682 | To the Earl of Hillsborough


    Boston Sep 17 1768

    My Lord

    I beg your Lordships ^favor^ in accepting my most grateful Acknowledgements of my Sense of the Honor your Lordship has done me by the Intimation of your kind Intentions towards me by my Lord Barrington.1 My whole Merit consists only in doing my Duty; if it is inhanced by the Difficulties which have attended it, I owe it in a great Measure to Accidents which have given me an Opportunity of showing those Principles, which ever have & I hope ever will form the Rule of my Conduct. It will be therefore with the greatest Humility that I shall receive the further Marks of His Majestys Favour by which he shall be pleased to distinguish me.

    As to the Honor proposed for me, all private Considerations would induce me to decline it.2 But there is a Consideration of a public Nature which has influenced me to examine how far the Difficulties which lie in the Way of my accepting this Honor are capable of being removed. This is a Reflexion on the Nature & Use of Honours accompanied with a little Self Flattery that even in my insignificant Person an Example might be held forth to encourage other Governors to adhere to their Duty, & discourage a ^the^ People from attempting to ru[in?] a Governor for his Fidelity to the King; in which within this Province they have more than once succeeded. Upon this Account I have desired some Time to consider of this Proposal.

    The Offer of the Government of Virginia I most thankfully accept, supposing I shall hold it on the same Terms as the immediate Predecessor. I want Peace & Quiet; & it becomes Time that I should have them. For tho my Constitution is pretty good, & the firmness of my Mi[nd]3 has never failed me, so that I have borne the Insolence of the Faction, which has harrast this Government for above 3 Years, better than most Men would have done; yet I find that I am worn & want a little Rest; which it seems I may expect in Virginia. Besides it is high Time, wh[ile] I remain fit for Business, that I should make so[me] better Provision for my large Family than I have hitherto done; this Government being never much more than a Subsistence, & for these last 3 Years having fell short of that.

    The Leave of Absence which your Lordship has been so good as to procure for me comes very Opportunely; when fresh Troubles are arising, which will make my Service here of very little Use to his Majesty: For in my Opinion all hopes of restoring Peace to this Government by conciliatory Measures are over. Nor is it less timely as to the Use I may be of at Westminster. For it seems to me that the true State of this Country has never been well understood there[,] at least untill the Idea that your Lordship seems to have of it, took Place. I therefore shall embark by the first Opportunity, which I hope wont exceed a fortnight.

    I am &c

    The Earl of Hillsborough

    L, LbC     BP, 7: 43-45.

    In handwriting of Thomas Bernard. Minor emendations not shown. This letter was probably never sent, for reasons explained below, and FB substituted No. 683 instead.