, 1815.]
* Her Royal Highness the Princess of Wales to the King.
SIRE-In discharge of the duty I owe to myself, and the great duty I owe to your Majesty and your Illustrious Family, I bave herewith transmitted a statement, which I confidently trust will appear to prove me not unworthy of the protection and favour with which your Majesty has pleased to honour me.--' To be restored to that favour and protection, in consequence of a conviction in your Majesty's mind of my innocence, produced by the Papers I now humbly lay before your Majesty, is the first wish of my heart.- -Grieved, Sire, deeply grieved as I cannot but be, that your Majesty should be exposed to so much trouble on so painful an occasion, and, on my account, it is yet my humble trust that your Majesty will graciously forgive me, if extreme anxiety about my honour, and your Majesty's favourable opinion, leads me humbly to solicit, as an act of justice, that scrupulous attention on your Majesty's part to these Papers, which cannot fail, I think, to produce, in your Majesty's mind, a full conviction of my innocence, and a due sense of the injuries I have suffered.- One other prayer I with all possible humility and anxiety address to your Majesty, that, as I can hope for no happiness, nor expect to enjoy the benefit of that fair reputation to which I know I am entitled, till I am re-admitted into your Majesty's presence, and as I am in truth without guilt, suffering what to me is heavy punishment, whilst I am denied access to your Majesty, your Majesty will be graciously pleased to form an early determination whether my conduct and my sufferings do not authorize me to hope that the blessing of being restored to your Majesty's presence may be conferred upon, Sire, your Majesty's dutifully attached, affectionate, and afflicted daughter-in-law and subject. Blackheath, Oct. 2, 1806.
Her Royal Highness the Princess of Wales to the
Copy of a Letter from Her Royal Highness the
Sire, When I last troubled your Majesty upon my unfortunate business, I had raised my mind to hope that I should have the happiness of hearing from your Majesty, and receiving your gracious commands to pay my duty in your Royal presence before the expiration of the last week; and, when that hope was disappointed, eagerly clinging to any idea which offered me a prospect of being saved from the necessity of having recourse (for the vindication of my character) to the publication of the proceedings upon the inquiry into my conduct, thought it just possible, that the reason for my not having received your Majesty's commands to that effect might have been occasioned by the circumstance of your Majesty's staying at Windsor through the whole of the week. I, therefore, determined to wait a few days longer before Í took a step which, when once taken, could not be recalled. Having, however, now assured myself that your Majesty was in town yesterday, -as I have received no command to wait
upon your Majesty, and no intimation of your pleasure,-I am reduced to the necessity of abandoning all hope that your Majesty will comply with my humble, my earnest, and anxious request.Your Majesty, therefore, will not be surprised to find that the publication, of the proceedings alluded to will not be withheld beyond Monday next. As to any consequences which may arise from such publication, unpleasant or hurtful to my own feelings and interests, I may perhaps be properly responsible,-and in any event have no one to complain of but myself, and those with whose advice I have acted; and whatever those consequences may be, I am fully and unalterably convinced that they must be incalculably less than those which I should be exposed to from my silence. But as to any other consequences, unpleasant or hurtful to the feelings and interests of others, or of the Public,
SIRE-I received yesterday, and with inexpressible pain, your Majesty's last verbal communication. The duty of stating, in a representation to your Majesty, the various grounds upon which I feel the hardships of my case, and upon which, I confidently think, that upon a review of it, your Majesty will be disposed to recal your last determination, is one I owe to myself; and I cannot forbear, at the moment when I acknowledge the receipt of your Majesty's letter, to announce to your Majesty, that I propose to execute that duty without delay.After hav-my ing suffered the punishment of banishment from
conscience will certainly acquit me of them. I am confident that I have not acted impa
tiently or precipitately. To avoid coming to |
gatived the principal charge of substantive crime, should have entertained considerations of matters that amounted to no legal offence, and which were adduced, not as substantive charges in themselves, but as matters in support of the principal accusation; That through the pressure and weight of their official occupations, they did not, perhaps could not, bestow that attention on the case, which, if given to it, must have enabled them to detect the villany and falsehood of my accusers, and their foul conspiracy against me; and must have preserved my character from the weighty imputation which the authority of the Commissioners has, for a time, cast upon it; but, above all, that they should, upon this ex parte examination, without hearing one word that I could urge, have reported to your Majesty an opinion on these matters, so prejudicial to my honour, and from which I can have no appeal to the laws of the country, (because the charges, constituting no legal of fence, cannot be made the ground of a judicial un-inquiry ;)-These and many other circumstances connected with the length of the Proceeding, which have cruelly aggravated, to my feelings, the pain necessarily attendant upon this Inquiry, I shall not be able to refrain from stating, and urging, as matters of serious lamentation at least, if not of well-grounded complaint. In commenting upon any part of the circumstances, which have occurred in the course of this Inqui ry, whatever observations I may be compelled to make upon any of them, I trust, I shall never forget what is due to offeers in high station and employment, under your Majesty. No apology, therefore, can be required for any reserve in my expressions towards them. But if, in vindicating my innocence against the injustice and malice of my enemies, I should appear to your Majesty not to express myself with all the warmth and indignation which innocence, so foully calumniated, must feel, your Majesty will, I trust, not attribute my forbearance to any insensibility to the grievous injuries I have sustained; but will graciously be pleased to ascribe it to the restraint I have imposed upon myself, lest in endeavouring to describe in just terms the motives, the conduct, the perjury, and all the foul circumstances, which characterize and establish the malice of my ac cusers, I might use language, which, though not unjustly applied to them, might be improper to be used by me to any body, or unfit to be employed by any body, humbly, respectfully, and dutifully addressing your Majesty.That a fit opportunity has occured for laying open my heart to your Majesty, perhaps, I shall, hereafter, have no reason to lament. than two years, I had been informed, that, upon the presumption of some misconduct in me, my behaviour had been made the subject of investigation, and my neighbours and servants had been examined concerning it. And for some time I had received mysterious and indistiuct intimations, that some great mischief was meditated towards me. circumstances of my very peculiar situation, it And, in all the will not be thought strange, that however conscious I was, that I had no just cause of fear, I should yet feel some uneasiness on this account. With surprise certainly (because the first tidings were of a kind to excite surprise), but without alarm, I received the intelligence, that, for some reason, a formal investigation of some parts of my conduct had been advised, and had actually
To the King. Sire,-Impressed with the deepest sentiments of gratitude for the countenance and protection which I have hitherto uniformly received from your Majesty, I approach you with a heart dismayed upon this occasion, so awful and momentous to my character, my honour, and my happiness. I should indeed, (under charges such as have now been brought against me,) prove myself undeserving of the continuance of that countenance and protection, and altogether unworthy of the high station, which I hold in your Majesty's illustrious family, if I sought for any partiality, for any indulgence, for any thing more than what is due to me in justice. My entire confidence in your Majesty's virtues assures me that I cannot meet with less. The situation, which I have been so happy as to hold in your Majesty's good opinion and esteem; my station in your Majesty's august family; my life, my honour, and, through mine, the honour of your Majesty's family have been attacked. Sir John and Lady Douglas have attempted to support a direct and precise charge, by which they have dared to impute to me, the enormous guilt of High Treason, committed in the foul crime of Adultery. In this charge, the extravagance of their malice has defeated itself. The Report of the Lords Commissioners, acting under your Majesty's warrant, has most fully cleared me of that charge. But there remain imputations, strangely sanctioned and countenanced by that Report, on which I cannot remain silent, with out incurring the most fatal consequences to my honour and character. For it states to your Majesty, that" The circumstances detailed against me must be credited, till they are decisively contradicted." To contradict, with as much decision as the contradiction of an accused can convey; to expose the injustice and malice of my enemies; to shew the utter impossibility of giving credit to their testimony; and to vindicate my own innocence, will be the objects, Sire, of this letter. In the course of my pursus ing these objects, I shall have much to complain of, in the substance of the Proceeding itself, and much in the manner of conducting it. That any of these charges should ever have been entertained upon testimony so little worthy of belief, which betrayed, in every sentence, the malice in which it originated; that, even if they were entertained at all, Your Majesty should have been advised to pass by the ordinary legal modes of Inquiry into such high crimes, and to refer them to a Commission, open to all the objection, which I shall have to state to such a mode of In quiry; that the Commissioners, after having me
"be questioned;" and their infamous stories and
taken place. His Royal Highness the Duke of Kent, on the 7th of June, announced it to me. He announced to me, the Princess of Wales, in the first communication made to me, with respect to this proceeding, the near approach of two attorneys (one of them, I since find, the solicitor employed by Sir John Douglas), claiming to enter my dwelling, with a warrant, to take away one half of my household, for immediate examination upon a charge against myself. Of the nature of that charge I was then uninformed. It now appears, it was the charge of High Treason, committed in the infamous crime of adultery. His Royal Highness, I am sure, will do me the justice to represent to your Majesty, that I betrayed no fear, that I manifested no symptonis of conscious guilt, that I sought no excuses to prepare, or to tutor, my servants for the examination which they were to undergo. The only request which I made to His Royal Highness was, that he would have the goodness to remain with me till my servants were gone; that he might bear witness, that I had no conversation with them before they went. In truth, Sire, my anxieties, under a knowledge that some serious mischief was planning against me, and while I was ignorant of its quality and extent, had been great that I could not but rejoice at an event, which seemed to promise me an early opportunity of ascertaining what the malice of my enemies intended against me. It has not been, indeed, without impatience the most painful, that I have passed the interval, which has since elapsed. When once it was not only known to me, but to the world (for it was known to the world), that Inquiry of the gravest nature had been instituted into my conduct, I looked to the conclusion with all the eagerness that could belong to an absolute conviction, that my innocence and my honour, to the disgrace and confusion of my accusers, would be established; and that the groundless malice and injustice of the whole charge would be manifested to the world, as widely as the calumny had been circulated. I knew that the result of an ex parte inquiry, from its very nature, could not, unless it fully asserted my entire innocence, be in any degree just. And I had taught myself most firmly to believe, that it was utterly impossible that any opinion which could, in the smallest degree, work a pre-diate notification of the fact that it did acquit judice to my honour and character, could ever be me. That if it condemned me, the weight of expressed in any terms, by any persons, in a such a sentence should not have been left to set. Report upon a solemn formal Inquiry, and more tle in any mind, much less upon your Majesty's, especially to your Majesty, without my having for a month, before I could even begin to presome notice and some opportunity of being pare an answer, which, when begun, could not heard. And I was convinced that, if the pro- speedily be concluded; and that, if the Report ceeding allowed me, before an opinion was ex- could be represented as both acquitting and con pressed, the ordinary means which accused per- demning me, the reasons, which suggested the sons have, of vindicating their honour and their propriety of an early communication in each of innocence, my honour and my innocence must, the former cases, combined to make it proper in any opinion which could then be expressed, and necessary in the latter.And why all con be fully vindicated and effectually established. sideration of my feelings was thus cruelly neg. What then, Sire, must have been my astonish-lected; why was I kept upon the rack, during ment and my dismay, when I saw, that notwithstanding the principal accusation was found to be utterly false, yet some of the witnesses to those charges which were brought in support of the principal accusation, witnesses whom any person, interested to have protected my character, would easily have shewn, out of their own months, to be utterly unworthy of credit, and confederates in foul conspiracy with my false accusers, are reported to be "free from all sus"picion of unfavourable bias;" their veracity, in the judgment of the Commissioners, not to
all this time, ignorant of the result of a charge, which affected my honour and my life; and why, especially in a case where such grave matters were to continue to be "credited, to the preju
* The time that the Inquiry was pending, after this notice of it, is here confounded with the time which elapsed before the Report was com municated to her Royal Highness. The Inquiry itself only lasted to the 14th or 16th of July, which is but between five and six weeks from the 7th of June.