CHAPTER IX  pp. 279-310


By John Clark Marshman

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Lord Cornwallis was Mr. Pitt's invariable refuge in every Indian difficulty. When the Company's possessions were considered to be in danger from the proceedings of Warren Hastings, Lord Cornwallis was sent out to restore their security. When again, in 1797, Sir John Shore's weakness had brought on the mutiny of the officers which threatened the dissolution of Government, he was entreated to go out, if only for a year; and now he was importuned a third time in 1805 to undertake the office of Governor-General, and save the empire from the ruin with which it was supposed to be threatened through Lord Wellesley's ambition. His constitution was exhausted by thirty years of labour in America, in India and in Ireland, but he would not refuse what he considered the call of duty, and he landed at Calcutta on the 30th June, with the finger of death visibly upon him. Within twenty-four hours Lord Wellesley had the mortification to learn that his whole system of policy was to be immediately demolished. Lord Cornwallis lost no time in announcing that it was his object to restore the native princes to a condition of “vigour, efficiency, and “independent interest,” and to remove the impression of our design to establish British control over every Indian power.