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The Creevey Papers
Thomas Creevey to James Currie, 24 May 1803

Vol. I. Contents
Ch. I: 1793-1804
Ch. II: 1805
Ch. III: 1805
Ch. IV: 1806-08
Ch. V: 1809
Ch. VI: 1810
Ch. VII: 1811
Ch. VIII: 1812
Ch. IX: 1813-14
Ch X: 1814-15
Ch XI: 1815-16
Ch XII: 1817-18
Ch XIII: 1819-20
Vol. II. Contents
Ch I: 1821
Ch. II: 1822
Ch. III: 1823-24
Ch. IV: 1825-26
Ch. V: 1827
Ch. VI: 1827-28
Ch. VII: 1828
Ch. VIII: 1829
Ch. IX: 1830-31
Ch. X: 1832-33
Ch. XI: 1833
Ch. XII: 1834
Ch XIII: 1835-36
Ch XIV: 1837-38
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Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
Produced by CATH
24th May, 1803.

“. . . Lord Hawkesbury* then began and made a very elaborate speech of two hours, containing little inflammatory matter, and being a fair and reasonable representation of his case and justification of the war. Erskine followed in the most confused, unintelligible, inefficient performance that ever came from the mouth of man. Then came the great fiend himself—Pitt—who, in the elevation of his tone of mind and composition, in the infinite energy of his style, the miraculous perspicuity and fluency of his periods, outdid (as it was thought) all former performances of his. Never, to be sure, was there such an exhibition; its effect was dreadful. He spoke nearly two hours—all for war, and for war without end. He would say nothing for Ministers, but he exhorted or rather commanded them to lose no time in establishing measures of finance suited to our situation. . . . Wilberforce made an inimitable speech for peace and on grounds the most calculated for popular approbation. . . . It is said the House of Commons never behaved so ill as in their reception of this speech. They tried over and over again to cough him down, but without effect. . . .”