Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Fox, Charles James
FOX, CHARLES JAMES (1749–1806), statesman, third son of Henry Fox [q. v.], afterwards Baron Holland of Foxley, and Lady Caroline Georgina, daughter of Charles Lennox, second duke of Richmond, grandson of Charles II, was born in Conduit Street on 24 Jan. 1749; Holland House, which was then rented by his father, being under repair. He was a clever, lively child, and a great favourite with his father. When his mother grieved over his passionate temper, Henry Fox said that he was a ‘sensible little fellow,’ and would soon cure himself; nothing was to be done ‘to break his spirit’ (Wraxall, Memoirs, ii. 2). At his own request he was in 1756 sent to a school at Wandsworth, kept by a M. Pampellone, where there were many boys of high rank, and in the autumn of 1758 he went to Eton, where Dr. Philip Francis [q. v.] was his private tutor. At Eton he was studious and popular. Unfortunately in 1763 his father, then Lord Holland, who ‘brought up his children without the least regard to morality,’ interrupted his school life by taking him with him to Paris and to Spa. During this excursion, which lasted for four months, Lord Holland encouraged the boy to indulge in vice, and at Spa sent him to the gaming-table well supplied with money (Life and Times, i. 4). Fox returned to Eton, and the tone of the school is said to have suffered from the ‘extravagant, vulgar indulgence’ with which his father treated him and his brother (Early Life, p. 52); he learnt to write creditable Latin verses, had a good acquaintance with French, took a prominent part in the school debates and recitations, and was looked upon by his schoolfellows as certain to become famous as an orator. In October 1764 he entered at Hertford College, Oxford, then much frequented by young men of family. Unlike his companions, Fox studied diligently, giving much time to mathematics, which he liked ‘vastly,’ and professed to consider ‘entertaining’ (Memorials, i. 19). He visited Paris in the spring of the next year, returned to Oxford in July, and spent the greater part of the long vacation in study. He left the university in the spring of 1766, having spent his time there to good purpose; for he read much of the early English dramatists, and acquired the power of enjoying Latin and Greek literature, which proved an unfailing source of pleasure to him in later life. In the autumn he joined his father and mother at Lyons, and spent the winter with them at Naples. When they returned to England in the spring, he remained in Italy with two friends of his own age. He joined Lord and Lady Holland in the autumn at Paris, and spent the winter with them at Nice, for he was a good and affectionate son. In the spring of 1768 he returned to Italy with his cousin, Lord Carlisle, and visited Bologna, Florence, and Rome. On his homeward journey he called on Voltaire at Ferney, and was received graciously. His birth and connections secured him a welcome at foreign courts, and his father's great wealth enabled him to travel magnificently, and indulge every whim, however extravagant. At the same time he did not give himself up to frivolity. He visited picture galleries with appreciation, perfected himself in French, learnt Italian, and studied Italian literature. He returned to England on 2 Aug., and soon afterwards made a short tour with his elder brother Stephen and his wife in the Austrian Netherlands and Holland.
As a young man Fox was strongly built; his frame was large, and he had a handsome face, bright eyes, high colour, and black hair. He soon became very stout, and his enemies considered that in manhood his swarthy countenance had a ‘saturnine’ aspect, but his smile was always pleasant (Wraxall, Memoirs, ii. 3). From childhood he was courted for his gaiety, originality, and genius. He was perfectly good-natured, eager, warm-hearted, and unselfish. With great natural abilities, a singular quickness of apprehension, and a retentive memory, he combined the habit of doing all things with his might. He was, as he said, a ‘very painstaking man,’ and even when secretary of state wrote copies for a writing-master to improve his handwriting (Rogers, Table-talk, p. 85). He delighted in literature and art, his critical faculty was acute, and his taste cultivated. Poetry was to him ‘the best thing after all,’ and he declared that he loved ‘all the poets.’ He had already acquired a considerable store of learning, and the works of his favourite authors, Greek, Latin, English, French, Italian, and in his later years Spanish, never failed to afford him refreshment and, when he needed it, consolation. He was fond of exercise, and even after he had become very fat retained his activity; he played cricket and tennis well, loved hunting, racing, and shooting, and was a good walker and swimmer. During his long tour he constantly referred in his letters to acting plays; he took pains to excel as an amateur actor, and retained his love for this amusement for some few years. Unfortunately his father's teaching was not thrown away, and he early acquired extravagant and dissolute habits. In his younger days he was an outrageous fop, and led the fashion among the ‘macaronis.’ After his visit to Italy he and his cousin posted from Paris to Lyons simply in order to choose patterns for their waistcoats (ib. p. 74); he appeared in London in red-heeled shoes and blue hair-powder, and up to the age of twenty-five, sometimes at least, wore a hat and feather in the House of Commons. In later life he became careless both as to dress and cleanliness. He drank, though perhaps not so hard as many men in his position, and was much addicted to gambling. When a mere boy he became a member of Almack's [see Almack, William] gaming club, which was the scene of the most reckless play, and night after night lost sums that soon reached a ruinous amount.
In March 1768, when Fox was in his twentieth year, he was returned for the borough of Midhurst in Sussex, which his father and uncle, Lord Ilchester, had bought for their sons. He took his seat in the following November, and, influenced by the wishes and resentments of his father, joined the supporters of the Duke of Grafton's administration. His first speech was probably made on 9 March 1769, on a point of order. He took an active part in promoting the candidature of Colonel Luttrell for Middlesex, in opposition to Wilkes. On 14 April he spoke with some insolence in support of the motion that Luttrell ought to have been returned, and in the debate on the Middlesex petition on 8 May answered Wedderburn and Burke in a speech which, in spite of some boyishness, delighted his friends, and was praised even by the opposition (ib. p.53; Cavendish, Debates, i. 406). This speech won him a place among the foremost members of the house. On 9 Oct. he went to Paris with his father and mother, and while there lost heavily at play (Lettres de la Marquise du Deffand, i. 355, 356). He returned to England early in January 1770, and won great applause by two speeches on the Middlesex election. On 24 Feb., when just past twenty-one, he entered Lord North's administration as one of the lords of the admiralty. Fox delivered his speeches without previous preparation, and their power lay not in rhetorical adornments, but in the vigour of the speaker's thoughts, the extent of his knowledge, the quickness with which he grasped the significance of each point in debate, the clearness of his conceptions, and the remarkable plainness with which he laid them before his audience. Even in his longest speeches he never strayed from the matter in hand; he never rose above the level of his hearers' understanding, was never obscure, and never bored the house. Every position that he took up he defended with a large number of shrewd arguments, plainly stated and well ordered. The training in elocution that he had received at Eton and his practice as an amateur actor gave him confidence and ease, while the accuracy and readiness of his memory supplied him with a store of quotations, and rendered him never at a loss for a word. At the same time he does not appear to have been particularly fluent until he became warmed with his subject; then he spoke with a stormy eloquence which carried his hearers with him. His voice was naturally poor, and though he generally modulated it skilfully, he was apt when excited to speak with shrillness. His action was ungraceful. His attempts at pathos generally failed; he was prone to invective, and is said to have been the wittiest speaker of his time. Although some of his speeches introducing subjects to the house are magnificent, he especially excelled in reply; for great as he was as an orator, he was certainly greater in debate. During the first period of his political career, when he was generally contemptuous of popular rights, he spoke with too much flippancy; but ‘in his best days,’ when he was attacking North's administration during the American war, he was in Grattan's opinion the best speaker he had ever heard (Last Journals, i. 85, with a comparison between Fox, Burke, and Townshend; Erskine, Preface to Speeches; Brougham, Statesmen, i. 236; Quarterly Review, art. by Frere, October 1810; Early Life, p. 331).
In June Fox was in Paris with his father; in November he was supping with Lauzun at the Clob à l'Anglaise, and he returned to England about the middle of January 1771. Much as he loved Paris, he was no favourite with Mme. du Deffand, who described him as ‘hard, bold, and ready;’ he did not, she complained, put his mind to hers, and cared only for play and politics (Lettre, 13 Jan. 1771, ii. 139. See also a somewhat similar character of him by Mme. Neckar, who in 1777 spoke of him as knowing everything, and as cold and cynical, Gibbon, Miscell. Works, ii. 194). Of the two she preferred Richard Fitzpatrick [q. v.], Fox's connection by marriage, and his constant companion, who at this time shared the lodgings in Piccadilly where Fox lived when his father was absent from Holland House. After joining the administration Fox took a prominent part in several unpopular measures, and especially in the attempt to restrain the press. When on 6 Dec. a committee on the press laws was moved for, he opposed the motion, and jeered the opposition for their declaration that they wished to 'satisfy the people.’ Where, he asked, was he to look for the complaints of the people? he refused to recognise the people apart from the majority of the house, their legal representatives (Speeches, i. 5). He took the same line on 25 March 1771, when urging the committal of Alderman Oliver for discharging the printers apprehended by the officers of the house. His action in this affair rendered him exceedingly unpopular, and on the 27th he and his brother were attacked by a mob as they drove down to the house, and he was rolled in the mud. Zealous for privilege of every kind, he gave much satisfaction to his party ‘by the great talents he exerted’ in opposing the Nullum Tempos Bill. Junius had hitherto virtually left him alone, but his opposition to the popular cause of the Duke of Portland called forth a sharp rebuke in the ‘Public Advertiser’ of 4 March, signed ‘Ulysses.’ Fox wished to challenge the writer, but was unable to identify him (Life of Sir P. Francis, i. 255). A letter of Junius in October provoked an answer signed ‘An Old Correspondent,’ which was attributed to Fox. A reply appeared signed ‘Anti-Fox,’ in which the writer warns ‘my pretty black boy’ that if provoked Junius might cease to spare Lord Holland and his family (Letters of Junius, ii. 384). His contempt for the wishes of the people provoked a caricature entitled ‘The Death of the Foxes’ in the ‘Oxford Magazine’ of February 1770. In this he appears with his father and brother, and his corpulence is ridiculed. Another caricature in the same magazine in December 1773 represents him as picking his father's pocket, in reference to his gambling debts (Wright).
On 6 Feb. 1772 Fox spoke against the clerical petition for relief from subscription to the articles, though he condemned the custom of requiring subscription from lads at the universities. He prepared himself for his defence of the church ‘by passing twenty-two hours in the pious exercise of hazard,’ losing during that time 11,000l. (Gibbon, Miscellaneous Works, ii. 74). A twelvemonth later he supported a motion for a committee on the subject of subscription, and further showed that, in spite of his zeal for privilege, he was not to be reckoned among those who were content to forward the king's wishes on all points, for he acted as teller for a bill for the relief of protestant dissenters; the king declared that ‘his conduct could not be attributed to conscience, but to his aversion to all restraints’ (Speeches, i. 17; George III, Letters to Lord North, i. 89: this letter, dated 1772, seems to belong to 1773; comp. Parl. Hist. xvii. 758). On 20 Feb. 1772 he resigned office. Although he had some private grounds of dissatisfaction with North (Memorials, i. 73; Last Journals, i. 23), the chief cause of his resignation was that he intended to oppose the Royal Marriage Bill. The circumstances of his parents' marriage rendered him jealous of all needless restrictions on marriage; he had already obtained leave to bring in a bill to amend the marriage act, and he chose to sacrifice office rather than assent to the restrictions that the king was bent on placing on the marriages of his house. North was terrified by the report of his intended resignation, and withdrew one of the most objectionable clauses of the bill. Fox joined Conway and Burke in opposing the bill, and was ‘universally allowed to have seized the just point of argument throughout with amazing rapidity and clearness’ (ib. p. 59). At least as early as 1766 he had become acquainted with Burke, and had learnt to respect his opinion (Memorials, i. 26), and this temporary co-operation with him can scarcely have been without some effect on his later career. Fox introduced his own marriage bill on 7 April, having that morning, after a night spent in drinking, returned from Newmarket, where he had lost heavily; he spoke with effect, but took no more trouble about the bill, which was thrown out at a later stage. In December he re-entered the administration as a junior lord of the treasury. Although Olive had been absolved by parliament, Fox took the opportunity of a debate on the affairs of India in June 1773 to attack him with unsparing vehemence. He recommenced his assaults on the press. In a debate he had raised on this subject on 16 Feb. 1774 he rebuked T. Townshend for coupling the name of Johnson with that of Shebbeare (Speeches, i. 25). Johnson never forgot his warm defence (Boswell, Life, iv. 315). Fox had lately been elected a member of the club; he was generally silent when Johnson was present (ib. 179). He was naturally shy, but when in the society of those with whom he felt at ease would ‘talk on for ever with all the openness and simplicity of a child’ (Rogers, Table-talk, p. 75); his conversation was always easy and full of anecdote. Office exercised no restraint upon him. He forced North against his will to persist in a proposal that the printer Woodfall should be committed to the Gatehouse for printing a letter containing charges against the speaker. The minister was defeated, and the king, who already disliked Fox for the part he had taken against the Royal Marriage Bill, and in support of the relief bill of the year before, was furious at his presumption. ‘That young man,’ he wrote, ‘has so thoroughly cast off every principle of common honour and honesty that he must soon become as temptible as he is odious' (George III, Letters to North, i. 170). North was reluctantly compelled to inform him on the 24th that the king had dismissed him from office. Meanwhile his money difficulties had come to a crisis. For four years he had played constantly and for high stakes, and his losses were very heavy. Although his horses were generally beaten on the turf, his bets were judicious, and in 1772 he won 16,000l. on a single race. Nor was he a loser in games that required skill, such as whist and picquet. He was ruined by his losses at hazard, and it seems tolerably certain that the 'immoderate, constant, and unparalleled advantages' jgained over him at the gaming-table were the result of unfair play (Memorials, i. 91). In order to pay his gambling debts he had recourse to Jewish money-lenders, and, always light-hearted, used to call the room where these men waited for him his 'Jerusalem chamber.' Friends, and especially Lord Carlisle, paid large annuities on his behalf. In the summer of 1773 his difficulties induced him to put faith in an adventuress who promised to procure him a wife with 80,OOOl. In that year the wife of his elder brother bore a son, and the money-lenders refused to give him further credit. 'My brother Ste's son,' he said, 'is a second Messiah, born for the destruction of the Jews' (Gibbon, Miscell. Works, ii. 132). He thought of reading for the bar, in the hope of retrieving his fortune by professional industry. Lord Hollland paid his debts in the winter of 1773-4, 'at a cost of 140,000l. He did not give up the habit of gambling (Last Journals, i. 7, 283 ; Wraxall, Memoirs, ii. 9 ; Early Life, pp. 478-92). In the course of 1774 Fox lost his father, mother, and elder brother. He received King's Gate, near Margate, from his father, and on his brother's death succeeded to the Irish clerkship of the pells, which was worth 2,000l. a year for life ; he shortly afterwards sold both the house and the clerkship (Wraxall, Memoirs, ii. 8).
At the time of Fox's dismissal the dispute with the American colonies had reached a critical stage ; the tea riot in Boston took place in December 1773, and Gage landed in May 1774 to put in force the Boston Port Bill. Fox now began to act with the Rockingham party ; he carried on a constant opposition to the war, and his speeches, hitherto occasional and for the most part misdirected, were during this period the most effective expositions of the policy of the Rockingham whigs. His jealousy for the rights of parliament, hitherto exhibited in unworthy measures against the liberty of the press, now took a nobler turn, and on 24 March he declared that the quarrel with Massachusetts was with the parliament not with the crown, and that it therefore belonged to parliament to decide on the restoration of the port of Boston (Speeches, i. 27). On 19 April he voted for the repeal of the tea duty, declaring that the tax was a mere assertion of a right which would force the colonists 'into open rebellion' (ib. p. 28). It is said that in December an attempt was made to negotiate between Fox and North, but that Fox's demands were too high (Last Journals, i. 437). Fox upheld Burke, on 23 Jan. 1775, in complaining of the disregard shown to the merchants' petition, and pointed out that Gage's troops were in a ridiculous position. He made a violent attack on North on the 27th, and when the minister complained that Fox and Burke were threatening him, declared that he would join Burke in bringing him to answer for his conduct. In moving an amendment to a ministerial address on 2 Feb. 'he entered into the whole history and argument of the dispute, and made the greatest figure he had yet done in a speech of an hour and twenty minutes' (ib. p. 455) ; 'taking the vast compass of the question' he 'discovered power for regular debate which neither his friends hoped, nor his enemies dreaded' (Gibbon, Miscell. Works, ii. 132). On the 20th he exposed the hollowness of North's plan of conciliation, as, according to his ideas, 'carrying two faces on its very first appearance' (Speeches, i. 37). The affair at Lexington took place in April. When parliament met on 26 Oct. Fox supported the amendment to the address, censuring the ministers for increasing the discontent in America. The ministers, he said, 'have reason to triumph. Lord Chatham, the king of Prussia, nay, Alexander the Great never gained more in one campaign than thd noble lord has lost — he has lost a whole continent.' The colonists, he admitted, had gone too far, though he denied that they were aiming at independence, they were aiming at freedom, and he urged that they should be placed in the same position as in 1763 (ib. i. 49). On 20 Feb. 1776 he moved for a committee on the war, contending that the ministers lacked wisdom and integrity, parliament public spirit, and the commanders either military skill or liberty to carry out what they were sent to do. The motion was lost by 240 to 104. Speaking in support of the amendment to the address on 31 Oct. he denied that it was 'not for the interest of Spain and France to have America independent;' injury to the trade of this free country must be advantageous to old corrupted governments. If, however, the question lay between conquering and abandoning America, he was for abandoning it ; for our advantages from America arose from trade and from relationships with a people of the same ideas and sentiments. They would be cut off by war ; while the army in America would oppress the people there, and would be dangerous to liberty at home (ib. p. 61). Fox was at this time the animating spirit of the Rockingham party, though he had not as yet avowedly joined it ; he brought recruits to it, declared himself 'far from being dismayed by the terrible news from Long Island,' urged perseverance, and tried to dissuade the marquis from secession (Memoirs of Rockingham, ii. 297). The king recognised his power ; for he wrote to North, saying that he heard that Fox was about to leave for Paris on 16 Nov., and that the minister would do well to press on business in his absence (Letters to North, ii. 40). While, however, Fox, according to Gibbon, 'in the conduct of a party' thus 'approved himself equal to the conduct of an empire' (Miscell. Works, i. 222), he did not abandon his gaming or rakish life, and was seldom in bed before 5 a.m.,, or up before 2 p.m. (Last Journals, ii. 4). He went to Paris with Fitzpatrick, played high there, and returned to England about the middle of January 1777 (Mme. du Deffand, iii. 207, 218).
When the Rockingham party seceded from parliament, Fox still continued to attend, and on 10 Feb. opposed the suspension of the Habeas Corpus Act. In the summer he made a tour in Ireland with Lord John Townshend, met Grattan at Lord Charlemont's, and formed a friendship with him, and was much fêted at Dublin (Memorials, i. 156). While in Ireland he received a letter from Burke, exhorting him to lay his 'foundations deep in public opinion,' and expressing the writer's wish that he would avowedly join the Rockingham party (Burke, Works, ix. 148). On the meeting of parliament in November he delivered a 'bitter philippic on Lord George Germaine,' describing him as 'that inauspicious and ill-omened character, whose arrogance and presumption, whose ignorance and inability,' had damaged the country. 'Charles,' Lord North said, for in spite of political differences they were on friendly terms, 'I am glad you did not fall on me to-day, for you was in full feather' (Memorials, i. 159). When Germaine confirmed the news of the disaster at Saratoga, Fox renewed his attack with great vehemence, and expressed his hope of seeing Germaine 'brought to a second trial' (Last Journals, ii. 170). In moving for papers with reference to the surrender at Saratoga, Fox, in January 1778, compared the reign to that of James II. Luttrell said that he was talking treason, which he denied. The 'Morning Post,' the paper of the court party, taunted him with not challenging Luttrell. Its tone gave rise to a suspicion that there was a scheme to get rid of Fox by provoking a duel. Luttrell complained of the tone of the paper, said he had been misrepresented, and threatened to have the gallery cleared. Fox, so greatly had he changed his ground as regards press matters, asserted that the 'public had a right to know what passed in parliament' (Speeches, i. 101). On 2 Feb. he made a motion on the state of the nation, and reviewed the whole conduct of the ministers in a speech of two hours and forty minutes. His speech was not answered, and the motion was rejected by 259 to 165, which was considered a very good division for the opposition (ib. pp. 102-11). The treaty between France and the revolted colonies was signed 6 Feb., and on the 17th Fox, while in the main approving North's new scheme for conciliation, asked 'what punishment would be sufficient for those who adjourned parliament in order to make a proposition of concession, and then had neglected to do it until France had concluded a treaty with the independent states of America' (ib. p. 117). Negotiations were opened in March to induce Fox to join the administration. Fox is reported to have said 'that except with Lord G. Germaine he could act with the present ministers; but he disavowed every possibility of accepting singly and alone.' This report has been discredited (Memorials, i. 181, note by Lord Russell). He had not yet made 'engagements to any set of men,' but felt bound in honour to the Rockingham party (ib. p. 170). As, however, he seems on 31 May to have thought that a 'compromise ought to be made' (Memoirs of Rockingham, ii. 354), the report does not seem incredible. Fox evidently thought it possible that the king would sanction a change of policy, and a considerable change in the administration ; while the king only contemplated reinforcing the existing administration by the admission of two or three men of ability (Lewis, Administrations, p. 14 ; Stanhope, History, vi. 222-6). Soon after this Fox definitely attached himself to the Rockingham party. He still thought a coalition possible, and on 24 Jan. 1779 urged it on Rockingham as an opportunity of restoring the whig party to power. His uncle, the Duke of Richmond, pointed out his mistake, insisted that the negotiations then afoot meant simply 'an offer of places without power,' and exhorted him to be patient and steadfast (Memoirs of Rockingham, ii. 371 ; Memorials, i. 213). He followed this advice. Meanwhile he had not abated the vehemence of his opposition. In the debate on the address in November 1778 he criticised the naval arrangements, and advocated the withdrawal of troops from America and the prosecution of the war against France. ‘America,’ he said, ‘must be conquered in France; France can never be conquered in America,’ and he declared that the war of the Americans was a ‘war of passion,’ the war of France a ‘war of interest’ (Speeches, i. 131–8). After Christmas he attacked the admiralty, which was wretchedly mismanaged by Lord Sandwich, and on 3 March moved a vote of censure on the ground that when Keppel had been sent to prevent a junction of two French squadrons the previous June he had only twenty ships, though there were twenty-seven ships of the line in the Brest waters, and five more nearly ready for sea. The motion was lost by 204 to 170, an unusually large minority (ib. pp. 140–60). He warmly espoused the cause of Keppel against Palliser and Sandwich with reference to the engagement off Ushant. When the news of Keppel's acquittal reached London at 3 A.M. on 11 Feb., he and some of his friends were drinking at Almack's; they sallied out into the streets, and one of the party is said to have incited the mob to break Lord G. Germaine's windows (Last Journals, ii. 343).
By this time it had become abundantly evident that the king's determination to carry on the war was at the bottom of the resistance offered by North and the majority of the commons to the policy of the opposition. Accordingly, on 25 Nov., at the opening of the session, Fox referred to the unconstitutional character of the doctrine that the king might be his own minister, spoke of the punishments that befell Charles I and James II, and compared the king and his reign to Henry VI and the period of his losses in France. He also made a violent attack on Adam. This led to a duel on the 29th, in which Fox was slightly wounded [see under Adam, William]. He was now the ‘idol of the people.’ On 2 Feb. 1780 he took the chair at a great meeting in Westminster Hall, where a petition was adopted praying the commons to reform abuses in the public expenditure. At this meeting he was received as candidate for the city of Westminster at the approaching election. At another meeting of the same sort on 5 April he declared for yearly parliaments and an additional hundred knights of the shire, and when a motion was brought forward on 8 May for triennial parliaments upheld it on the ground that it would lessen the influence of the crown, to which he traced all the misfortunes of the country (Speeches, i. 276). He took a prominent part in the debates on economical reform [see under Burke, Edmund]; on 8 March combated Rigby's theory that the house was not competent to disturb the existing arrangement with the crown, declaring that if this was so there ‘was an end of the constitution,’ and he would never enter the house again, and insisting that the only way to narrow influence was by the reduction of the civil list (ib. p. 224). During the Gordon riots in the first week of June Fox joined a party of young men who kept guard over the Marquis of Rockingham's house in Grosvenor Square, and on the 20th made a fine speech of three hours in favour of relief of the Roman catholics, declaring himself a ‘friend to universal toleration.’ In July fresh negotiations were set on foot between North and the leaders of the opposition. Rockingham proposed that Fox should be ‘considered.’ The king objected to Fox on the ground that he advocated shortening the duration of parliaments, but added, ‘As to Mr. Fox, if any lucrative, not ministerial, office can be pointed out for him, provided he will support the ministry, I shall have no objection. He never had any principle, and can therefore act as his interest may guide him’ (Memorials, i. 252). The negotiations failed. While the king's opinion of Fox was harsh, some of the circumstances of his early career, his insubordination in office, and his rapid change from toryism to ‘virulent and unqualified opposition to his former chief,’ even though he had never defended the quarrel with the American colonies, and though American questions had not become urgent until the time of his secession, certainly gave his enemies some excuse for speaking ill of him, while his dissipated life deprived him of the weight that attaches to character (Lecky, History, iii. 528). This was the period of his greatest pecuniary embarrassments. In January 1779 he is said to have jestingly asked for a place on the council for India as a means of gaining a livelihood (Life of Sir P. Francis, ii. 172). Two years later he won 70,000l., at least so it is said, in partnership with others at hazard, lost it all at Newmarket, and was 30,000l. ‘worse than nothing’ (Auckland Correspondence, i. 320). Although he was then lodging in St. James's Street, near the gambling club, where he spent nearly all his spare time, he was often in need of the smallest sums, and on 20 June 1781 his books were sold under a writ of execution (Memorials, i. 265). He bore his losses with great equanimity. Immediately after a run of ill-luck that left him penniless he was found quietly reading Herodotus; at other times he would at once fall sound asleep. By 1781 his dissipation is said to have brought on internal pains, but he used each year to lay in a fresh store of health by spending some weeks in shooting in Norfolk (Wraxall, Memoirs, ii. 15, 23; Walpole, Letters, viii. 41; but as regards Fox's health compare Memorials, i. 264 n.) His embarrassments rendered his faithfulness to his party especially praiseworthy; his opposition to the American war was sincere, and the emoluments of office could not tempt him to be false to his principles.
In October 1780 Rodney and Fox were returned for Westminster, the ministerial candidate being defeated by a large majority. During the canvass the whig electors adopted a resolution to defend Fox's safety, as he would probably be made the ‘object of such attacks as he had already experienced, and to which every unprincipled partisan of power is invited by the certainty of a reward.’ Fox at this time adopted the blue frock-coat and buff waistcoat which are said to have given the whigs their party colours, still commemorated on the cover of the ‘Edinburgh Review’ (Wraxall, Memoirs, ii. 27; the connection is doubtful, and rests on Wraxall's assertion, which, however, is perhaps corroborated by the phrase ‘our buff and blue chief,’ Auckland Correspondence, ii. 369). The appointment of Palliser as governor of Greenwich Hospital provoked Fox to renew his attacks upon him, and on 1 Feb. he spoke severely of the exercise of the royal influence in driving Keppel from the borough of Windsor. This greatly annoyed the king (Speeches, i. 295; Letters to North, ii. 357). On 7 March he attacked North on finance, pointing out that the minister's proposal to raise twelve millions by annuities and 480,000l. by lottery showed utter disregard of the public interest, and that the profit on the loan would be 900,000l., which North would have the power of distributing among his supporters, and which would thus become a means of maintaining a majority; the lottery scheme he considered as injurious to the morals of the people. When pursuing this subject on 30 May he made a violent attack on North, personating the minister at his levee as inducing members to vote for the continuance of the war by representing that he had 900,000l. to distribute (Speeches, i. 316, 364; Wraxall, Memoirs, i. 98). On 15 June he carried the commitment of a bill to amend the marriage act, making a speech of remarkable power, in which he compared the results of lawful and unlawful union (Speeches, i. 413). When parliament met on 27 Nov. news had been received of the surrender of Yorktown. Fox moved an amendment to the address, and, angered by a remark that the house had heard with impatience the narratives of the American disasters, declared that the ministers ‘must by the aroused indignation and vengeance of an injured and undone people hear of them at the tribunal of justice and expiate them on the public scaffold;’ he exposed the wretched condition of the navy, and appealed to the house not to go on with the war. His amendment was lost by 218 to 129 (ib. pp. 427, 436). During January and February 1782 he continued his attacks on the maladministration of the navy, and the majority rapidly decreased. On 8 March Adam taunted him with looking outside the house for the wishes of the people, especially as regards the duration of parliaments. In reply Fox made a sort of confession of the principles he would follow if the ministry was overthrown; he spoke of the corrupt state of the house, and declared that it ought to be made to represent the people, but that it would be of little use to shorten parliaments unless the influence of the crown was abated; he desired an administration formed on the broadest basis (ib. ii. 40; Parl. Hist. xxii. 1136; Wraxall, Memoirs, ii. 222). North resigned on the 20th.
On the 25th Fox took office as foreign secretary in Lord Rockingham's administration. His appointment was immensely popular (he appears in the caricature ‘The Captive Prince’ as the ruler of the mob). As minister he was ‘indefatigable,’ and for the time wholly gave up play (Walpole, Letters, viii. 217; Memorials, i. 320 n.) He was not satisfied with the composition of the ministry; it consisted, he said, ‘of two parts, one belonging to the king, the other to the public;’ the king's part was led by Shelburne, the other secretary, and it soon became evident that he and Fox regarded each other with the distrust and jealousy natural to men who are forced by circumstances to act together while they are rivals and enemies at heart, as well as with an intense personal dislike’ (ib. pp. 314, 316; Lecky, History, iv. 216). On 17 May Fox brought in the bill for the repeal of the declaratory act of George I and for other concessions to Ireland. He had already, on 6 Dec. 1779, expressed in parliament his approval of the Irish association, and of ‘the determination that in the dernier ressort flew to arms to obtain deliverance’ (Speeches, i. 221). He now said that he ‘would rather see Ireland totally separated from the crown of England than kept in obedience by mere force.’ In acceding to the four demands of the Irish he was anxious ‘to meet Ireland on her own terms,’ and contemplated a formal treaty which should regulate the relationship between the two kingdoms. Finally, he praised the moderation of the volunteers (ib. ii. 64). He supported Pitt's motion for parliamentary reform on the ground that it gave power to those who had a stake in the country (ib. p. 67). In his special department he desired to counterbalance the power of France by alliances with Russia and Prussia, and in order to satisfy Russia made offers to Holland on the basis of the ‘armed neutrality’ (Malmesbury, Diaries, i. 497–517; Memorials, iii. 300; Life, i. 299). The discord between the two secretaries increased (Grafton MSS., quoted Lecky, History, iv. 224), and came to a crisis about the negotiations for peace. Fox desired that the independence of America should be acknowledged unconditionally, and not as part of the joint treaty with America and France. Shelburne preferred to receive the acknowledgment for the joint treaty, and use it as a set-off to claims for territory. The treaty with France belonged to Fox's department, negotiations with the American colonies to Shelburne's. A merchant named Oswald was employed, first informally by Shelburne, and then by the cabinet, to negotiate with Franklin at Paris. Oswald was unfit for his work, and encouraged Franklin to expect large concessions, embodied in a paper which Shelburne concealed from Fox. On 23 May the cabinet came round to Fox's ideas, and authorised Grenville, Fox's envoy to Vergennes, ‘to propose the independency of America in the first instance’ (Memorials, i. 357). Fox contended that, as America was thus recognised as independent, negotiations belonged for the future to him as foreign minister, while Shelburne claimed them as secretary for the colonies (ib;;. p. 439). The king agreed with Shelburne, for he desired that Oswald might be a ‘check’ on Fox (Life of Shelburne, iii. 184). Fox was outvoted in the cabinet, and Oswald was sent back to Paris. When Oswald returned, Grenville, who had been negotiating with Franklin, found that Franklin became reserved; he complained to Fox and told him of the private paper, for Oswald informed him of it. Fox was indignant at Shelburne's duplicity, and demanded Oswald's recall. The majority of the cabinet, however, decided to grant him full powers. On 30 June Fox desired that the independence of America should be unconditionally acknowledged, which would have put the whole negotiations into his hands. Shelburne declared that the instructions of 23 May only indicated a recognition that might be withdrawn in case other negotiations failed; he was supported by the majority of the cabinet, and Fox announced his intention of resigning (ib. p. 218; Memorials, i. 434–9; Franklin, Works, ix. 335; Lewis, Administrations, pp. 31–50; Lecky, History, iv. 223–35, where this intricate subject is admirably elucidated).
Fox's resignation was delayed, for Rockingham was on his deathbed, and died the next day. Fox advised the king to send for one of the Rockingham party, and wished for the appointment of the Duke of Portland. The king preferred Shelburne, and Fox, Lord John Cavendish, ‘with Burke, Sheridan, and some others not in the cabinet, resigned.’ Fox's resignation broke up the Rockingham party. He has been much blamed for it (Memorials, i. 472); but the king knew that it would be impossible for him to work with Shelburne (Life of Shelburne, iii. 220), Burke advised him not to try it (Memorials, i. 457), and Elliot thought resignation necessary to his credit (Life of Sir G. Elliot, i. 80). He defended his resignation on the grounds that he felt general want of confidence, that Rockingham's ‘system’ had been abandoned, and that, while he maintained that the acknowledgment of American independence should be unconditional, Shelburne wished to make it the price of peace (Speeches, ii. 73, 97). Considering the differences between him and Shelburne on this subject, and, indeed, on other matters, and the fact that if he had remained in office he would always have been in a minority in the cabinet, his resignation appears justified. His loss of office was made the subject of three famous caricatures, one by James Sayer entitled ‘Paradise Lost,’ the other two by J. Gillray, who represents him in one as in the envious mood of Milton's Satan, and in the other, ‘Guy Vaux and Judas Iscariot,’ as wrangling with Shelburne (Wright). His party could now count on ninety votes, and he held the balance between the supporters of the minority and the party of North. A design was at once formed to bring about a coalition between Fox and North (Auckland Correspondence, i. 9, 28). Political sympathy dictated a union between the Foxites and the ministerial party; personal dislike prevented it. In February an attempt was made to induce Fox to come to terms with the Shelburne whigs. He refused to enter any administration of which Shelburne was the head. On the 17th his coalition with North became patent, and on the 21st the two combined parties defeated the ministry on a motion concerning the peace. The coalition with North forcibly illustrates Fox's levity and indiscretion; he defended it on the plea that quarrels should be short, friendships abiding; but his differences with North were not personal, they were matters of political principle. He declared that the cause of quarrel, the American war, had passed, and that there was therefore no reason why he should not act with North. But his late censures on North had not been confined to the minister's persistence in the war, he had attacked North's character as a statesman, had maintained that he was a bad and corrupt minister, and had threatened him with impeachment. Besides, North was, and remained, a tory, while Fox had embraced the principles of the Rockingham whigs. Fox himself declared that nothing could justify the junction but success; he hoped that it would lead to the establishment of a strong administration which would be able to resist the intrigues of the crown; the king was to be treated with respect, but was to have only the semblance of power, and there was to be no government by departments (Memorials, ii. 38, iv. 40, 102). The coalition ruined the whigs, disgusted the nation, and was overthrown by the king. George struggled hard against it; he hated Fox not merely for political reasons, but because he believed that he encouraged the Prince of Wales in evil courses, and in unfilial conduct (ib. i. 269). The prince was intimate with Fox, and upheld him as a politician, greatly to his father's annoyance. Although the king used every effort to exclude Fox from the administration (Courts and Cabinets, i. 169, 172, 213), he was beaten by the coalition, and on 2 April Fox took office as foreign secretary with North and under the headship of the Duke of Portland. He was re-elected for Westminster on the 7th without opposition, though amid some hissing.
The coalition was violently disapproved by the nation; it offended the democratic party equally with the court, and was held up to public ridicule both in print and in caricatures (e.g. by Sayer in the ‘Medal’ and the ‘Mask,’ in the ‘Drivers of the State-coach’ and ‘Razor's Levee,’ and by Gillray in his double picture, ‘The Astonishing Coalition’). As minister Fox was respectful to the king, but he could get no more in return than bare civility, for George smarted under his defeat, and was determined to get rid of his new ministers. In foreign politics Fox tried to follow the line which has already been noticed in the account of his official work during the Rockingham administration; he describes the formation of ‘a continental alliance as a balance to the house of Bourbon’ as his guiding principle. He was thwarted by the indifference of the king and the unwillingness of Frederic of Prussia. In May he supported Pitt's resolutions for reform of parliament (Speeches, ii. 172), while North opposed them. By his persuasion the ministers pledged themselves to obtain a grant of 100,000l. a year for the prince. The king proposed 50,000l. a year to be taken from his own civil list. On 17 June it seemed likely that the matter would end in the dismissal of the ministers, but it was arranged by the prince himself. Fox acted in this affair rather as a friend to the prince than as a minister of the crown (Wraxall, Memoirs, iii. 111). With respect to Ireland he exhorted the lord-lieutenant, Lord Northington, ‘not to be swayed in the slightest degree by the armed volunteers' associations;’ he considered that the concessions of 1782 ‘closed the account,’ and would have nothing yielded to threats (Memorials, ii. 163). The condition of Indian finance, the abuses of the administration, and the conduct of the court of proprietors in retaining Warren Hastings as governor-general of Bengal rendered it necessary to reform the government of India, and on 18 Nov. Fox brought in a bill for that purpose; the conception and the particulars of the bill must be ascribed to Burke, but Fox made the measure his own and recommended it with uncommon power (Nicholls, Recollections, i. 55). Although he was conscious that by bringing in this India bill before the ministry was firmly established he was risking his power, he did not hesitate to incur that danger ‘when the happiness of so many millions was at stake’ (ib. p. 219). He exposed the deplorable condition of the company, defended the recall of Hastings, and, as illustrations of the bad government of which he was the principal agent, dwelt on the iniquities of the transactions with Cheyt Sing and the begums of Oude and the Rohilla war. In order to remedy abuses he proposed to constitute a supreme council in England, consisting of seven commissioners, to be named by the legislature, who should hold office for four years and have complete control over government, patronage, and commerce. At the end of their period of office the right of nomination was to vest in the crown. A board of assistant-directors chosen from the largest proprietors was to manage commercial details; these assistants were to be appointed in the first instance for four years by parliament, and vacancies were to be filled up by the proprietors. Provision was made in a second bill for giving security to landowners and for certain other matters (Speeches, ii. 194). The first bill was carried in the commons, but the opposition raised a strong feeling against it by representing that it struck at chartered rights and at royal prerogative. All public companies were said to be endangered; the bill was declared to provide opportunities for corruption, and, above all, the tories represented that it gave the whig majority in the commons the virtual sovereignty of India. Fox was said to be attempting to make himself ‘king of Bengal,’ and Sayer's fine caricature, ‘Carlo Khan's Triumphal Entry into Leadenhall Street,’ gave, so he declared, the severest blow to his bill in the public estimation (Wright). The king was easily induced to believe that his prerogative was attacked. As the right of nomination only belonged to the parliament for four years, and the nominees were liable to be removed by the king on address by either house of parliament, the declaration that the bill was an attempt to deprive the sovereign of his rights was certainly exaggerated and was due to party considerations. The king used his personal influence through Lord Temple to secure the rejection of the bill and the defeat of his ministers in the House of Lords on 17 Dec., and the next day Fox and his colleagues were dismissed.
Fox's large majority in the commons made it probable that the king would dissolve the house in order to gain a majority in favour of the new ministry which was formed by Pitt. Fox determined to prevent a dissolution and an appeal to the nation, and was confident that he should be able to force the king to recall the late ministry. The king could not dissolve until the Land Tax Bill had been passed, and the house deferred the third reading and presented an address against dissolution. On 12 Jan. 1784 Fox moved for a committee on the state of the nation, endeavouring to make a dissolution impossible, and declaring that ‘it would render gentlemen in some degree accomplices in the guilt of a dissolution without cause, if they suffered the land bill to go out of their hands without taking measures to guard against the evils which might be expected from a dissolution’ (Speeches, ii. 305). The motion was carried by a majority of thirty-nine. On the 23rd he spoke against, and procured the rejection of, Pitt's East India Bill. He endeavoured to force Pitt to resign by a series of votes of censure and addresses to the crown, and took his stand on the principle that a minister who persisted in retaining office against the wishes of a majority in the commons was guilty of contempt of the opinion of the house. In this long attack on the ministry he committed some grave mistakes; he attempted to restrain the crown from exercising its undoubted right, and he showed that he was unwilling to submit his cause to the judgment of the country. As a matter of tactics he foolishly gave Pitt time to gain a hold upon the constituencies, and he showed a want of political knowledge in staking his success on the stability of his majority in the house. On the 20th the section styled the ‘country gentlemen’ called for a coalition, and the attempt was renewed on 2 Feb. Fox, while professing that he was not averse to the idea, declared that a junction was impossible, as it could not be founded on principle (ib. p. 353). The king and Pitt remained firm, but Fox's majority gradually dwindled. On 20 Feb. an address to the crown was carried by twenty-one; on 1 March Fox moved another address and had a majority of twelve, this sank to nine on a motion to delay the Mutiny Bill on the 5th, and on the 8th a representation on public affairs was only carried by 191 to 190. On the 10th the Mutiny Bill was passed without a division, and on the 25th parliament was dissolved. Thus ended the struggle in which Dr. Johnson said ‘Fox divided the kingdom with Cæsar; so that it was a doubt whether the nation should be ruled by the sceptre of George III or the tongue of Fox’ (Boswell, Life of Johnson, iv. 315). Fox's defeat was caricatured by Sayer in the ‘Fall of Phaeton’ (Wright).
His popularity had been ruined by the coalition, the India bill, and his attempt to prevent an appeal to the country, and in the general election upwards of 160 members lost their seats, almost all of whom were ‘friends of the late administration’ (Annual Register, 1784–5, xxv. 147). Fox was opposed at Westminster by Sir Cecil Wray. The poll was opened on 1 April and closed on 17 May, when the numbers were—Lord Hood, 6,694; Fox, 6,234; Wray, 5,998. During the whole period the city was a scene of riot. By far the most efficient canvasser for Fox was Georgina, duchess of Devonshire, who was aided by other whig ladies, and was shamefully libelled in the ‘Morning Post’ and ‘Advertiser.’ He also received much help from the songs of Captain Morris. No other occasion probably has called forth such a profusion of lampoons and caricatures (Wright, Caricature History, p. 387; for squibs and history of the election see under authorities. The most noteworthy caricatures are on Fox's side those attributed to Rowlandson to be found in the ‘History of the Election’ and elsewhere, the ‘Champion of the People,’ the ‘State Auction,’ and the ‘Hanoverian Horse and the British Lion,’ and against him Gillray's ‘Returning from Brooks's’). At the close of the poll the high bailiff granted Wray a scrutiny, and on the meeting of parliament the next day simply reported the numbers, making no return to the writ on pretence of not having finished the scrutiny (Annual Register, xxv. 279). Fox, however, was enabled to take his seat, as he was returned for Kirkwall. On 8 June he spoke on the subject of the scrutiny, arguing that by Grenville's act such questions should not be decided by votes of the house, and that the bailiff had acted on insufficient evidence and had no right to grant a scrutiny to be continued after the writ became returnable (Speeches, ii. 451). A struggle on this matter was kept up during two sessions. At last it became evident that there was no chance of unseating Fox, and on 3 March 1785 the high bailiff was ordered to make his return, and Hood and Fox were declared duly elected. All the expenses of the election were paid by Fox's political friends. He was in great difficulties; all his effects were seized, and he was forced to leave his lodgings in St. James's. Shortly before this time he had formed a connection with Elizabeth Bridget Cane, otherwise Armistead or Armstead, a woman of good manners and some education, who is said to have begun life as waiting-woman to Mrs. Abington [q. v.] (Early Life of Samuel Rogers, p. 264). She took him to St. Anne's Hill, a house beautifully situated, with about thirty acres of land, near Chertsey in Surrey. Mrs. Armistead, to give her the title invariably used by Fox, appears to have bought this property about 1778 (Brayley, History of Surrey, ii. 238). There Fox indulged his tastes for gardening and literature, and thoroughly enjoyed a country life in company with a woman to whom he was sincerely attached, and who devoted herself to promoting his happiness. For some years he stayed in London during the sessions of parliament, and actively though vainly led the opposition. When Pitt brought forward his resolutions regulating the conditions of commerce between Great Britain and Ireland, he condemned them on the grounds that they would injure the mercantile interests of England, and would place Ireland in a position of dependence by imposing uncertain restraints ‘at the arbitrary demand of another state’ (Speeches, iii. 57 sq.). As one of the champions of English commercial interests he received a warm welcome at Manchester in September; this greatly pleased him, for he loved popularity (Memorials, ii. 270). In the previous April he expressed his approval of the principle of Pitt's motion for parliamentary reform, but objected to the proposal for buying up the borough seats, contending that the franchise was not a property but a trust. The attack on Hastings was begun the next year, and in May appeared Gillray's caricature, ‘Political banditti assaulting the Saviour of India,’ in which Fox appears attacking Hastings with a dagger. On 2 June Fox made an effective reply to Grenville's defence of Hastings against the charges brought against him by Burke with reference to the Rohilla war, and on the 13th laid before the committee the Benares charge, accusing Hastings of plundering Cheyt Sing, of causing the women taken at Bidgigur to be ill-treated, and of acting tyrannically at Benares; he concluded with a motion of impeachment. Pitt unexpectedly declared that he would vote for the motion, which was carried. Early in 1787 he took part in the debate on the Oude charge. He served on the committee appointed to draw up articles of impeachment, was one of the managers, and urged that Francis should be added to the number. During the progress of the trial, in 1788, he argued on the course of proceedings, opened the first part of the Benares charge in a speech which lasted five hours, and on 23 Dec. 1789 spoke with much force against the abatement of the impeachment by reason of the dissolution of parliament (Speeches, iv. 126).
In February 1787 Fox assailed the commercial treaty with France, though it certainly promised to be of great advantage to England. His opposition was based on political grounds. France, he said, was ‘the natural political enemy of Great Britain;’ she was endeavouring to draw England into ‘her scale of the balance of power,’ and to prevent it from forming alliances with other states. He advocated the claims of the dissenters to be exempt from disabilities on the score of religion, as he had advocated the cause of the Roman catholics seven years before. On 28 March he supported a motion for the repeal of the Test and Corporation Acts, and when the motion was renewed, on 1 May 1789, expressed his conviction that every country ought to have an established church, and that that church ought to be the church of the majority. He did not think it probable that the church of England would lose that position, but if the majority of the people should ever be for its abolition ‘in such a case the abolition ought immediately to follow.’ On 2 March following he moved the repeal himself. But the French revolution, and the writings of Priestley and Price, had convinced the house that it was possible that the church might be overthrown in England as it had been overthrown in France; Burke opposed his motion, and it was lost by nearly three to one (ib. iii. 315, iv. 1, 55). During 1785 the Prince of Wales often visited St. Anne's Hill in order to rave to Fox and his mistress about his passion for Mrs. Fitzherbert. In the December of that year Fox, believing that he contemplated marrying that lady, wrote him an able letter pointing out the serious dangers that would arise from such a step. The prince replied that the world would soon see that there never existed any grounds for the reports to which Fox referred, and ten days later, without Fox's knowledge, married Mrs. Fitzherbert privately. On 20 April 1787 a reference was made in a debate to the alleged marriage, and Fox took an early opportunity of denying the report in the strongest terms, adding that he did so ‘from direct authority.’ His truthfulness is beyond question. A few days later he found out the deceit that had been practised upon him, and for about a year avoided meeting the prince (Parl. Hist. xxvi. 1064, 1070; Memoirs of the Whig Party, ii. 120–42; Life of Mrs. Fitzherbert, i. 28 sq.; Life, ii. 177 sq.; Memorials, ii. 289 n.) In August Fox had some hope of being enabled, by his friends' help, to extricate himself from his money difficulties, and wrote to Fitzpatrick that Coutts was willing to lend him 6,000l. (Memorials, ii. 290). He was deeply impressed with the evils of the slave trade, and when Pitt brought forward a resolution on the subject in May 1788, declared that the trade should not be regulated but destroyed (Speeches, iii. 388). He often urged the abolition of the trade in later years.
In the summer Fox and Mrs. Armistead went abroad. Gibbon, with whom he spent two days at Lausanne in September, writes that ‘his powers were blended with the softness and simplicity of a child’ (Miscell. i. 252, 253, 282). It was rumoured in England at this time that he was about to marry Miss Pulteney, afterwards created Baroness Bath, who married Sir James Murray, and who was in Italy while Fox was there (Auckland Correspondence, ii. 212). Fox stayed in Italy longer than he intended, for Mrs. Armistead sprained her ankle (Life of Sir G. Elliot, i. 225). During his whole tour he never opened a newspaper except once to see how his bets had been decided at Newmarket, and as he had left no address had no news from England (ib. p. 236). In November a messenger from the Duke of Portland found him at Bologna. His party were anxious for his presence, for the king had become insane. After travelling incessantly night and day for nine days he arrived in London on the 24th, suffering in health from his hurried journey (ib. p. 240). It at once became evident that the prince, if constituted regent, would dismiss his father's ministers and ‘form a Foxite administration’ (Lewis). Whatever anger Fox may have felt at the deceit the prince had practised on him, he put it aside and entered into close relations with him, but found to his annoyance that during his absence Sheridan had become prime favourite (Auckland Correspondence, ii. 267, 279). Although the prince was distrusted and disliked, and the change of ministers would have been extremely unpopular, Fox, in spite of his whig theories, determined to assert his right to the regency as independent of the will of parliament, and when on 10 Dec. Pitt proposed a committee to search for precedents, on the principle that the appointment of a regent was within the right of parliament, he opposed the motion, declaring that ‘the Prince of Wales had as clear, as express a right to assume the reins of government’ as in the case of the king's ‘natural and perfect demise’ (Speeches, iii. 401). As Pitt listened to this speech he slapped his thigh and said to a friend: ‘I'll unwhig the gentleman for the rest of his life’ (Life of Sheridan, ii. 38). He made the most of the difference between them. Fox explained that he did not intend to annul the authority of parliament, but held that the royal authority belonged to the prince from the moment of the king's incapacity. Constitutionally, his contention was that as a limited hereditary monarchy had been established as the form of government best suited to the wants of the nation, it would be dangerous to disturb that settlement by vesting the executive in a regent elected by the two houses; and that as parliament had no legislative power apart from the sanction of the crown, it was not competent to elect a regent or impose restrictions on the exercise of the royal power (Lecky, History, v. 103–20), for the question really at issue was not a matter of abstract right, but concerned the imposition of restrictions (Lewis). Whatever may be thought of his reasoning, there can be no doubt as to his indiscretion. The ministerial party rejoiced greatly over his errors (Courts and Cabinets, ii. 49–54). On the 15th he believed that he and his party would be in power ‘in about a fortnight’ (Memorials, ii. 299). But after much debating Pitt's resolutions were agreed to. During the latter part of the discussions Fox was seriously unwell, and was forced to be at Bath to recruit his health (Auckland Correspondence, ii. 261, 267). On 21 Jan. 1789 he made out a list of the intended administration, placing the Duke of Portland at the head, and taking for himself the foreign department and the chairmanship of the India board (Memorials, iv. 284), and on 17 Feb. wrote of the regency as about to commence at once, for the bill had been car ried in the commons four days before. Two days later the king was pronounced convalescent.
After hearing of the taking of the Bastille, Fox wrote to Fitzpatrick on 30 July 1789: ‘How much the greatest event it is that ever happened in the world! and how much the best!’ and bade him tell the Duke of Orleans that, if the revolution had the consequences he expected, his dislike of French connections for this country would be at an end (ib. ii. 361). During the succeeding period he advocated the revolutionary cause in the same spirit of vehement partisanship that he had exhibited during the American war; indeed ‘there was no end to his indiscretions’ (Auckland Correspondence, ii. 387). When opposing the army estimates on 5 Feb. following, he praised the French army for taking part against the crown, and for showing that ‘in becoming soldiers they did not cease to be citizens.’ In replying to Burke on the 9th he protested that he was no friend to democracy; he upheld a mixed form of government, but he applauded the French soldiers for disobeying their leaders and joining the people in a struggle for liberty, and, while he deplored bloodshed, considered that the severe tyranny of the old régime should cause the excesses of the revolutionists to be regarded with compassion [see under Burke, Edmund]. He opposed the foreign policy of Pitt during the war between Russia and the Porte, arguing in March 1791 that the Turks were in fault, and were, he suspected, set on by Great Britain, that Catherine's terms were moderate, and that it was mistaken to strive to compel her to restore Oczakoff and accept conditions of the status quo ante; for the advance of Russia in the south could never be prejudicial to English interests. The czarina affected a romantic attachment for Fox, and sent to England for his bust, in order to place it between the busts of Demosthenes and Cicero (Malmesbury Correspondence, i. 325 n.; Colchester, Diary, i. 18). His conduct as regards the visit of Sir Robert Adair [q. v.] to Russia was declared by Burke to have ‘frustrated the king's minister’ (Burke, Works, vii. 227). While Burke's accusation was untrue, Fox certainly appears to have treated foreign politics at this period mainly as an instrument of party. When Oczakoff was yielded to Russia by the treaty of Jassy (January 1792), he taunted Pitt in a sarcastic and witty speech for having lowered his tone. He opposed the Quebec Government Bill, objecting to the provisions for the duration of the Canadian parliaments, the reserves for the clergy, and the institution of an hereditary nobility to sit in the council. The references he made to French politics in the course of the debates on this subject widened the breach between him and Burke, and on 6 May their old friendship and their political alliance was finally broken by public declaration in the commons [see under Burke]. On the 20th Fox brought forward his Libel Bill, which was carried in the commons without opposition, and became law the next year. This act, which is declaratory, maintained the rights of juries, and secured to the subject a fair trial by his peers (May, Const. Hist. ii. 263). During the summer of 1792 some of the followers of Fox who disapproved of his sympathy with the revolution, and feared the total break-up of their party, engaged in a scheme with the Duke of Portland for a coalition with Pitt. Fox declared himself ‘a friend to coalition,’ and Pitt professed to be favourable to the idea. As, however, Fox objected to serve under Pitt, though it is possible that he might have been brought to do so, and as Pitt held that after Fox's declarations relative to the revolution it would be impossible for him to go ‘at once’ into the foreign department, the negotiations, which lasted about seven weeks, virtually ended by 30 July (Malmesbury, ii. 453–72; Life of Sir G. Elliot, ii. 43, 53). Fox found some excuse for the revolutionary outbreak of 10 Aug., but not a shadow for the massacre of September (Memorials, ii. 368, 371); he was indignant at the Duke of Brunswick's proclamation and the invasion of France, and declared that no ‘public event, not excepting Saratoga and Yorktown,’ had so pleased him as the retreat of the Germans (ib. p. 372). He was now rapidly losing the confidence of a large section of his party, who took the Duke of Portland as their head. In the course of the winter Portland, Lord Fitzwilliam, Windham, Sir G. Elliot, T. Grenville, and many others separated themselves from him and gave their support to Pitt. He felt their secession deeply. Nor was he in full sympathy with Grey and others who joined the Association of the Friends of the People, for he considered it an inopportune time for pressing parliamentary reform, and was indeed never especially eager in the cause (Malmesbury, ii. 482 sq.; Life of Elliot, ii. 82; Memorials, iii. 20, iv. 292). On 13 Dec. he moved an amendment to the address, mocking at the reason given in the king's speech for embodying the militia, which was declared to be rendered necessary by the spirit of disorder shown in acts of insurrection; instead of trying to suppress opinion it would, he said, be better to redress grievances. He was in a minority of 50 against 290; the larger number of his party had left him, and he was a ‘head forsaken and alone’ (Auckland Correspondence, ii. 498).
On 1 Feb. 1793 Fox opposed Pitt's address to the crown, pledging the house to resist the aggrandisement of France. The position that he took with regard to the war then imminent was that it was an unjustifiable attempt to interfere with the internal affairs of another nation, that the ministers were taking advantage of the opening of the Scheldt to press on the war, that they should have asked for reparation for the decree of 19 Nov., and that their demand that the French troops should be withdrawn from the Austrian Netherlands was insolent; in short that they were seizing on excesses to begin what would be a ‘war of opinion’ (Speeches, v. 16). After war was declared, he moved on the 18th a series of resolutions condemning the policy of the ministers, and was defeated by 44 to 270. His conduct brought him much unpopularity, and he was attacked by Gillray in some bitter caricatures; in 1791 he was represented in the ‘Hopes of the Party’ as beheading the king; he is learning to fire in ‘Patriots amusing themselves,’ 1792, and is in sans-culotte dress in a drawing of 1793. To Grey's motion for reform he gave on 7 May a general support, and in the course of his speech said some things that, considering the special needs of the time, were violent and unstatesmanlike (ib. p. 115). Some trials and sentences for sedition deeply moved his indignation. He was in a small minority in moving an amendment to the address recommending peace in January 1794. Before the opening of parliament the more important of his former allies formally signified their intention of supporting the ministers. He wrote to his nephew, Lord Holland, on 9 March that if he could have done it with honour he should best have liked to retire from politics altogether (Memorials, iii. 65). Pitt's plan of subsidising Prussia to prevent its threatened defection drew forth an able and sarcastic speech from him on 30 April (Speeches, v. 261), and a month later he made another attack on the policy of the ministers, both as regards the grounds of the war and the mode in which it was prosecuted (ib. p. 307). Although separated from his former allies, unpopular with a large part of the nation, and in a hopeless minority in parliament, Fox was cheerful and unsoured. There was nothing small in his nature, and he felt no envy; he understood the delight of literary leisure, and enjoyed it thoroughly as far he could get it. During this period his letters to his nephew, whom he loved as a son, and who was then abroad, are full of the pleasure he derived from the society of Mrs. Armistead, the fine weather, and the beauties of St. Anne's Hill, of the pictures that pleased him most in Italy, and of his reading. He would have Lord Holland take note in the Pitti of Titian's ‘Paul III, the finest portrait in the world.’ Titian's masterpiece he holds to be his ‘Peter Martyr’ at Venice, and he speaks of his delight in the pictures of Guercino at Cento, and so on. Besides reading the ‘Iliad’ and the ‘Odyssey,’ as he did constantly, he was studying Spanish literature. He was at last fairly at ease about money, for in 1793 his friends subscribed 70,000l. to pay his debts and buy him an annuity (Memorials, iii. 40; Life of P. Francis, ii. 443). On 28 Sept. 1795 he married his mistress at Wytton, Huntingdonshire, but kept the fact of his marriage secret until 1802 (Life, iii. 78; Brayley, History of Surrey, ii. 240). He continued his opposition to the war in 1795, and, regarding the Treason and Sedition Bills brought forward in November as a deathblow to the constitution, declared in the house that if such bills were vigorously enforced, he should advise the people ‘that their obedience was no longer a question of moral obligation and duty, but of precedence’ (Speeches, vi. 31). This remark was severely reprobated. In moving an address on the conduct of the war on 10 May 1796, he maintained that Austria and Prussia would not have moved in 1792 against the will of England, and that after the treaty of Pilnitz England should have taken a neutral position and become the moderator of peace; that the war had been conducted without any fixed aim, it was neither wholly for the restoration of the French monarchy nor wholly for English interests, and that it had caused the country to leave Poland to its fate. He was in a minority of 42 to 206. In May 1797 he censured the measures adopted to put an end to the mutiny at Spithead; his censure has been pronounced just (Russell), but it is impossible to agree with this opinion; indeed the line he took on this occasion, and his attack on the government the next month with reference to the mutiny at the Nore, seem to prove that he regarded the difficulties of the country mainly as opportunities for attempting to win a party triumph. To this year belongs Isaac Cruikshank's [q. v.] caricature of Fox as the ‘Watchman of the State.’ On 26 May he supported Grey's motion for reform, declaring himself in favour of household suffrage in boroughs (Speeches, vi. 339). On the close of the session he and several of his friends, without pledging themselves to a systematic secession, ceased to attend parliament.
For more than five years Fox seldom appeared in parliament. During this period he led a quiet and regular life, spending much of his time in reading. He carried on a correspondence (1796–1801) with the famous Greek scholar, Gilbert Wakefield, and his letters show that he not only loved classical literature, but took a deep interest in the niceties of scholarship. The masterpieces of the greatest Latin, Greek, French, Italian, and Spanish authors were his constant companions. The four finest compositions of the century were, he said, the ‘Isacco’ of Metastasio, Pope's ‘Eloisa,’ Voltaire's ‘Zaire,’ and Gray's ‘Elegy.’ Burnet he held to be a master of historical style; he delighted in Dryden's works, and thought of editing them; Milton's prose he could not endure, and he did not admire Wordsworth. He read Homer through every year, enjoying the ‘Odyssey’ more than the ‘Iliad,’ though admitting that it was not so fine a work. Euripides he preferred to Sophocles. ‘I should never finish,’ he wrote, ‘if I let myself go upon Euripides.’ The ‘Æneid’ he read over and over again, dwelling with special pleasure on the pathetic passages (Memorials, iii. passim; Table-talk of S. Rogers, pp. 89–93). He began his ‘History of the Revolution of 1688’ in 1797; he made very slow progress with it, writing, Sydney Smith said, ‘drop by drop.’ A dinner of the Whig Club was held at the Crown and Anchor tavern on 24 Jan. 1798 to celebrate his birthday. At this dinner the Duke of Norfolk gave as a toast ‘Our sovereign, the people,’ and was in consequence dismissed from his lord-lieutenancy. Fox repeated the toast at a dinner held early in May, and on the 9th his name was erased from the privy council (Life of Pitt, iii. 128; Malmesbury, iv. 303). He disliked the proposed Irish union, and thought that a scheme of federation would be preferable (19 Jan. 1799, Memorials, iii. 150, 295; Colchester, Diary, ii. 39); the ministerial proposal was, he declared, ‘an attempt to establish the principles as well as the practice of despotism’ (Life of Grattan, iv. 435), but ‘nothing would induce him to attend the union debates.’ In September 1799 he was severely injured in the hand by the bursting of a gun while he was out shooting. He was indignant at Lord Grenville's reply to the overtures in the First Consul's letter of 25 Dec., and in deference to the wishes of his friends attended the debate on it on 3 Feb. 1800. His speech, except at the end, is rather an indictment of the ministers for entering on the war than a condemnation of Grenville's letter (Speeches, vi. 420). He was indignant at the sentences passed on Lord Thanet and Wakefield; wrote bitterly of the ministers, declaring that, with them in office, invasion would mean slavery; condemned their Irish policy, disapproved of their proposal to compensate Irish borough-holders, and held that they were wrong in their pretensions as regards the right of searching neutral ships (Memorials, iii. 284, 292, 306, 326).
When Addington succeeded Pitt, in February 1801, Fox determined to test the feeling of the house by joining in the debate on Grey's motion on the state of the nation on 25 March. He spoke with much ability on the dispute with the northern powers, the ill-success of the war, and the rights of catholics, warmly vindicated the character of the Irish people, and made a sarcastic reference to the new chancellor of the exchequer (Speeches, vi. 423). The motion was rejected, and he declared that he should not attend again that session except to uphold Tooke's claim. The House of Commons, he thought, ‘had ceased, and would cease, to be a place of much importance.’ He approved of the peace of Amiens, and on 10 Oct., at a dinner at the Shakespeare tavern, exulted in the thought that the peace was glorious to France. ‘Ought not glory,’ he said, ‘to be the reward of such a glorious struggle?’ (Life of Pitt, iii. 357). On 3 Nov. he criticised the terms of the peace in parliament. He was re-elected for Westminster after a contest in July 1802, and on the 29th set out for a tour in the Netherlands, Holland, and France. While at Paris he had several interviews with Bonaparte. They did not raise his opinion of the First Consul, whom he pronounced to be a ‘young man considerably intoxicated with success’ (Trotter, Memoirs, p. 36; Las Cases, Journal de l'Empereur, iv. 171). Much of his time was spent in working at the archives, getting materials for his history. He paid a short visit to Lafayette, and returned to England on 17 Nov. On his return he expressed his conviction that Bonaparte wished for peace, and would do everything in his power to maintain it (Memorials, iii. 381, 384). Nevertheless, on 8 March 1803, he found himself forced to support a warlike address. On 24 May, after the declaration of war, he made a speech of three hours' duration in favour of an attempt to restore peace. This speech is universally praised. ‘It was calm, subtle, argumentative pleasantry’ (Memoirs of Horner, i. 221; Malmesbury, iv. 257; Life of Sidmouth, ii. 182). He condemned the retention of Malta, but blamed the conduct of France with respect to Switzerland and Holland. Piedmont, he declared, was a part of France; we had no right to complain of France there. In the matter of insults, as distinguished from injuries, he scorned the idea of checking the freedom of the press, or expelling refugees to please a foreign power. While he allowed that a check should be put on the designs of Bonaparte, he condemned the war as undertaken for British interests, for the retention of Malta (Speeches, vi. 485). For Addington he had an unmitigated contempt. Grenville, the leader of the ‘new opposition,’ wished a union between himself, Fox, and Pitt to turn Addington out, and, as Pitt held aloof, proposed in January 1804 that Fox, the leader of the old opposition, should join with him ‘for the purpose of removing the ministry, and forming one on the broadest possible basis’ (Memorials, iii. 449). Fox agreed, and resumed regular attendance in parliament. After the Easter recess Pitt, without pledging himself to Fox, let him know that in case of a change of ministers he would use earnest endeavours to induce the king to receive him and Grenville (Courts and Cabinets, iii. 349); Pitt entered into opposition, and on 30 April Addington was forced to resign.
Pitt submitted a plan of an administration to the king which included the principal men of both the oppositions, and in which Fox was proposed as foreign secretary. The king ‘positively proscribed Fox and no one else’ (Malmesbury, iv. 300), and wished it to be known that Fox was ‘excluded by his express command’ (Life of Sidmouth, ii. 288). Meanwhile Fox, who thought it not improbable that the king would take this course, informed both his own friends and the Grenvilles that he hoped that his exclusion would not prevent them from taking office. Both sections declined entering an administration from which he was shut out (Malmesbury, iv. 321). In the summer he went to Cheltenham for the benefit of his health. He had announced his marriage before going abroad in 1802, and his wife was now received at the houses at which he visited. Mrs. Fox had grown plain and fat, but her ‘manners were pleasing and gentlewomanlike.’ Fox read much to her, and never wearied of her society. He was extremely anxious that every one should do her honour, and it was said that considerations of this sort weighed too much with him. He enjoyed shopping with her; and Sir Gilbert Elliot marvelled to see them setting off together to buy cheap china, and notes that they were both very economical (Life of Elliot, 1805, iii. 361–2; Life of Sir P. Francis, ii. 352). On 13 May 1805 Fox made a remarkable speech in introducing a motion founded on the Roman catholic petition, but was defeated by 336 to 124 (Speeches, vi. 587). In July, and again in September, Pitt endeavoured to persuade the king to allow him to offer Fox office, but was unsuccessful [see under George III]. Fox's accession would have secured the adhesion of Lord Grenville. According to his own account he hoped that the scheme would be defeated, for he declared that he would not enter a cabinet of which Pitt was the head. If he was to take office the administration must be changed (Memorials, iv. 90–114). When Pitt lay dying, on 21 Jan. 1806, a political meeting was held at Fox's house, but Fox refused to proceed to business. He could not do so, he said, at such a time, adding ‘mentem mortalia tangunt’ (Life of Horner, i. 328). He opposed the motion for public honours to Pitt on the ground that he had not been an ‘excellent statesman,’ but agreed cheerfully to the payment of his debts.
On Pitt's death the king sent for Lord Grenville, who at once said that the first person he should consult on the formation of an administration would be Fox; the king readily assented (ib. p. 331). By the end of the month Fox took office as foreign secretary in Grenville's administration, called ‘All the Talents’ or the ‘Broad-bottomed,’ and was caricatured by Gillray in ‘Making Decent,’ and as a led bear, for he was supposed to be under Grenville's influence. His union with Grenville was not like his coalition with North; there was no difference of principle, for he now recognised the necessity of checking Bonaparte's aggressions, and he had no cause to think ill of his colleague. At the same time he gave way to his old partiality for coalition by bringing into the cabinet Sidmouth, whom he despised, and who was wholly opposed to his principles (Life of Sidmouth, ii. 412). Nor was he justified in the part he took in involving the chief criminal judge in party politics by giving cabinet office to Lord Ellenborough, the chief justice, a course which he defended by laying down the maxim that the cabinet is not a body recognised by the constitution (Parl. Debates, vi. 308; this maxim was ridiculed by Canning). He agreed to submit any plan for withdrawing the army from the control of the crown, through the commander-in-chief, to the king's approval (Life of Sidmouth, ii. 415), and, in deference to the king's known desire, abstained from attempting to forward the claims of the catholics, for which the state of the king's health is some excuse (ib. p. 435). George received him graciously, and was turned from his old dislike of him by his minister's respectful and conciliatory manners. On 20 Feb. Fox informed Talleyrand of the offer of a Frenchman to assassinate Napoleon. This led to a correspondence which gave some hope of a treaty between Great Britain and France. Negotiations were begun but failed. Fox was convinced that the French were ‘playing a false game;’ he ‘insisted that Russia should be made a party to the treaty,’ and was stedfastly resolved to do nothing that could alienate our allies (Life, iii. 371–7; Memorials, iv. 136). Towards the end of May Fox's health became much impaired, but, in spite of increasing weakness, he moved for the abolition of the slave trade on 10 June, declaring that after forty years of political life he should feel that he could retire with contentment if he carried his motion (Speeches, vi. 658). A few days later he was forced to give up attendance in parliament. At the end of June his friends suggested that he should accept a peerage. ‘I will not,’ he said, ‘close my politics in that foolish way, as so many have done before me’ (Memoirs of the Whig Party, i. 249). His disease was found to be dropsy. He was moved from London to the Duke of Devonshire's house at Chiswick, and hoped to go on to St. Anne's, but was unable to do so. During his illness he listened with pleasure to Virgil, Dryden, Johnson's ‘Lives of the Poets,’ and Crabbe's ‘Parish Register.’ He was ‘no believer in religion;’ to content Mrs. Fox he consented to have prayers read, but ‘paid little attention to the ceremony’ (Lord Holland's account of his death in Greville Memoirs, iv. 159, ed. 1888). He died peacefully in the evening of 13 Sept., in his fifty-eighth year, and was buried in Westminster Abbey, close by the grave of Pitt.
Although Fox's private character was deformed by indulgence in vicious pleasures, it was in the eyes of his contemporaries largely redeemed by the sweetness of his disposition, the buoyancy of his spirits, and the unselfishness of his conduct. As a politician he had liberal sentiments, and hated oppression and religious intolerance. He constantly opposed the influence of the crown, and, although he committed many mistakes, and had in George III an opponent of considerable knowledge of kingcraft and immense resources, the struggle between him and the king, as far as the two men were concerned, was after all a drawn game. While his change of politics in 1772–4, though coincident with private pique, must not, considering his age, be held as a proof of irritability, the coalition of 1783 shows that he failed to appreciate the importance of political principles and was ignorant of political science. An immediate access of numerical strength always seemed to him a sure means of attaining a strong and stable government. Although his speeches are full of common sense, he made serious mistakes on some critical occasions, such as were the struggle of 1783–4, and the dispute about the regency in 1788. The line that he took with reference to the war with France, his idea that the Treason and Sedition bills were destructive of the constitution, and his opinion in 1801 that the House of Commons would soon cease to be of any weight, are instances of his want of political insight. The violence of his language constantly stood in his way; in the earlier period of his career it gave him a character for levity; later on it made his coalition with North appear especially reprehensible, and in his latter years afforded fair cause for the bitterness of his opponents. The circumstances of his private life helped to weaken his position in public estimation. He twice brought his followers to the brink of ruin and utterly broke up the whig party. He constantly shocked the feelings of his countrymen, and ‘failed signally during a long public life in winning the confidence of the nation’ (Lecky, Hist. iii. 465 sq.) With the exception of the Libel Bill of 1792, the credit of which must be shared with others, he left comparatively little mark on the history of national progress. Great as his talents were in debate, he was deficient in statesmanship and in some of the qualities most essential to a good party leader. He occasionally wrote verses, and some lines of his are preserved in his memoirs (Life, iii. 191). His ‘History of the Early Part of the Reign of James II, with an Introductory Chapter,’ 4to, was published by Lord Holland in 1808. It ends with the death of the Duke of Monmouth. It is written in a cold, uninteresting style, and represents the chief aim of James to be the establishment of civil despotism rather than the overthrow of the church of England. The appendix contains the transcripts of Barillon's correspondence made during Fox's visit to Paris in 1802. Mrs. Fox continued to reside at St. Anne's Hill after her husband's death, and died there at the age of ninety-two on 8 July 1842 (Annual Register, pp. 84, 276). Fox had an illegitimate son, who was deaf and dumb, and died at the age of fifteen; he treated him with much affection (Table-talk of S. Rogers, p. 81).[Earl Russell's Memorials and Correspondence of C. J. Fox, 1853–7, full of information, but awkwardly arranged, and the same writer's Life and Times of C. J. Fox, 1859–66, valuable but dull and with strong whig leanings, cited as Life; Sir G. O. Trevelyan's Early History of C. J. Fox, 1880, interesting though discursive, with some new facts about Fox's gaming, ends at 1774; Fell's Memoirs of Public Life, 1808, poor and now useless; Trotter's Memoirs of the Later Years of C. J. Fox, 1811, by Fox's private secretary, the first-hand authority for many details of private life from 1802 to 1806, according to S. Rogers ‘inaccurate though pleasing,’ both epithets seem disputable; a spiteful criticism of Fox's character by Francis in Parkes and Merivale's Life of Sir P. Francis, 1867; Brougham's estimate in his Historical Sketches of Statesmen, I., Knight's Weekly, 1845, is worthy of attention; Lecky's Hist. of England in Eighteenth Cent. vols. iii–vi., 1882–7; Lewis's Administrations, 1864; May's Constitutional History, 1875; Speeches of C. J. Fox, 1815; Walpole's Memoirs of the Reign of Geo. III, 1859, Last Journals, 1859, and Letters, ed. Cunningham, 1880; Wraxall's Historical and Posthumous Memoirs, 1884; Lettres de la Marquise du Deffand, 1810; Letters of Junius, ed. Woodfall, 1878; Donne's Correspondence of Geo. III with Lord North, 1867; Boswell's Life of Johnson, 1807; Gibbon's Miscellaneous Works, ed. Lord Sheffield, 1814; Lord Albemarle's Memoirs of the Marquis of Rockingham, 1852; Duke of Buckingham's Courts and Cabinets of Geo. III, 1853; Fitzmaurice's Life of Shelburne, 1875; Franklin's Works, ed. Sparks, vol. ix. 1840; Nicholls's Recollections of the Reign of Geo. III, 1820. For the Westminster election of 1784: History of the Westminster Election, 1784; Book of the Wars of Westminster, 1784; Oriental Chronicles, 1785; Collection of Squibs in the British Museum, 1784. For caricatures of Fox: Wright's History of Caricature, 1865; and Caricature History of the Georges, 1868. Lord Holland's Memoirs of the Whig Party, 1852; Moore's Life of Sheridan, 1825; Lord Malmesbury's Diaries, 1844; Prior's Life of Burke, 1853; Grattan's Life of Grattan, 1836; Stanhope's Life of Pitt, 1862; Lord Auckland's Journal and Correspondence, 1862; Horner's Memoirs of F. Horner, 1853; Rose's Diaries, 1865; Pellew's Life of Lord Sidmouth, 1847; Lord Colchester's Diary and Correspondence, 1861; Lady Minto's Life of Sir G. Elliot, 1874; Maltby's Samuel Rogers's Table-talk, ed. Dyce, 1887; Clayden's Early Life of S. Rogers, 1887; Princess Liechtenstein's Holland House, 1874, contains, among other matters, notices of the portraits and statues of Fox.]