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“Burgoyne’s Defeat” at London

From Diary of the American Revolution, Vol I. Compiled by Frank Moore and published in 1859.

December 9. –A correspondent in London writing under this date, says: –“The account of General Burgoyne’s treaty with Mr. Gates, arriving when the two Houses of Parliament were sitting, and in the warmth of high debate, the friends of government were much confounded and staggered by such a shock; but you cannot imagine how furiously, illiberally, and indecently opposition triumphed on the occasion, opening and roaring like so many bull dogs against administration. The King, God bless him, for we never had a better one, and no other nation had ever so good a one, who feels every calamity and misfortune of his people, was greatly affected; but, with that magnanimity which distinguishes his character, he soon declared that such a cause could never be given up, that this loss must be retrieved by greater and more vigorous exertions, and that he would even ‘sell Hanover and all his private estate, before he would desert the cause of his loyal American subjects, who had suffered so much for him.’

“In two or three days the nation recovered from its surprise, and now is ready to support the King and his ministers in the proper and vigorous use of such means as are adequate to the great end of reducing the revolted colonies to a constitutional subordination. Many in both Houses of Parliament have spoken to this effect with great spirit, and one member of the Commons, Mr. Cambridge, said that he would part with reluctance with one shilling in the pound towards raising another army of ten thousand men for America, yet he would cheerfully pay twelve shillings in the pound towards an additional army of sixty thousand men.”1


1 Pennsylvania Ledger, March 7, 1778.