Famed for his masterful oratory and fearless criticism of parliamentary opponents, William Pitt the Elder (1708-78) distinguished himself through the strong leadership he provided during Britain's struggle against France in the Seven Years' War. Edited by his great-grandsons and first published between 1838 and 1840, this four-volume collection presents nearly forty years' worth of letters to and from the great statesman. Each volume also contains a useful list of the principal officers of state for the period covered, along with facsimile plates of letters and signatures by some of Pitt's eminent correspondents. Volume 1 (1838) covers the period 1741-59, although most of the letters date from 1754 onwards. Including six pre-1760 letters, Volume 2 (1838) chiefly covers the period from 1760 through to the end of July 1766. Volume 3 (1839) covers the period from 1766 through to November 1770. Volume 4 (1840) covers the period from November 1770 until Pitt's death in May 1778.