PEEL, Sir ROBERT (1788-1850, Prime Minister and statesman)
Letters by Peel with such significant content are uncommon. His disappointment at loss of office after only 100 days is clear from the letter as is his frustration with Wellington, his former Foreign Secretary, whose alliance with Peel had proved an uneasy one. Peel has been described at this time as being 'in deep despondency, high dudgeon and a state of physical exhaustion' and he kept away from Wellington for some five months until a rapprochement was effected by Arbuthnot.
Nor was there was any deep love between Peel and Lyndhurst, the recipient and Lord Chancellor from December 1835 to April 1835. Lyndhurst once exploded: 'Peel! what is Peel to me? Damn Peel!'
The paper by Wellington referred to in the letter may well have reflected the Duke's conclusion that a coalition government was necessary despite it having been anathema to him five years previously. He recorded at this time that the 'only thing that I can see a chance for the country is that the King should try and compose a Ministry out of the different Parties, Lord Grey, Stanley and Peel and so on. And yet that is a dream - a mere vision...'