Letter – Charles Grey to John Lambton – 31 Aug 1823

Document Type: Letter
Date: 31 Aug 1823
Correspondent: Charles Grey
Recipient: John Lambton
Archive Source: DUL JGL A40 8-11
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                                               					Tunbridge Wells Aug.t 31 1823

My dear Lambton

      I have this morning had a most unexpected & extraordinary communication of the cause of the rupture between Sir John & Beaumont; in a letter from the latter. The man must be as mad as Bedlam.  What do you think of his having told first his intended wife, & one of her sisters & then Edward Swinburne, that Lady S was a woman of most abandoned character & had had intrigues with me, the General & her Butler, & calling on me for a confirmation of the charge - the causes of this act, which in truth is proof enough of madness, are stated in a manner so strange & incoherent as to leave no doubt of the state of his Head.  What appears almost as extraordinary as the conduct of Beaumont himself, is that young Edwd Swinburne should not have annihilated him on the spot.   On the contrary he appears to have gone very quietly with him to Sir John, that he might repeat to him the same charge.  Sir John with some feeling, flew into a <furie> , would hear nothing, & turned him out of the House.  I will send you the letter, or a copy, but I cannot at present part with the letter & have not time to make a copy.  In the mean time I send you my answer - I do not see how I could say less & it did not appear to me necessary to say more in answer to a Madman.  To <verify> my own mind <herein> on this point, <which is the only doubtful one>  I consulted Creavey who is here, under a strict injunction of secrecy & he confirmed my opinion.  What is to come of this I don’t know, but it is possible Beaumont may force me into a quarrel a link I cannot avoid, tho I do not think he can find a friend to consult, sufficiently foolish or <…….> not to tell him how infamous he must make himself by such a proceeding.  This precious letter he sent express by his servant who will leave town by the Mail tonight with my answer.  You will of course keep this perfectly secret.

      I had just before received a letter from Ridley telling me he had heard that Beaumont meant to take the Chiltern Hundreds & urging me in that event, to bring Henry forward, of which success he thinks there can be no doubt.  I certainly am anxious to get him into Parliament & this might be an easy way of getting him a seat.  That I could not face a contest, & with this explanation I have written to Ridley to say if it could be done without expense & was wished by our friends, I should be very glad to have Henry put up as a Candidate.  Keep this also to yourself for the moment.   

       Yours &c


I did not perceive till I turned the leaf that I was writing on half a sheet of paper

[on verso:]

J G Lambton/ The Honble E. Petres/ Stapleton/ Ferrybridge
JGL A/40/8. Original letters from Earl Grey to his son-in-law John George Lambton, later first Earl of Durham

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