History Of Brighton And Environs - Online Book

From The Earliest Known Period To The Present Time.

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Wo know the faults of character belonging to George IV. have, of late years, been largely insisted on, and perhaps it is not possible to extenuate them in any great degree. It is, however, a mistake to suppose that because a man is a voluptuary and more remarkable for good manners than good morals, he therefore is a person wholly bad. A human being is a mixture of various and often apparently incongruous elements, one relieving and redeeming another, sometimes assuming a predominance, sometimes the reverse, very much as the accidental pro­vocations of external circumstances may determine. It was so with this Monarch, as with the humblest of his subjects. In his lifetime one often heard both of pleasant things said and of amiable things done by the King. His restoration of the forfeited Scotch Peerage in 1824 was a piece of pure generosity towards men who were suffering through no faults of their own. When that measure was determined on, the representative of a forfeited Baronetcy of 1715 applied for a like extension of the royal grace. Though equally suitable, from the fact of the family having purchased back their ancestral lands, it was refused by the Ministers: but the King, on hearing of it, insisted on the applicant being gratified. This is stated on the authority of one very nearly concerned in the matter. To prove the estimation and appreciation o character in which George IV. was held by the inhabitants generally of Brighton, in 1828, a subscription was entered into and a statue (by Chantrey) erected on the Steyne, at a cost of £8,000.
In the reminiscences of Michael Kelly his Majesty is thus spoken of:—
" I cannot here refrain from mentioning a circumstance which occurred to me at Brighton, on the 1st of January* 1822, and I sincerely trust there will not appear any impropriety in my doing so, since it records a trait of gracious goodness and consideration in his Majesty which,
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