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90 WARREN HASTINGS.

It seems difficult to refute these arguments. But the inveterate
hatred borne by Francis to Hastings had excited general disgust.
The House decided that Francis should not be a manager. Pitt
voted with the majority, Dundas with the minority.

In the mean time, the preparations for the trial had proceeded
rapidly; and on the 13th of February_. 1788, the sittings of the
Court commenced. There have been spectacles more dazzling to
the eye, more gorgeous with jewellery and cloth of gold, more at-
tractive to grown-up children, than that which was then exhibited
at Westminster; but, perhaps, there never was a spectacle so well
calculated to strike a highly cultivated, a reflecting, an imagina-
tive mind. All the various kinds of interest which belong to
the near and to the distant, to the present and to the past,
were collected on one spot, and in one hour. All the talents and
all the accomplishments which are developed by liberty and civil-
isation were now displayed, with every advantage that could be
derived both from co—operation and from contrast. Every step in
the proceedings carried the mind either backward, through many
troubled centuries, to the days when the foundations of our consti-
tution were laid ; or far away, over boundless seas and deserts, to
dusky nations living under strange stars, worshipping strange gods,
and writing strange characters from right to left. The High Court
of Parliament was to sit, according to forms handed down from
the days of the Plantagenets, on an Englishman accused of exer-
cising tyranny over the lord of the holy city of Benares, and over
the ladies of the princely house of Oude.

The place was worthy of such a trial. It was the great hall of
‘William Rufus, the hall which had resounded with acclamations
at the inauguration of thirty kings, the hall which had witnessed
the just sentence of Bacon and the just. absolution of Somers, the
hall where the eloquence of Strafibrd had for a moment awed and
melted a victorious party inflamed with just resentment, the hall
where Charles had confronted the High Court of Justice with the
placid courage which has halt‘ redeemed his fame. Neither mili-
tary nor civil pomp was wanting. The avenues were lined with
grenadiers. The streets were kept clear by cavalry. The peers,
robed in gold and ermine, were marshalled by the heralds under
Garter King-at-arms. The judges in their vestments of state at-
tended to give advice on points of law. Near a. hundred and
seventy lords, three fourths of the Upper House as the Upper

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