HC Deb 11 February 1822 vol 6 cc220-76
Mr. Brougham,

in rising to bring before the House the present distressed state of the agricultural, and the other classes of the community, said, he was well aware that he had undertaken an arduous task. He was aware, also, that there were many gentlemen to whom it could have been much better in trusted; and if his hon. friend, the member for Essex (Mr. Western) had not been prevented by indisposition, although differing from him materially in opinion, he should have been well satisfied to have left it in his bands. Between himself and many others, indeed, with whom he had conversed upon the subject, the discordance was so wide, that he found it impossible to avoid himself bringing it forward. He did so at the risk of all disadvantages, of which no man was more sensible, but for the purpose of preserving consistency with the opinions he had formerly entertained and expressed, and which, God knew, in subsequent years, but especially in 1816, 1817, and 1818,had been most wofully confirmed. He feared that, in what be should say, it would be his misfortune to give little satisfaction to any of the great interests of the empire. He hardly entertained a hope that the agricultural interest would be contented with his view of the subject; because it ran counter to many of their most rooted prepossessions; because it did not admit that their situation, though worse than that of the rest of the community, was peculiar; because it did not adopt the remedies with respect to prices, to which many had so long looked forward; but, above all, because it called upon them to resist the king's government, and to stand up for the general relief of all their countrymen. It claimed of them that, turning neither to the right hand nor to the left, disregarding the quarter from which the relief was propounded, careless of its being opposed, nay, certain of its being strenuously resisted, by his majesty's ministers, they would only look at it with an attention to its own merits, with a regard merely to the facts of the case, and do their duty at length, to obtain relief for their deeply-injured country. It called upon some of them to retrace their steps; but it did not require any man to be guilty of what could strictly be termed inconsistency; inasmuch as the consequences of that policy of which they had been the patrons, and some of them the promoters, and without whose assistance it probably could never have been carried the fatal length to which it had proceeded, were never foreseen by them. It called upon them to reconsider that policy; but, under circumstances so different from those under which it was first adopted, that a wise man, who might at first sight appear to be inconsistent, would, on a thorough examination, be found to have only profited by experience—tardily, perhaps, because experience was a slow mistress even with the most willing pupils; but, certainly, because the firmness of conviction was in proportion to the difficulty of acquirement. It called upon some, therefore, to show that they had taken advantage of the lessons of time, and of events, and to act as wisdom prescribed; but, if the inconsistency were ten-fold greater—if it amounted even to the fair and explicit acknowledgment of an error—manliness would warrant what true wisdom now demanded.

One word as to the time at which this subject was brought forward. If it were asked, why he had not waited until ministers had proposed their scheme of relief, the question at the first view appeared to be reasonable: perhaps he might have found some difficuity in answering it, but for what passed on the first night of the session; but for the foretaste of the project, but for the opening of the principles, and the anticipation of the coming sweets, of the plan of the chancellor of the exchequer. Had not the right hon. gentleman given reason to expect, rather a budget of new taxes, than a reduction of the old ones—had he not maintained, that to remove any of the existing burdens, instead of operating a relief, would be an aggravation of the evil, something might have been hoped even from him. But what could be expected of a finance minister, impregnated with the doctrine, that ruin would follow the removal of those taxes which all classes fearlessly pronounced unnecessary? Perhaps he might be reminded from the opposite bench, of what passed on the third night of the session, when a lame explanation was attempted of what occurred on the first. When, however, a man had heard with his own ears, it was both wise and safe to trust to them. What was reported by another might be mistaken or misrepresented; but he had himself, fortunately, heard the chancellor of the exchequer; and recently after the avowal he had seen him again and again attacked for it, taunted by some, ridiculed by others, inveighed against by all, yet without any endeavour to explain or amend; nay, one of the staunchest friends of the chancellor of the exchequer had gone so far as to assert, that the doctrine thus unequivocally avowed would be the foundation of his vote against ministers. Who, then, could point out a safer or a better rule of conduct, than to believe that this doctrine was at the time sincerely entertained? And it was not because a secretary of the Treasury, an underling of office, eight and forty hours afterwards had been persuaded to eat up again what the chancellor of the exchequer had discharged, that he (Mr. B.) could be persuaded to give credit to the after-thought. If the right hon. gentleman had not intended to be the patron of taxation—if he did not really mean to assert that the repeal of taxes would aggravate the evil—if, indeed, he had been misapprehended and misrepresented in the warmth of debate, why had he left the statement of the error to an inferior member of the government? Why did he not himself, if not at the instant, at least afterwards, contradict it, and not allow an irresponsible coadjutor, a secretary of the Treasury, who was not a cabinet minister, come down on a subsequent day to declare that his right hon. friend had been grievously misunderstood? Even to this hour, to the sixth day after the strange doctrine had been propounded, there was nothing but the word of the secretary for the Treasury in opposition to the hearing of every member in the house, to show that there had been any mistake or misconception at all. If the disavowal were true, why had it not come from the only quarter which could properly disavow the assertion—that to lighten, the burdens of the people would be a public evil? He had a shrewd suspicion that this doctrine, though in words it might be a little qualified, would be found hereafter to pervade the whole of the budget; and he could not help looking forward to the decided interference of the House, as the only chance, the only hope of the country, to prevent that doctrine from being carried into full effect, and shining forth in all its glory in the measures of administration. When, drawn aside by the recollection of this singular declaration, he had been about to observe, that the question why he did not wait for the proposition of the ministers, would have been more difficult to answer, if he had himself had any scheme or plan to propound—if he had had to suggest the employment of any mass of machinery of much detail and minuteness, of complex operation and contrivance—if he had had any thing distinct and positive; in short, anything like a remedy or nostrum (call it what they pleased) to oppose to the existing system, and to obtain from the House the recognition of a principle, the following up of which he might hold necessary to the safety and well-being of the state. If the project on the other side were intended to proceed on the principle which he called upon the House to confirm—that of reducing taxation—no harm could possibly be done by the course he was pursuing: on the contrary, the right hon. gentlemen opposite would be able to carry into execution their plan of diminishing the burdens of the people, under the authority of the House itself. But if there scheme was established on that mischievous and absurd notion, that reduction of taxation afforded no prospect of relief, the sooner the House came to the resolution to defeat such a project, and to sanction the sounder principle, the better it would be for the nation at large. Either way, no injury could result; and, in the latter case, much good might, be the consequence, if it only prevented ministers from consuming the next three or four days in making out financial statements, to be laid upon the table, but wholly inconsistent with the situation and prospects of the country.

Having said thus much by way of preface, he would call the attention of the House to what he considered the real situation of the kingdom. And here it would be quite unnecessary to waste time in commenting on the vast amount of the distresses of the country: it would be superfluous to describe the pressure upon the various districts—to prove the wide extent of public suffering and calamity, or to show how heavily, though not by any means exclusively, it pressed upon agriculture. He wished merely to make one or two observations on this part of the subject, because he hoped thereby to remove a prevailing error. All men admitted the great amount of distress. The noble marquis had not denied it, nor could he very consistently do so; seeing that it had been most properly allowed, and lamented in the Speech from the throne. Some persons, nevertheless, (and that was the first mistake) were of opinion, that the distresses were of a local, not of a general nature; and others thought that they were confined to a particular class—the farming interest. Now, he had taken considerable pains to ascertain the trite condition of all parts of the empire; and, speaking of England, he had reason to believe that some districts of the north (he did not say the north generally) were suffering less than the kingdom at large. He believed, however, that this more favourable state of things was confined to portions of Yorkshire (especially to the neighbourhood of manufacturing districts), and to the more northerly divisions of the kingdom in an eastern direction, such as Durham and Northumberland. The crops in that part of the country, from the nature of the climate, and other local causes, were sometimes not so well got in as they were in other districts of the kingdom which tended to keep up the price; but, on the other hand, when the crop there was supposed to be extremely abundant, and exceedingly well got in, it tended to produce a counteracting effect, and the prices were reduced. With this very trifling exception, he would undertake to say, that nothing could be more fallacious, than the idea which had fastened on some men's minds, that the distress was not general; and that the distress, in many parts of the country, was not severe, nay, terrible. Those persons supposed the distress to be confined to the agricultural counties of Kent, Sussex, Norfolk, and Suffolk; and certainly, if he had not heard such an opinion promulgated, he would not have believed that any human being could have ventured on so extraordinary an assertion. The fact was, that the distress, the causes of which he would presently point out, was general. There was another set of persons who adopted an opinion equally erroneous: he alluded to those who contended that the existing distress was peculiarly confined to the agricultural interest. For his own part, he confessed his utter inability to believe that to be the fact. That a little pressure, a passing or trifling distress, might affect the landed interest, unconnected with any other class of the community, was so dear and plain a proposition, that he need not stop to prove it; but that a long and serious course of distress should continue to effect exclusively, one body of the people, and that that distress should not only be of long duration, but that it should appear to be progressively increasing, was what experience did not authorize any person to believe. The distress in 1816, was pretty nearly the same as was now described; but it was impossible that such distress should endure for six years—that its weight and pressure should be severe on the agriculturists—without affecting, most decidedly, every other class of people in the country. It originally bore hard on the growers of corn, but now it affected all those who were in any way connected with the soil. The fact he believed to be, that the pressure at the present moment was felt more by the stock than by the agricultural farmer. Now, that distress of so severe a nature and of such long duration, as that by which the farmer had been visited, should not in its effect sensibly touch every other branch of the community, was a proposition which he freely declared his inability to comprehend. It was so much beyond possibility—so far removed beyond the reach of reason—that he must express his decided denial of it. The contrary of such a proposition was so clear and evident, that, however an improved, or a supposed improved, state of the revenue, might be urged against his view of the subject, still this statement of the national resources had no more effect in altering his opinion, than if no such figures had ever been brought forward. If any one large branch of the community suffered by the pressure of the times, it was a necessary consequence, arising from the intermixture of all parts of society, that other classes must also be injured: but what must be the effect, when the body which most complained of distress—when that class of the community which suffered so generally, and for so very protracted a period, comprised neither more nor less than the whole of those persons who were engaged in the cultivation of the soil? Was it possible, when this was the case, that the home market should not be greatly contracted by a distress so general? The fact could not be doubted; and to counteract that depreciation, little in his opinion, would be effected by opening the sources of foreign trade. He was aware that foreign commerce presented many powerful stimulants to exertion and industry. He would not go over these, because he was convinced that, after all, it was the internal market for its manufactures which was of most importance to this country; and, to tell him that the home market could be in a flourishing state when the chief customers of the manufacturer were ruined, was to assert a proposition which, on the first view, presented a contradiction in terms. He was convinced of the justice of this remark by information which he had recently received from some of the manufacturing districts. Those who afforded him that information did not, indeed, state, that the manufacturing interest was so badly off as might be supposed; but they complained, that the demand of the agricultural interest for their commodities was very much contracted; and they farther stated, that the profits generally received on manufactures, and on the -stock employed by such manufacturers and traders, as had turned their attention to the foreign market, were very much reduced indeed; that they had fallen greatly below the amount which characterised a period even of moderate prosperity. There had, very recently, been a meeting of the iron-masters and manufacturers of Birmingham and its neighbourhood, for the purpose of considering what steps it would be proper to adopt with reference to their greatly-diminished profits. The gains of the best of them had been-extremely scanty, and many of them had lost considerably. Their balances for the last Christmas appeared to be about six per cent. less than they were at the Christmas preceding. They turned their attention seriously to their situation, and the expedient first proposed was, to contract the extent of production; or, in other words, to lessen the quantity of goods manufactured, so as to bring it on a level with the demand; and for that purpose to give up a considerable proportion of their furnaces. This, in effect, was nothing more nor less than lopping off and annihilating a large proportion of the iron-trade. The resolution was not, however, agreed to. The parties interested were anxious not to reduce the trade: they wished, if possible, to carry on the manufacture as they had heretofore done. But the resolution they ultimately came to was, to reduce very considerably the wages of their workmen. He only mentioned this, as one instance amongst many, to show that distress pervaded every class of the community. He introduced it rather as an example, than as a proof; of this fact—that if the agricultural interest was suffering, as he knew it was, and had been, it was quite impossible that all other branches of society must not suffer likewise.

Seeing, then, that this overwhelming distress pressed more or less on all classes of the community, they were led to ask, what it was the government had been doing, during the last twenty or five and twenty years, which had produced such a result? The House would perceive, in what he was about to offer, that he was not entering into any thing like a minute detail with respect to their financial or commercial policy during that period. But there were certain broad and undeniable facts, plain matters that could not be controverted, much less overturned, and which clearly proved what they had been doing during the period he had mentioned. To these he would call the attention of the House in a fair and correct statement, whatever offence it might give to those who were intimately connected with the transactions which had placed the country in its present situation. He held it to be perfectly true, that no man, or set of men, could, with a just view of the finances of the empire, with a proper regard for its general revenue, its prosperity, its wealth, and above all, for the revenue of individuals, which, was the only solid and safe foundation on which the revenue of the state could be built—he felt it to be a complete truism, that no man, taking a correct view of these different points, could think of persisting with impunity in the course which government had pursued for many years. He would only take three years; and these he did not select as a sample of the whole expenditure of the country; but he would take those three years as the period during which the system to which so much mischief had been justly ascribed had been raised to its utmost height. The years he alluded to were 1813, 1814, and 1815. The expenditure of those three years was, on an average, 132,000,000l. a year. In this sum he included the expense of managing and collecting the revenue, amounting to somewhere between four and five millions a year. He included that sum, because they would take a narrow and inadequate view of the expenditure of the country if it was omitted. It was money levied on the people for the service of the state. It was expensive to the subject as a matter of money; it was expensive to the constitution in point of right. It had, in fact, every quality of revenue, whether considered in a financial or constitutional point of view: and, therefore, in stating the expenditure, it ought not to be passed over. During those three years, then, the annual average expenditure was 132,000,000l.; and if they added to that sum the parish and county rates, which averaged 8,000,000l. per annum, they had a total of 140,000,000l. yearly, for no less a period than three years. That sum was taken from the pockets of the people—how equally he would hereafter explain—by taxes, which applied to those who possessed income, and by the operation of loans on those who had accumulated property. How was that immense sum spent? In describing the manner in which it was expended, he would not, in the first instance, use a harsh or disagreeable epithet. He would not speak of the disbursement of the public money in the way it deserved, until he had shown, by a reference to the opinion of a committee formed under the auspices of ministers themselves, what epithet was fairly due to it. The average expenditure of those three years was 140,000,000l., wrung from the income or the savings of the people; and in one of those years, 1814, the almost inconceivable sum of 145,000,000l. (all items included) was disbursed. The expenditure, exclusive of the interest and charge of the debt, amounted on an average to 83,000,000l. a year (during those three years), and the average revenue during the same period was 84,000,000l. a year; being one million over and above the ordinary expenditure. So provident was the system, so prosperous the affairs of the country, so natural the situation of the empire, in a financial point of view, that ministers were content to expend 83,000,000l., leaving only 1,000,000l. to provide for 60,000,000l. more which they were obliged to borrow; the average revenue being only 1,000,000l. more than the sum laid out. Now, if a man in private life, having an income of 10,000l. a year, went on increasing his expenditure till the interest of the debt which he incurred amounted to 5,000l. per annum; and if he still continued to spend the sum which should be employed in liquidating that interest, so that he was compelled every quarter to borrow money to meet his creditor, that individual would be precisely in the same situation in which the country was placed at the period he mentioned. The epithet which would be applied to a person who so managed his affairs he would not repeat, because he did not wish to utter any expression that might be offensive to the House; but, as the more delicate and decorous mode of proceeding, he would call on gentlemen to consider what they would think of a man who went on in the manner he had stated. Let them figure to themselves an individual giving such a statement of his affairs as he had pointed out, whether he was a trader, a manufacturer, or a farmer; let them reflect on the terms they would use in speaking of such a person, and he was convinced that they would see the propriety of applying terms of a similar nature to the management of the resources of this country at the period be had specified. He was unwilling to speak of the care and attention with which those enormous sums were spent. Having seen upwards of 400,000,000l. expended in three years—having seen, in those three years, 250,000,000l. of revenue laid out, independent of loans—having witnessed the expenditure by the government of immense sums extracted from the pockets of the people, sums of such magnitude as staggered one's credulity, and almost turned one's head to contemplate, he felt most unwilling, in his own person, to declare, whether it was a wasteful expendi- ture, or one of a wise and prudent character. He would much rather state, from higher and graver authority, in what point of view that enormous expenditure had been considered; and, with that object, he would call the attention of the House to the report of the Finance Committee of 1817. He would rely on the judgment of that committee, whose opinion, with respect to the national expenditure, he would now take the liberty to state. Let it not be forgotten, that the committee was not chosen by the opponents of ministers—that it was not selected from amongst those who were accustomed to dissent from their measures, or to thwart their views; but that the far greater proportion of its members were connected with the right hon. the chancellor of the exchequer, and nominated by the noble lord opposite. There were undoubtedly some independent and impartial individuals on that committee; but, for the most part, it was composed of gentlemen who must have been most willing hearers of any defence which could be set up, in support of the system of extraordinary expenditure, and who were acting in office with those by whom that system of expenditure had been commenced. Their conduct in coming to the report which had been laid before the House was not that of admission, but of absolute confession. The report was the confession of those who were most intimately connected with the parties whose proceedings they were sifting and investigating; and many of, the persons who agreed in that report were themselves parties to what had previously been done by ministers.

He would not trouble the House with many extracts from the report of that committe, but he entreated their attention to the character which was given of the manner in which the finances of the country were applied at the period to which he had alluded. Under the head of "extra-ordinaries" the following passages would be found:—"Your committee learn, that works, buildings, extensions, and repairs, have been undertaken and executed, both at home and abroad, in a manner little checked or protected against profusion, and waste; in many cases, without any estimate or general plan, and sometimes extended, according to the statement of an officer of the Ordnance who attended the committee, 'as views opened during the progress of the work.'" This was indeed, a faithful and accurate representation of a wise, economical, and careful expenditure! No check—on protection against profusion and waste—no estimate or general plan—no estimate or general plan—but the expense left to adjust itself to the opening views of those who conducted the works! Parliament, which should be accountable for the disbursement of the public money, was not consulted on the matter. No, the expense was left to adjust itself to "the opening views" which might, from time to time, dawn on the minds of those whose emoluments became greater in proportion to the magnitude of the sums expended. The report went on to state—"The lines at Chatham commenced under an expectation of their requiring no more than 50,000l.; Plymouth-lines, Spike-island, and the dépôt at Weedon-beck, may be taken as examples, with the addition of Gibraltar, in the foreign department." There was in the passage which he was now about to read, more sound and valuable wisdom, more accurate knowledge, the fruit of experience, a more awful warning to that House, than a man would be able to impart, if he spoke for half a century, although he were armed with the powers of an angel. Here they had the friends of ministers, the accomplices in their extravagant expenditure, after duly investigating the subject, coming forward with their eyes open, and stigmatising, in the strongest terms, the course which they themselves had previously pursued. This was their own confession; this was their own declaration, the offspring of melancholy experience. It spoke but one language—it said, most emphatically, "Beware of the course which you have heretofore pursued." "If (continued the report) "the whole sum required for these great works, or even for any one or them, had been at once submitted to the House, by regular estimate, there would have been an opportunity of considering the propriety of undertaking them, and of making previous inquiries with regard to three essential points:—1st, As to the security or means of defence intended to be obtained" That was, to inquire whether the least benefit was likely to result from the erection of such works. "2ndly, As to the probability of the works in question effecting such security or means of defence." Here two most material points for consideration: first, whether any such works should be allowed: and, next, if works were deemed necessary, whether those recommended were of that specific kind which were calculated to ensure the security contemplated. The third point which the report stated would be gained by the production of regular estimates, was an opportunity of instituting an inquiry "as to the value of the objects to be accomplished by those works, compared with the amount of the sums required for their completion; taking into consideration the probability of their being brought into use, in consequence of any operations of an enemy." The report next stated, that "the irregular mode of proceeding, which unfortunately prevailed during the time when all of these great works were begun, has had the effect of keeping the House in total ignorance as to the ultimate charge for any one of them; and in the Ordnance-office itself there appears to have been no sufficient document for taking a comprehensive view of the whole plan, with a detailed estimate annexed." The report in the next place, set forth, that 9,029,333l. had been expended in this irregular and unsatisfactory manner; "while the utility of these vast works was never put to the proof in the various chances of the late war." And it farther stated, "that the committee should look at an inquiry of this nature with much greater anxiety if they could conceive that the defence of the united kingdom either ought to rest, or was ever likely to depend, materially upon fortresses and garrisons. A powerful fleet and an unconquerable spirit pervading numerous population, with the means ay arming and training whatever proportion of that number may be required for any emergency, afford better security against foreign invasion, than can be derived from the most perfect system of lines and towers, which could be applied to every part of our extensive coast." Now, the plain English of this was, that the works in question had proceeeded on a totally wrong principle—that no such works ought, in fact, to have been attempted—and that, if security were at all to be tamed from defences of this kind, the works which cost the public such an immense sum were not sufficient for that purpose. The plan was bad, but the execution was so much worse, that if any good could possibly be derived from the former, the latter effectually prevented it. Such was the opinion of the Finance committee; and the evident meaning of the passages he had read was this—"That if you, the House of Commons, had refused supplies, until the estimates were laid before you—if you had considered the necessity of erecting such works before you voted away the money of your impoverished constituents—if you had taken those fair precautions which men of common honesty would have adopted—those works never would have been attempted—this monstrous evil would not have existed—those millions, wrung from the industry of the people, would not have been uselessly squandered!" for he would now use that expression, on the authority of the Finance committee. In the three years, then, 1813, 1814, and 1815, the average amount of revenue was 84,250,000l. yearly, and, the county and parish-taxes being taken into the account, the sum annually raised was 92,000,000l.; forming a total, in those three years exclusive of county and parish-taxes, and of loans, of 252,000,000l. and, including these, of 276,000,000l. a year, which were extracted, from the pockets of the people.

These sums almost defied imagination; but, a comparison with the expenditure of former periods would teach the House to, estimate their excessive magnitude. When Mr. Pitt brought forward the sinking fund, the national debt was, if he recollected rightly, 238,000,000l. Now, here they had an expenditure, in two of the three years he had mentioned, so extensive, so vast, that it would have been sufficient to pay off the whole of the national debt, as it stood at the commencement of the French war, as well as to defray all the expenses incidental to the government of the country. Peace had now arrived, but Unhappily without bringing in its train the blessings which were usually its attendants. It was customary, after a country had been drained of its resources—after such an inordinate, such an unnecessary expenditure, as had placed its affairs in 'a lamentable state of confusion, as had deranged, in an alarming degree its property (and here he spoke not to the alteration of the currency, a large chapter to which he would come presently)—a derangement, which the bare expenditure of so much money, raised by loan or by taxation, was sufficient to have produced—it was undoubtedly expected, when, after such a: struggle, war had ceased and peace was restored, that measures should be taken to diminish the burthens of the people. When they examined the subject, they must be surprised to see bow very little had been done for the purpose of diminishing those burthens. He would now leave out of his calculation all reference to the alteration in the currency. He would suppose that it had remained stationary from 1792 to the present time. Now the whole expenditure of the year 1820 was 75,000,000l.; the whole expenditure of the year 1806 was 79,500,009l.; so that the only difference of expenditure between a period of profound peace, and a period of active warfare, was 4,500,000l. To that extent only had the country been relieved. Compare this with the expenditure of the year 1804, a very expensive period, as it was the second year of war. In that year the expenditure was 76,000,000l., being only 1,000,000l. more than was expended in the fifth and sixth years of peace. Certainly this country was never before in such a deplorable situation. We had been at peace for no less than six years, and yet the expenditure was only 1,000,000l. less than was required in the second year of war. The revenue, in: 1820, was a fraction under 60,000,000l.; in a 1821, it was, as they now understood, 61,000,000., being an increase of about 1,000,000l., including the Irish revenue. And here he must be permitted to say, that the, increase of the Irish revenue was by no means so great—that the state of that revenue did not present so flattering a prospect as the right hon. the chancellor of the exchequer had described; because it would be found, that although the revenue of last year, as compared with 1820, presented a rise of 500,000l., yet that it was, with reference to the amount of revenue two years before, almost as much as 500,000l. short. The nett revenue of Ireland in 1818 was above 5,400,000l.: in 1820 it was 4,500,000l., in 1821 it was under 5,000,000l. He had already stated, that the revenue of this country raised by the taxes, independent of loans, was this year 61,000,000l., and last year 60,000,000l., including the expense of management and collection. From that sum he entirely separated various allowances, discounts, and drawbacks, which were levied on the people; some portion of which was repaid, and some not paid at all. The revenue, this year, was, it appeared 1,000,000l. more than the last; which, making no allowance for the change of currency, was about a million greater than it was in 1806, the amount in that year and in 1820 being nearly the same. So that in the fifth and sixth years of peace, after a war of unprecedented magnitude—they were draining from an impoverished people, last year, the same amount of taxation, and this year 1,000,000l. more than was raised in 1806, which was the fourth year of war.

He now came to the most important part of the question. And here it was necessary that he should go back to the year 1797, in order to trace the evil which afflicted the country to its very source—in order to combat that gross absurdity in argument, and that gross injustice in fact, which was pertinaciously adhered to by some individuals, who contended, that the returning to a metallic standard of currency created the existing distress; whereas the truth was, that the great origin of the evil must be sought for in the departure from that standard. He would in due time state his opinion on the subject of restoring the metallic standard; but here be must decidedly state, that whatever the effect of that restoration might have been, the grand mischief was occasioned by departing from the acknowledged standard of our currency. At first, the effect of the new system was not distinctly perceived; but, in the course of two or three years it was sufficiently manifest. In 1800 the evil had mounted to such a height, that its operation on the foreign exchanges became most evident. He would proceed to elucidate the subject by the reports of two committees which were appointed in the years 1810 and 1819. He meant not to assume any thing as a datum unless it was sanctioned by the authority of both these committees. In 1810, the Mint price of gold was 3l. 17s. 10½d. an ounce; and the market or bullion price of gold was 4l. 5s. being a depreciation of 9–10th per cent. It afterwards fell still more, and fluctuated very much; and those fluctuations were not the least evil of which he complained, since they had a ruinous effect with respect to the land-owners, and, indeed, with reference to every class of the community, except those who dealt in gold, and might be denominated the managers of the monied interest—of which a word hereafter. He could point out one year in which there was a fluctuation of 30 per cent—a fact which was directly in the teeth of the statement made by the chancellor of the exchequer, who proposed a resolution in 1811, which, acting under his sanction and authority, the House agreed to; declaring, that the bank note had never been depreciated—that gold was never cheaper, and the bank-note never dearer. Thus a state of things grew up, which no well-regulated government would have suffered to exist for one month; but which many gentlemen in that House prided themselves on having supported for ten or twelve years. The price of bullion, as estimated by the currency circulated in 1811 and 1812, showed a farther depreciation. In those years, the market price of gold was 4l. 19s. 2d½. on an average, being a depreciation of 27 in the hundred. The revenue in those years was 73,500,000l. If, therefore, he wished to find out how much that nominal sum amounted to in real sterling gold, for the purpose of stating what the people absolutely paid in 1811, and 1812, and also to show what they contributed in 1822, it would be necessary that he should diminish the sum in the ratio of 27 per cent, which, together with 3,500,000l. of new taxes, formed an aggregate of 19,800,000l. This sum being deducted from the gross amount of revenue collected in 1811–12, left a total of 53,700,000l.: so that in those years of war, the people actually paid 8,000,000l. less in gold than they paid in the present year, and 7,000,000l. less than they paid in the year preceding. Taking the average of the two years, they paid, in 1820–21, between seven and eight millions more than they did in two years of determined warfare. He might, if he pleased, take the depreciation at a considerably lower rate than he had done. He might indeed, take it at 4l. 11s. 4d., which, if applied to the diminution of 73,500,000l. of nominal revenue, would show that the people were now paying in solid guineas or sovereigns a much larger sum than they contributed in 1811–12. At that period, a war was raging all over Europe—a war of such immense magnitude as was previously unknown to this country. Every sea was covered with our fleets—every part of the world was filled with our armies, or the armies of our allies; and every court was enriched by our subsidies. We were then surrounded by vast perils—great battles were fought abroad—and at home, we were not free from danger and apprehension—"Plenum variis casibus, atrox prœliis, discors seditionibus." Such a period, one would suppose, must be very unfit to stand in comparison with a period of repose—to be placed in competition with a time of profound peace. Still, when they did compare the two periods, they would find that the burthens which weighed down the people—that the sums which were taken from their pockets—were actually greater in the time of peace than in the time of war. He would go still farther, and say, that he had no objection to institute a comparison between the amount of money now levied on the people, and the sum that was exacted from them during the most expensive period of that most expensive war. What would the House think when he asserted, that though in the years 1813, 1814, and 1815, three years of an inordinate expenditure—three years that had been alluded to particularly in the financial report, when ministers were squandering away 140 or 150 millions annually, and levying on the people a money sum of 80 millions—what, he asked, would the House think when it was rendered as clear as that two and two made four, that the country was, at the present moment, paying as much in taxes as it paid at that extravagant period? Five pounds per ounce was the average price of gold in those three years, being a depreciation of 28¼ per cent. Now, if they supposed the revenue of those years, being 84,500,000l., to be levied in a bullion or money currency, and not in a currency depreciated 28¼ per cent they must deduct 23,500,000l., which would bring the revenue, during 1813, 1814, and 1815, to an average of 61,000,000l. per annum, at par, which 61,000,000l. was exactly the sum that the people now paid, and which the chancellor of the exchequer would, ere long, boast to the country that he was reaping from the taxes. Considering this question with reference to the year 1819, a very great rise would be found to have taken place under the monied system. He did not mean to argue that the proceedings of the committee of 1819 had entirely caused the rise in the price of gold. Undoubtedly, as far as its labours tended to produce a restoration of the metallic standard, to that extent it created the effect to which he had already alluded. Between 1819 and 1822, the measure agreed to by parliament operated to raise the real amount of taxation to a sum which answered, on the nominal amount then levied, to 3,800,000l. So by the operation, of the measure in 4819 they raised the taxes very nearly 4,000,000l. a year, pretending at the same time not to raise them at all. No: so far from seeming to think that this operation had raised the taxes—marvellous to tell—when this increase took place, that was the very time chosen by ministers, and by the house of Commons who supported them, for adding 3,000,000l. more to the taxes, that we might be completely bowed down and crushed to the earth. This too, they did completely in the dark. When they were perfectly ignorant of the operation of the other measure, or the extent to which it might proceed, they aimed this blow in the dark; ignorant of what quarter it might strike, or with what weight it might press upon particular classes. Instead of watching the effects of a restoration to cash payments—instead of abstaining from further taxes, at least till they were sure of the income in an improved currency—instead of waiting to calculate the amount to which the serious alterations then made might affect the various classes of tax-payers—instead of ascertaining whether the sums already enforced could be actually levied,—that was the very time chosen for imposing 3,000,000l. more, as if the 4,000,000l. were not already sufficient.

Now, what he wished, should be particularly attended to in the further obsertions which he had to offer, without any reference to what appeared differently to different minds, without referring to the particular alterations arising from a change in the currency which affected prices generally, on which he regretted to differ from some able and excellent members of the committee; but taking it on their own ground, as a change indicated by the return of the market-price of gold to the Mint-price, as manifesting by its rise only the depreciation of the currency previously—without reference to this, what he wished to be now understood were these two points: 1st, That by the operations of the currency up to, 1819, the taxes were increased 4,000,000l.: 2ndly, That from 1814 to 1819 prices were nominally falling, There prevailed a very great difference of opinion with respect to the effect of taxation. Some opinions upon the subject refuted themselves; others, every day's experience was sufficient to refute. But there were some points in which all must agree:—1st, That great expenditure has the effect of raising prices, and that not merely while the great expenditure is going on, but after it has ceased: because, when the expenditure is great, the spending is either from the income, or from the accumulated capital. If it be from the income, the profits of the accumulation of capital are taken away. If from the capital, it destroys to that amount, not physically and absolutely, but on the whole, it destroys a sum falling considerably short of the apparent amount, but it makes a great destruction. The consequence is, that the capital is diminished and the profits increased, by a rule as old as political speculation in modern Europe, a rule of which no man was ignorant for the last twenty or; thirty years—namely, that profits are in the inverse proportion of the amount of expenditure; or, what is equally clear, that there must be an increase of profits with a diminution of capital stock. This, then, was one obvious effect of taxation—it raised prices by diminishing either the accumulation of profits, or the amount of stock. In the next place, taxes affected the community not as necessary expenditure, but in another way. He doubted whether any man alive could deny—whether even the right hon. the Chancellor of the Exchequer, who was the guardian angel of that department, could deny, that if he imposed a tax, it injured in proportion to the amount of that tax. Taxes paid to the amount of 61,000,000l., by so much, undeniably, reduced the comforts and enjoyments of the payers. But it was equally undoubted that this amount of taxes had another effect, and to that effect he particularly requested their attention. When a tax is raised, the person who first pays it must increase his capital, or diminish his transactions. A larger capital is therefore required fur the same extent of business. Take a maltster, for instance, or brewer: the old duty on beer was 10s. 6d. It was raised to 18s. 8d., and to 34s. It was again taken down nominally 16s., but really much less. It was raised again 8s., so as to stand at present at 28s. per bushel. If, then, the tax he viewed were raised from 10s. 6d. to 28s. the maltster requires to raise his capital in proportion. The consequence of this necessity—a consequence proved by experience and by the papers on the table of the House—was the exclusion from the trade of the smaller capitalists, by which the larger capitalists were better off. But the public were not better off; for the competition of small capitalists was the only means of preventing the great capitalists from monopolising and making exorbitant profits. Here, then, was the second effect of taxes. They had the obvious effect of excluding small capitals from trade. The fact was at once proved and illustrated by petitions on their table, opposing a reduction of taxes on this very principle. There had not been a recent reduction of taxes without some persons praying the House not to reduce them. Let the leather-tax be taken as an instance. "Oh, don't take off the leather-tax," prayed the large capitalists, "you'll ruin us if you do." They did not tell their reason for resisting this reduction; that would let out the secret; but they attempted on other grounds to prevent it, and their petitions were always well-received by the Chancellor of the Exchequer and his friends, who were sure to laud the petitioners as the most judicious, impartial, disinterested set of men; they were ex, elusively the solid, rational, disinterested tanners; but they who prayed for the reduction of the tax were "ill-informed" persons. The farmer prayed to be relieved from the leather-tax, because it fell on his farm-gear, and the small dealer, because it excluded him from the trade; but the great tanner cared not one farthing for the farmer, and less than a farthing for the small tanner. If the archives of the Exchequer were searched, the imposition, increase, or continuance of taxes would be traced, not to the philosopher certainly, nor to the consumer, whose interest was obviously opposed to it, but to dealers in a great line of business. He did not mean to say that every one acted so; but this was generally the fact.

The last effect of taxes to which he wished to call the attention of the House, was, that they increased prices as well as capital. Every one who paid a tax advanced the price to the consumer to that extent and more. If the tax formed a fraction of the price, such as 5¼d., the consumer was charged 5½d., perhaps 6d. The trader made the consumer pay for the advanced capital, and for the advance to government. If the tax falls on the Manufacturer, he imposes the taxes which he pays over to government on the immediate purchaser, and the purchaser on the consumer of the productions; and imposes them without much nicety. So that they increase like compound interest, rounding sums as they proceed, and increasing in a geometrical ratio the augmentation or rather reduplication of taxes, till the last consumer can form no notion of what the original tax was. In this way the tax first imposed by the government increased as it advanced, till it fell with all its augmentation, or rather, as he had said, reduplication of amount upon the consumer. Now this threefold operation of taxes he really considered as the cause of public distress. They had seen that enormous expenditure of taxes increased prices—that the subsequent increase of capital and prices threw men of small capital out of business, and increased the burdens of the public—and, that the sums levied operated, not in the proportion of payments made to the Treasury, though those payments, when 61,000,000l. were paid, were enough to account for distress, but that more than government did levy, or meant to levy, fell upon the community. When in 1792, the income of the state, including Ireland, was 18,000,000l., the contribution was a considerable portion taken off from a gentleman's income of 10,000l. a-year: but that full very far short of his proportion of 61,000,000l. a-year. The last proportion necessarily left him less to apply to his comforts and enjoyments, less to sink his debts, less to maintain his credit. But this gentleman paid incalculably more, over and above his payments in 1792, than the increased proportion of 61,000,000l. over the proportion of 18,000,000l. He paid more, first, by the increase of prices; and secondly, as a producer, the expenses of cultivation being increased. He first paid by the increase of taxes: he next paid as a consumer by the increased prices of what he consumed: he lastly paid as a producer, the expenses of the cultivation having been raised. His returns had naturally fallen to what they were in 1792; but his establishments, his expenditure, his taxes, were increased fourfold, and that left little to marvel at the distress which he now felt.

By the total amount, then, of taxes, the country was distressed, it was further distressed by the greater amount it paid in taxes than was produced to the state. Nevertheless, as the inequality of the taxes did exist, and as the farmer belonged to the class on which taxation fell, and had always fallen, with unequal severity, it became necessary to attend to this view of its operation. The remedy of reducing rents had been resorted to it had arisen from feelings which could not be too much commended. But as that reduction had become quite necessary to the farmer, so the undiminished rents were necessary to the landlord, and the utmost reductions which could be made were inadequate. The farmer complained of the fall in the price of produces Wheat sold 20s. per quarter lower than he could afford for growing it. Suppose, then, it was at the least 10s. per quarter lower than the price at which the farmer could afford to grow wheat, and that unless the price should be increased to that amount, he loses by growing it. He to thought the loss much greater, but he would take it at 10s. Supposing, then, acre produced three quarters here was a sacrifice of 30s. an acre. This increase, of present prices he required to recompense him in the produce of wheat. What relief, them, could he have from lowering his rents? The whole rent was not 30s. The average rent was nothing like it. What did it avail, then, to lower, the rent 20, 25, or even 30 per cent? Could any such reduction compensate the farmer for the increased price in all the means of production? It taking the years of 1793, 1794, and 1796, and comb paring them with the three last years up to this time, the rise in the price of production amount almost to cent per cent, was it astonishing that the tenantry of the kingdom were depressed? Or, was it to be presumed that a reduction of rent to the greatest possible amount to which it could be carried, could effect any alleviation? No: from such a source no remedy could be expected. The attempt must be ruinous to the landlord, without, affording any effectual relief to the tenant. And whilst he was on the subject of the reduction, he must add, that, where reductions were made, instead of any general average, it would, in the majority of cases, be far better, both to landlord and tenant, to examine into the particular circumstances of each farm, and on the result of that examination to determine the exact amount. From local circumstances in various parts of the kingdom a general average was not applicable. If the great cause of agricultural distress be the increase in the price of production—and if the depression be such as to demand immediate relief—what imports it to the cultivator of the land, whether that relief reaches him either in the shape of an increased price for the commodity, which he grows, or a diminution in the expence of production.—He would put a case. A farmer raises 100 quarters of corn, for which the remunerating price was 60s.; if, in the shape of relief, he received a fall of 10s. per quarter in the expence of the production, it can make no difference to him whether he receives 60s. without the relief, or 50 with such a diminution in his expenditure. It was true, that he would have, on the side of nominal income, less to receive; but then, his outgoings also would be proportionably reduced: he would receive less for his produce, but he would have also less to pay in the market of labour, less to disburse in the price of all those articles which were essential to the management of his concerns. He rested this case on the assumption, that a choice existed between the two modes of relief; namely, an increased price of the commodity which the farmer grew, or a diminution in the expence of the production. The fact was, however, that such an option did not exist. To raise the price of the commodity which the farmer grew he pronounced to be impossible. The experiment had been made, and the House must now see the result. When it was, introduced, he was one of those who considered it wisely and justly introduced; because it was of the first importance, at the close of such a war, and before there was time for the reduction of establish-meats, to give the grower a remunerating price. But if the close of the war was the time for such an experiment, the hour had now arrived when every effort must be resorted to, to lower to the lowest scale the establishments of the country, in order to relieve all its industrious branches from that burden of taxation which overlaid them. Even were it possible to raise the nominal price of corn, he should doubt of its expediency—but that discussion was nugatory, as the thing was altogether impossible. He need hardly remind the House of the circumstances that attended the rise in the price of corn in this country from 1792 to the year 1814. It was, in the recollection of the House, that during the latter year the board of agriculture addressed a circular to the various counties of England. The answers to that circular were embodied in their reports, which were laid before parliament. In these reports it was demonstrated, that the same quantity of labour, which in 1792 cost 85l., rose in 1803 to 118l., and in 1813 to 160l. With respect to the year 1812, it was but justice to the argument to add, that that year was the period of the greatest depreciation in the currency. Allowing for the amount of depreciation 25 per cent, and subtracting that sum from the rise in the price of labour, it would leave the calculation thus—that the same quantity of labour which, in 1792, cost 85l., in 1814 cost about 125l. Between that period and the present time, there had certainly been a fall in the nominal price or labour, but not to the amount at what it was in 1803. He was not far from the mark in taking the rise in the expences of cultivation from the years immediately before the war to the present at an increase of one half. In taking it at that amount, he felt he rather under-rated, than over rated it; but when he added to that amount the poor rates, and which must be viewed in the light of an increase of the price of labour, the result was, that the expences of cultivation had risen two-thirds, or were even doubled. The amount of the pressure arising from taxation being undisputed, there was abundant reason why every branch of the public economy looked forward to that relief which a thorough retrenchment could alone effect. But on no classs did the pressure so seriously lie, as on the agricultural body; indeed, there were special causes why the same weight, falling on the other branches, could not, in its effects, be so injurious as to them. The agriculturist was very differently circumstanced in the control of his concerns from the manufacturer. He did not, like him, possess the power of accommodating his supply to the demand. There were causes intrinsically affecting his concerns which gave him far less power over them: he was exposed to the operations of the seasons, and to all the accidents of the elements. Besides all these, the House would see that the imposition of a tax on a falling market must be injurious to the grower of the commodity, inasmuch as he was unable to shift it on the consumer. He was at the mercy of those fluctuations, to counteract which the manufacturer could provide, by the limitation of the supply to the demand. It had been said, and said justly, that low prices tended to relieve themselves. In such a state of things the manufacturer looked for his profit in a more extended consumption; and so would the agriculturist also, did not the operations of the exchequer interpose. He would find his compensation for a fall of price in a more extensive sale, did not the tax-gatherer interfere between the natural relation of cause and effect. By such interference, the agriculturist was shut out from that natural remedy which was open to every other branch in any depression of the prices. When the tax was so great as to form a great proportion of the price, the consumer was not affected in the same degree as the grower. Let them suppose that no tax was laid on sugar; or he would rather take malt, because it was more germane to their feelings. It was once during the war 34s. It was now 28s. The barley was 20s. or 21s. If they had no chancellors of the exchequer, happily for the farmer or consumer, barley would be purchased from 25s. to 20s., and a great deal less. The prices would be lower, but the quantity sold would be much greater. But unfortunately, there were chancellors of exchequer, and, therefore, the fall of prices was much less than one-fifth. The fall of 25s. to 20s. gave a reduction of one-fifth. But when they added the immoveable tax of 28s., the fall was only five in 49 or 50s., that was, instead of one-fifth, one-eleventh. The fact was so, as well as the reasoning. It was sometimes alleged, that propositions which were undeniable in theory were not found so true in practice. Of this a notable instance was the fact, that in the exchequer two and two sometimes made only two. The consumption of malt in three years, ending in 1797, had been 3,500,000 quarters. That fact was found in the right hon. gentleman's own documents. But in the last three years but one, in 1818, 1819, 1820, the consumption had been 2,920,000 quarters, giving a falling off of one-seventh. That single fact was enough for him. But there was one circumstance to be considered, which, instead of overturning the argument, or stepping between its facts and their force, increased its power, and pointed its application. But for the taxes there would have been a much greater fall than one-fifth, and consequently a greatly increased consumption. The population, by the last returns, had increased astonishingly since 1811. The increase in Great Britain was from 11,954,000 to 14,069,000. In 1801, the population had been 10,500,000. It was below the mark if they estimated the increase since 1792 at 400,000 or 500,000 more. Here, then, was an increase of 4,000,000—an increase from 10 to 14, but the consumption of malt had fallen in the proportion of one-sixth or one seventh. If instead of 2,000,000 quarters, or 3,000,000, we consumed very nearly 5,000,000, there would be no positive increase. It would be only the same proportional demand. But while the population increased, the consumption decreased. If this did not speak volumes as to the fact, that laying taxes on produce diminished the consumption—if any one doubted, in the face of this, that taxes curtailed the comforts of the consumer, Without benefiting the exchequer—if he doubted that prices and consumption would reciprocally operate upon and relieve one another, but for the taxes—he was one with whom it was needless to reason—he was as much beyond the reach of reasoning suggested by experience, as the bulk of mankind was beyond the reach of any other sort of reasoning. The taxes, then, which in this way fell with peculiar injury upon the farmer, were extremely heavy. Beer, and spirits formed an immense amount. He paid taxes for various articles required for beer, as hops, malt, and beer duty. For these, excluding the tax on spirits, from 8,000,000l. to 9,000,000l. were paid. These and spirits yielded about 13,000,000l. If any man would say that this was a fair proportion of taxes, he was not wise. He would ask any man, when he took into calculation what the land paid in its great staples of hops, malt, &c. to shew hint any trade or branch of industry, which sustained such a pressure. There was nothing like an approximation, except in the case of the poor loaded West India planter. The operation of a tax on the farmer, in various parts of the country, was influenced by peculiar circumstances. Take, for instance, the Salt-tax. In Cheshire, so great was the use of that article in all the ordinary occupations of the farming interest, that he knew, from good authority, that a reduction of rent to the amount of five per cent. was calculated, from the operation of that tax alone. But in fact, any tax on an article of such necessity as salt, and which raised its price to the consumer, in such an extreme disproportion from its prime cost, mus be impolitic. It was of a description which might be well called a tax upon economy. It interfered with all those habits of prudence and retrenchment which were so necessary to the well-being and success of that class of the community. When a tax was levied on the farmer, producing, as its necessary effect, an increased price of labour, and an increase in the price of every other article employed in the cultivation of the land, he possesses by the peculiar nature of his calling, no power to transfer from himself the extra cost which the tax or the fluctuation of markets imposes. All that he contracts for, under such circumstances, he must pay for in hard money or in hard labour. We had a remarkable instance of this some few years ago. It was an instance which marked with great power of discrimination the difference of character that had hitherto existed between the agricultural interest, and the manufacturing and commercial body. The former—quiet creatures—came at the call of tilt Treasury annually to be shorn. It was no until last year, and until the pressure almost became intolerable, that they eve united to obtain a common object. And what was the effect? Why, the repeal c the Husbandry Horse tax. Cattle and human labour might be called the machinery of the farmer. Now, contrast that tardy repeal with what had passed sour few years ago, when a duty upon iron m proposed by the government for the time being. What iron was to the manufacturer, cattle was to the cultivator. The were the machinery of their respective cot terns. A tax was to be imposed upon iron. Steam fortunately was beyond the power even of a chancellor of the Exchequer. He would have taxed that too; but it was either too subtile or of too explosive quality to have given financial rapacity the power of a grasp. But, though deterred from contending with the moving power, the chancellor of the Exchequr was determined to take hold of the raw material. When that determination was disclosed the hard dealers in that article, less malleable than the metali n which the dealt beleagured and besieged hon. friends of his in such a manner, and with such remorseless pertinacity; those men from the iron counties so pressed and so pelted the government of that day, as well as the members of that House, that their fierce and unbending demands seemed,—"an Iron sleet of arrowy shower," and the result was, an abandonment of the tax.

Now, to pause for a moment. From a little more than half a million in the year 1750, and from something more than two millions in the year 1791, the poor-rates of England had increased to such an extent, that in one year of difficulty they had amounted to eight millions; and it was not overrating them, if be now took them at six millions. That was just three times the sum which was paid for them before the war. The only hope of relief to the suffering classes lay in a determined reduction of the taxes which oppressed them. Not in a paltry diminution of a million, or a million and a half; or two millions, but in lopping off at once some such considerable burden as should enable the starving farmer to live—in some serious relief of the community, which might enable men to exist under the pressure that would remain. He had already shown that, under the name of paying less than it paid in time of war, the country, in fact, was paying quite as much; that, with the semblance of paying millions less than had been paid in the heart of the war, the country, in reality, paid seven millions a year more; that with a pretence of paying less, the country paid a million more in the present year, than she had ever paid in the most extravagant year of the contest; and that in the year just passed, her situation had been the same. Why, then, even say that taxes to the amount of seven or eight millions were now taken off, the country would still be paying as much as she paid in 1806, or 1807—years of war and of profuse expenditure—years of dis. tress, and almost of ruin—years in which the country was told to look forward to peace for relief—years when all classes were gulled out of their money, and when parliament was duped into becoming the accomplice of government, in grinding a suffering people to the uttermost, and when all the consolation, all the argument all the temptation held out was this—"this cannot last; peace must come; with peace will come retrenchment and reduction of taxes; and with retrenchment and reduction will return the prosperity of England." Peace had come at last; but not with "healing on its wings." It had come without bringing any reduction of taxes; in fact, it had brought a positive increase of them. The country actually paid more than she had paid during the war; although her power of payment had so materially decreased. And this part of his subject brought him to a point upon which he thought it only fair to state, that he differed in opinion from a number of eminent persons: he alluded to the alteration which had taken place in the currency of the country. He had not enjoyed the honour of being a member of the bullion committee; not because he had refused to' serve, but probably because he had been thought unfit for such an office. It had seemed good, he repeated, to those in whom the selection had been vested, to exclude his name, for some cause, from the list; and when the question of his exclusion had, by his right hon. friend near him, been brought before the house, it had seemed good to the House, to sanction his being shut out. Of that measure he was far from complaining; for, in truth, he felt honoured by the rejection. He felt honoured, because it was not the first occasion upon which ministers had exercised the discretion intrusted to them in the same way—because they had only treated him as, in the year 1797, they treated one of the greatest men in the country (Mr. Fox), whom they had then excluded from the performance of a similar duty. Owing to his exclusion from the list of the bullion committee, he had been deprived of one opportunity of stating his opinion upon the measures projected; and illness, which prevented his attendance in the House, had precluded him, in another stage, from protesting against them; yet he could not but think, upon deep consideration, that the House at that time had taken a most unfortunate step. He imputed no blame upon that point to ministers; still less did he cast reflections upon others, who, with perfect consistency, had abetted the course chosen. That which he chiefly did blame was, the original sin of 1797, which, first interfering with the currency of the country, distorted the whole face of its internal affairs—made it impossible for any man in it to say from year to year, or even from month to month, what he was worth—and threw all its interests into such a state at last, that a return to the original system was attended with greater evils than had at first induced that system to be departed from. To say that he now was aware of any mode by which the currency of the country could at that time have been regulated, was going farther than the present question required; but he could not help lamenting that more attention had not been paid to the enormous amount of the evils that were certain under the course adopted. How bad soever a depreciated currency might be—however bad, as example, the tampering with it permanently—however detrimental to the character of government and of the country—yet he could not help regretting most deeply—always admitting the case to be a mere choice of evils, and of evils, the least of which was frightfully enormous—that only one side of the dilemma had been viewed, and that reference had not been made to the fatal prospect presented by the other.

Once more let it be borne in the recollection of the House, that not only a relief, but a great and invaluable relief might be afforded to all classes by a reduction in taxation. Let nothing which he might say be taken as a waver of that conclusion—a conclusion which was warranted by the facts as well as by the principles of the case—which was evident alike from theory and from daily experience—a conclusion from which he firmly believed not three men in the House would dissent, and not one man out of it: for, where was the man who could refuse to admit that the grand source of relief to the country must be in a diminution of its burdens? Still, while he felt all the value of reduction, he felt that, spite of all reduction, much pressure must remain. It would be deceiving the House, if he were to hesitate in avowing, that, after every resource of economy was exhausted, much evil would continue to exist. He did not mean to convey an impression that the evil so remaining woud be intolerable: the relief that retrenchment and reduction would afford would give the country spirit to endure the burden that was left; but a very considerable burden would be left. And here, again, the pressure fell most heavily upon the agricultural classes, in consequnece of the peculiar situation of their affairs. It was often said, with reference to the subject of prices, that they were not lower now than they had been before the war. Perhaps they were not quite so low. Then why, it was asked could not men bear low prices now, as they bore them in 1792 and 1793? If there were no taxes in the country, nor any debts existing, they could bear them. Independently of the overwhelming public debt, the debts of individuals to each other were to be considered; and the alterations in the currency, both the rising it and the sinking it, had been most fatal to the prosperity of the country. The act of 1797 had led to facilities both of cash and of credit; and those facilities had led to speculations, the effects of which were apparent in our Gazette. It was not to traders that such speculations had been confined. Professional men had been tempted to adventure—men who would never have dreamt of speculation, had the currency remained in its natural and healthy state. But, foremost in the ranks of adventurers, had stood the agricultural interest, whose names were excluded from the list of bankrupts, but whose distress was apparent, from signs which could not be mistaken. To those very speculations of the agriculturists part of the present distress was attributable. Their profits tempted the chancellor of the Exchequer: their exertions had a tendency to overproduction; and with all this went on a facility of contracting debts, which, under any other state of the currency, they would not have incurred, if they could, and which they could not have contracted even had they been so disposed. It was said, that the land-owners had flourished under that depreciation of the currency, while all the other interests of the country had been suffering—that the farmers had benefited by high prices, which crushed the trader and manufacturer. But the manufacturer had the means of evading those high prices, by the mass of machinery which he substituted for human labour. The cotton-machinery was so improved within the last thirty years, chiefly in consequence of high prices and taxation, that one man produced now one hundred times as much as he had produced formerly. It was not so with the agriculturist. The improvements in farming had certainly been considerable; but a man could not produce a hundred times as much as he had produced formerly. Nor was the gain during those years of high prices so completely one way as had been assumed. Whilst the farmers were speculating in land, other classes speculated in money; and the power of speculation accrued equally to both, from the state of the revenue and the condition of the currency. The farmer was charged with having made exclusive benefit. Let it be remembered, that every man who had at one time lent government 50l. was now a creditor to the amount of 100l. That millions and hundreds of millions had been borrowed, and sometimes as low as 48 or 49. He knew that the3 per cents. had been as low as 47½; and he was sure many loans had been made as low as from 50 to 60, others between 60 and 70; and no smaller an amount than 300,000,000l. had been borrowed during those years of depreciation. All those loans had now risen from 30 to 50 per cent.; fir the creditor could not be paid off unless by giving him his 100l.; and so tar, at least, others besides the farmers had made their profit out of the distresses of the country. He hoped he should not be mistaken. He was far from meaning to state the fact invidiously; but it ought not to be said, that all the gain of the expensive years had fallen exclusively to the share of the agriculturists. If the loss was not entirely upon the monied man, neither was the profit entirely with the farmer. If the article in which the farmer dealt had risen, his rent had risen with it. Then he had himself, as a consumer and a purchaser of labour, been affected by his own high prices. Then, too, he had enjoyed all the blessings of the income-tax, pursuing the increase of his nominal gains. The fiends of the exchequer were up with him at every step; and they diminished his advantages at least, if they could not seize them altogether. Nor was this the whole. The debts which a depreciated currency had stimulated him to incur, he was now compelled to pay by selling at low prices. With an income nominally reduced, he had to pay the same amount of fixed money which he had borrowed from his creditors. Suppose a man to have an income of 10,000l. a year, arising from his rents, 5,000l. of which was to go in fixed money payments. If rents fell fifty per cent., which was the case with many landholders at the present time, that man's income was entirely gone. If rents fell 25 per cent., which was perhaps the minimum at the present moment, half his income was gone in the same way. So that, instead of being a man of 10,000l. a year, he was in reality a man of only 2,500l. Having now returned to the old system of currency, the first mode of alleviating the misery of the farmer was, to relieve him from the taxes by which he was oppressed. Still, in defiance of all retrenchment and all economy, much of public burden would necessarily remain: and he had no hesitation in saying, that if, after all the resources of economy were exhausted—if after every possible reduction had been effected—if after a large amount of load was taken off, the country should still find the state of the farming interest so bad, that landed gentlemen could not continue to exist in such a state of things, he was not prepared to say that the country ought not to go still farther in relief. His decided opinion upon the subject was, that where the pressure was so great and the interest so mighty—for the very existence of the state was bound up in the prosperity of the land—the country had only one limit to relief—the making that relief decidedly effectual—that if one measure of reduction would not do, recourse must be had to another, and from thence to another; and that if all reductions were found insufficient, the country must prepare for other measures, for measures only to be justified by a paramount unreasoning necessity. [Loud Cheers.] To tamper with the public faith; to sully the honour of the country; to declare a national bankruptcy!—Good God! who in his senses could recommend it?—To raise the denomination of the currency higher? That was a gentler form of speech; but it amounted pretty nearly to the same thing. To attack the standard secretly or openly? Acts differing only from each other, as open violence differed from secret fraud. He did not say that the country ought to make up its mind easily to such a course; for it was one thing to have kept the currency where it was a few years ago, and another thing, having reestablished it, again to alter the standard. Many persons would have agreed to keep the currency down, where it would have been to the great and equitable relief of the country, if it had remained, who would not now agree to retrace their steps, and to change the state of things once more. And with cause; for the thing itself would be worse, and the example would be ten thousand times worse, as it would be easier to follow it in cases of future difficulty. But necessity—if necessity did come—if that hour did arrive, when there was no possibility of negociation, whose mandate was peremptory and must instantly be obeyed! and he should say that the hour of necessity was come, if the landowners of England were to continue permanently in the state, or in any thing like the state, in which they now stood: for it was well to talk, in honied accents, of suiting the supply to the demand, and throwing bad land out of cultivation—of changes in society, from one employment to another—of transfer (for that was an expression which did wonders), and of what one man lost being gained by another. These words—however smoothly they might sound upon the tongue, would be found, if interpreted, full of serious and of dangerous meaning. They supposed the laying waste of a large and fair proportion of England—the breaking up of all endearing connexions; the destruction of all local attachments—the most frightful agonies to which the human mind could be subjected. They looked to the tearing up by the roots that fabric of society which might flourish perhaps in this country, most ornamentally towards its summit, but which was bottomed upon the foundation of a solid landed interest, and which must crumble into dust when that landed interest should be no more. And he said that the landed interest was no more, when proprietors were reduced to traffic in securities—when they were compelled, from day to day, to a life of traffic and of speculation, instead of living like country gentlemen, and gentlemen of England. To be distressed by every little neighbour within sight of his gate; to be fearful at the approach of every new comer; to glean a scanty pittance of rent from a tenantry, as suffering as themselves; and at last having gleaned from that tenantry all their earnings, to be forced to come upon their savings; and, their savings being exhausted, to be obliged to drive them out or sell them up, taking the rent (as it was now taken) out of the farmer's capital, and not out of his revenue; and then being forced to mortgage and eventually to sell; then the process of transfer, as it was called, became complete; and, instead of the former owners, a new race of proprietors were distributed through the country. To that conclusion the thing must, after all, come. Persons talked of the ruin of the landed interest: but it was not meant to say that proprietors would be destroyed: that the land would become steril or sink in the sea, or that the houses would be levelled, and the owners exterminated. No: what was to be understood by the ruin of a great class, and by the destruction of one of the most commanding interests in the country, was shortly this—a great change of property; much individual misery; the whole relations of the class destroyed; or the relations of that class to the rest of society, and those of its members to each other. Such was what was called the destruction of a class: and when it happened to a community, it became the destruction of a state. [Cheers.] Once more then, if economy was not found effectual, parliament was bound to do that which would be effectual; for, at all events and at all hazards, it was their duty to save the state. God forbid, that any man should even whisper such an expedient as that, from which every well-constituted mind must recoil, the compounding with the public creditor, or the tampering with the currency—while parliament possessed the power of relieving the existing distress, by a diminution of taxation, and by the enforcement of economy! He said, therefore, that the only measure of mitigating the great evil which at present oppressed society was, to reduce, by every expedient, the burdens of taxation. This was to he done by real and efficient retrenchment, not by lopping off the salaries of petty clerks, and by little jobs of that kind, such as consolidating a few clerkships in one, to serve the dependant of some great man. It was not by petty unjust savings of this kind that real retrenchment was to be effected—but by beginning at the highest and going down to the lowest salaries, till every class of the state was included. He hoped they would not be any longer told, that public men were not to be borne bard upon, when it was the fact that they were the only class who had not suffered enormously. [Cheers.] He would not say whether they ought to be reduced 15 or 20 per cent.; but they ought to be reduced in such a proportion as would be likely to give efficient relief to the suffering classes of the community. He had looked into the papers on the table with respect to the reduction; he did not make any reference to this year or to the one million and a half to be deducted, half a million of which was to be attributed to the death of Buonaparte, and another regretted event—the lamented death of the queen. The document to which he was about to refer contained the changes which had taken place in the salaries of public officers from the year 1792 to the present time. To show how impossible it was to repose confidence in men, who said that they had brought the expenditure of the country as low as it could be brought, be would refer in the first place, to the papers of last year. He found in one place an account of offices abolished, or said to be abolished, at the expiration of the Income tax; and in that department, it appeared, that places were cut off to the amount of 1,500l. a year. Now, according to Mr. Perceval's act, persons retiring after a long employment from public offices, were allowed a retiring pension, according to the length of their service, Those who had served twenty years, retired upon one half their salary; those who had served thirty years, took two thirds; and forty years, three fourths, and so on. Now, it might fairly be doubted, whether persons whose offices were abolished stood entitled to such large allowances as those who retired from age or infirmity; but, at all events, if the liberality of ministers was to give to those persons the full benefit of the act in question, it might reasonably have been expected that they would not have gone beyond it. How did the fact stand? Simply thus—the offices abolished amounted to 1,500l. a year. The saving to the public by that abolition was 300l. But he would show that within the last few years, augmentation rather than diminution of stipend had been going on; or that they had been marching hand in hand, the one at least as operative as the other. The years 1815 and 1816 had been years of low prices and of affected economy; and the year 1816, one would have thought, of all the years in the circle, was the farthest from warranting an increase of salary. And yet, he found the commissioners of Customs and of Excise, and the chairmen of those boards, in the year 1816, endowed with an addition to their already considerable stipend. At a time when, instead of adding any thing, part ought to have been taken away, these increases were given, as compensations for loss of patronage. Two or three yachts had been laid up, the nomination of officers to them ceased; and that was a calamity to be made up by an increase of salary! But the taste of ministers in these matters was quite delightful, as well as the neatness, the uniformity which their arrangements displayed: for, to preserve the symmetry of the whole set of offices, the commissioners of Stamps got the same increase of salary, although they had lost no patronage at all. [A member here said, that the commissioners of Stamps had lost some patronage.] He could not but be delighted at the style in which these rights were asserted, and at the nicety with which the worth of patronage was estimated in money. But there was another instance of augmentation in the year 1817, which was really worthy the attention of the House: it was, to the salary of the secretary of the board of control. The original salary attached to that situation was 1,500l. a year. It was thought, however, that 1,500l. a year was too little for an office of such importance, and in 1813 or 1814, 300l. a year was added, making the salary 1,800l. Within two years after, to wit in the yeas 1815, it was discovered that the hon. member who dignified the office had beer no less than five years in possession of his situation. Conduct so praiseworthy conk not decently go unrewarded. If such an act did not deserve remuneration, what did? If it was not merit who could hope to be meritorious? Five years in his post! It was a signal instance of that propensity to keep place, which was the support of ministers, and the blessing of the country! [Much laughter.] "Let his salary," said ministers with one voice—"be increased 200l. a year." And for the hon. secretary's religious adherence to office, and as an encouragement to him to persevere still further in the same virtuous course, his salary, from 1,800l. was raised to 2,000l. per annum. So bright a reward for meritorious conduct could scarcely fail to produce the best effects: and in fact, the honourable secretary continued two years longer in office, to evince his gratitude for the bounty which had been showered upon him. What! two years more? he must be rewarded again [shouts of laughter]—or the state will go to decay for want of steady servants! It would be in vain to have great places of 1,500l. and 2,000l. a year, if they did not reward fidelity like this! Accordingly, the salary was advanced 200l. a year more, attaining then—it was hard to say the maximum—but attaining the line upon which it rested just at present. After retrenchment promised to the House and to the country; after pledges of retrenchment year after year carried up to the Throne: and after a direct report from the committee of finance, recommending that no such augmentations to salaries should be made, "because the committee thought the principle was liable to abuse," such was the course that ministers had taken. The very instance which had just been quoted proved, that the words of the finance committee had been prophetic; but if the country wished to continue as a nation at all—if she was to be raised, or attempted to be raised from bankruptcy and from ruin, the scale of her expenditure must be in reality reduced. What were the plans to which other gentlemen looked forward, it was not for him to say; he trusted only that among all the persons to whom he was now speaking there was no individual who would lend an ear to relieving the distresses of the landed interest by increasing in any way the facility of borrowing. Whether that borrowing was to be from government directly, so as to subject the farmers to the only curse with which they were not yet afflicted—Exchequer process; or whether it was to come through any intermediate channel, it would turn out to be an aggravation rather than a mitigation of the evil. He warned them, for he had heard portentous reports, against opening their ears to any proposition for changing the taxes, or for shifting the burthen from one set of sufferers to another. Such a measure, let land-owners be assured, would afford them, even at the present moment, very slight relief; and would tend most inevitably to the revival of the income-tax. Let the country profit by the experience of former years; let the people recollect the manner in which the income-tax had been introduced, the almost imperceptible degrees by which it had grown up, and the curse which it had eventually become! Let those who had groaned under that precious impost beware, now they had got rid of it, how they opened a door to its return! Let them judge, if the chancellor of the Exchequer once more got his foot upon that chosen ground, if he would ever abandon it until he had drained them of their last shilling. However light the pressure might first appear, it would soon be severely and oppressively felt:— Parva metu primo: mox sese attolit in auras, Ingrediturque solo." If they looked to the returns of what the landed interest had paid, and considered the many burthens with which they were at present oppressed, it would be evident that such a tax, however modified, was one which they could not endure. But his objection was not merely to the unequal pressure of taxation which would be thus produced, but to the enormous glut which would be thereby given to the grossest extravagance. From all he had heard, not from ministers, but from those adherents who too much countenanced them, he felt he should not be discharging his duty if he did not guard members against those visionary schemes by which it was proposed to aid the distressed lasses—schemes, visionary in every thing from which real relief could be expected, and substantial in nothing but in their being a bar to a practical reduction of taxation.

In concluding his observations, which he feared had been already too many, he begged again to state, in order to guard Himself against any misconstruction, that there was nothing in the resolution which be was about to submit, that would pledge any member to any particular kind of reduction or retrenchment. Those who still maintained the foolish and extravavant idea, that a sinking fund, such as ours ought to be supported, might still vote for his resolution, because there was nothing in it which directly militated against that system. Those who opposed that system as one, the deception and fallacy of which had already been exposed, might also vote with him without any violation of political feeling. All that the resolution said was, that a reduction of taxation was necessary to the relief of the country; and, therefore, all the gentlemen who were of opinion (and he had reason to believe that many hon. members in that House thought with him at least) might all give their votes with him in safety. The only persons whose votes be could not ask, whose votes he could not expect, were those who imagined that there was another nostrum more efficacious than the remedy which he proposed;—who imagined that the taxes, and those who lived by the taxes, were a benefit to the country—who imagined, with the chancellor of the Exchequer that a reduction would be a serious and crying evil to society. The hon. and learned member concluded, amidst loud cheers, by moving "That it is the bounden duty of this House, well-considering the pressure of Public Burthens upon all, but especially the Agricultural Classes, to obtain for the suffering People of these Realms such a reduction of the taxes as may be suited to the change in the value of money, and may afford an immediate relief to the distresses of the Country."

The Marquis of Londonderry

said, that in rising to address the House after the long, the able, and elaborate speech of the hon. and learned member, he could assure them, that if he felt convinced of the truth of the proposition which had been laid down (in no very practical or intelligible shape he must admit), he would at once accede to it. The hon. and learned member had certainly a right to propose the reduction of the expenditure, and the introduction of economy, to the utmost farthing; as such a proposition would be of course submitted to the good sense and discernment of the House. But he must condemn and set his face against tire cloaked and mysterious terms in which the hon. and learned member had hinted at the measures to which the landed interests were to look for protection. He felt pleased and gratified at being relieved from the necessity of following the hon. and learned member through all the florid declamation with which he had favoured the House, or of removing from their minds the horrors which that declamation was calculated to inspire. When the hon. and learned member could convince that House that die reductions which he proposed could be made without any injury to the state, then, and not till then, could his proposed plan be put in execution. In looking to the extensive range, and lengthened detail of argument, into which the hon. and learned member had gone, he could assure those who heard him, that if, in the course of that argument, any practical remedy which could be supported by sense or reason had been submitted to him, he would not have opposed it; nor ought he, perhaps, to have immediately followed the hon. and learned member in what he had proposed, for he had the honour of sitting amongst gentlemen who were much better able to detect and expose the fallacies of that hon. and learned member than he could pretend to be. But that was not now the question. The question to be considered was, what was the situation in which the hon. and learned member had placed himself, the House (for not even the I-louse itself had escaped his lash), and the country, by the present motion. Were they to follow implicitly the doctrines of the hon. and learned gentleman? Were they at once to pin their faith on what had been advanced by him? No: they must look to all the circumstances of the case; they must take within their view the various interests of the country; and after having so done, it would be their duty to adopt such measures as in their wisdom they deemed most effective in affording relief. In coming to a decision upon this question, he was sure that gentlemen would discharge their duty faithfully to themselves, their constituents, and to posterity. He should now proceed to touch upon some of the leading topics of the hon. and learned member's speech: and here he must observe, that if the hon. and learned member had felt satisfied that the distresses he described existed, and that the remedy he proposed was absolutely necessary, then that hon. and learned member should not have arraigned the conduct of government in entering into the last war; he should not have endeavoured to throw out calumnies, not only against ministers but against parliament itself; he should have kept in view the public interests and the public interests only; and, above all, be should have trusted something to persons who, from their official situations, were likely to be better informed as to the details of the situation of the country than the hon. member was likely to be. But the hon. and learned member had not done this: nay, so anxious were he and his friends upon the subject, that they were prepared on the opening of parliament—upon the first hearing of the address, to call for the final decision of the House upon this great question—a question which involved the first and dearest interests of the country, and entangled as it was by a variety of considerations. He should here point out the difference between his own conduct and that of the hon. and learned member upon this occasion. The hon. and learned member endeavoured to press, or he would say entrap the House, into a premature decision upon the question; while he (lord L.) felt that he should be guilty of a dereliction of duty as a minister of the Crown, if he proposed for their decision a question of such grave and vital importance, without giving time for the fullest and most serious consideration. The hon. and learned member, however, would have the decided opinions of the House delivered at once upon this great question. But this was not all. The hon. and learned member had found fault with the last war; and particularly with the expenditure of the last three years of that war. He would ask the hon. and learned gentleman, he would ask the House, whether this was a proper period at which to introduce such a question? He would call upon them to recollect, that during a part of that war, the gentlemen opposite were as ready to grant supplies as ministers were to ask for them? And he should say, without fear of contradiction, that it was owing to the expenditure, that this country owed the proud situation which she now held among the nations of Europe. The hon. and learned member had also attacked the finance committee of 1817, and had described them as persons entirely subservient to ministers. Now he would put it to the House whether this was dealing fairly with those gentlemen: He would put it to those who heard him, whether that committee did not consist of gentlemen of as honourable and as independent character as any to be found, either in that House or the country. But it was one thing to devise and carry on measures during a period of danger and difficulty, and another to find fault when those dangers and difficulties were overcome. The hon. and learned member had talked of the estimates, and of their enormous amount during the war; but were those to be coolly calculated in moments when the honour of the British arms was engaged? Was the duke of Wellington, in drawing up the lines at Torres Vedras, to calculate the estimates of his expenses, and suspend his operations until those estimates could he discussed in parliament? Had such been the practice of that great captain, the country would not have had to record so many glorious achievements of her armies under his command. But, when estimates, and their pressure upon the country were talked of, let it be remembered, that the fever for military glory, as it was called, was not all on the ministerial side of the House. He recollected well that a main support was given to those military measures from the other side; and he also recollected, that not a word was said about the amount of those estimates when the enemy was at Boulogne, and we were fortifying the heights at Dover. At that time an hon. member, general Craufurd, who sat on the opposite benches, was, night alter night, ringing in their ears the necessity of some stronger measures for the defence of the country. Mr. Windham, too, a gentleman for whose memory he had the greatest respect, was an advocate, and a warm one, for strong military measures; and the system was canonized soon after by his being made war-minister. And when the learned gentleman talked of the increase of millions in our estimates, he should recollect that a great part of them were increased by Mr. Windham's plan for increasing the pay and limiting the service in the army; and that some of the millions talked of might have been saved but for that plan to which the hon. and learned gentleman himself had given his support. Another exaggeration of the hon. and learned member was, that we had the same degree of taxation in peace as in war; but did the hon. and learned member not take into account, that at the close of the war we had reduced taxation to the amount of 18 millions—a relief which no country in Europe could boast at the time. He mentioned these points to recal to the attention of the House the spirit of crimination and exaggeration in which the hon. and learned member had indulged. Now what was the situation of the House with respect to this question? The Speech from the throne announced the distresses of the country; and his majesty threw himself on his parliament, on that momentous subject. Now, he put it to the House, whether, in the address on that speech, his majesty could have got any conclusive answer on that point? Whether, in two or three days, the House could have come to any practical conclusion upon so important a question? On the occasion of voting the address, he had distinctly stated, that ministers would at a very early day be prepared to lay before parliament a statement of what they intended to propose, and that the subjects upon which they would touch would become matters of separate discussion. They did not wish to take credit for any thing which was not then fully made known; and at the same time he stated, that no member would be pledged by the vote which he gave on that occasion, to the support of any of the measures which might be subsequently brought forward. So he would now say, and by supporting the previous question, with which he should feel it his duty to meet the hon. and learned member's motion, no member would be precluded from supporting any measure of reduction which might he proposed hereafter. By moving the previous question, he meant not to say, that the subject which the hon. and learned gentleman had proposed might not be discussed hereafter; but merely that the present was not the proper time for the introduction. All he claimed was, that the House should not decide, until they had the whole subject fully before them. He would have them enter into the consideration of such important matters with all that light upon them which would be calculated to direct them to a just conclusion. He did not mean to deny, that instances might be shown in which parliament would be justified in retracing some of its steps: but surely the House were not to be told that they were to come to such a conclusion on a single speech, without data to go upon, and without time for the fullest consideration. All then, that he called upon the House to do, was, to wait till that opportunity should arrive. He was prepared to go as far as the hon. and learned gentleman in valuing those sound principles of economy which ought to guide a government; but then he would not allow himself to be borne along by declamatory statements about a mysterious necessity, to which we were to bow. He would say, that we should not bow to any necessity—he meant alleged necessity, for he did not admit that any real necessity existed, which should induce parliament to violate the faith of the country, or to infringe upon those principles of eternal justice on which its engagements should depend. He would not at the present moment allow himself so far to anticipate the plans which his majesty's ministers would submit to the consideration of parliament, as to say what would be a relief to the distress which prevailed; though he would say, that in considering the distress, he did not mean to deny that there would be some alleviation of taxation; but that whatever it might be, it would arise from collateral circumstances, which would afford a more solid guarantee of relief than those plans which the hon. and learned member seemed to contemplate. He could not, however, go at that moment into the detail of the particular measures, without improperly introducing that which would better appear at another period. Surely the hon. and learned member, if he wished the House to come to a right conclusion on the subjects he had introduced, would not have hurried them in the manner he had done! The present motion of the hon. and learned member was indeed nothing more than an attempt, by a party vote, to cast a censure on ministers, and to withdraw from them that confidence which they possessed. For he put it to the House—he put it to the hon. and learned gentleman bimself—whether, without reference to our income and expenditure, without any knowledge of what ministers intended to propose, it could have any other object? He would say, if such was the intention of the hon. member—if the House should choose to go with him in withdrawing their confidence from the ministers—why then it would he better at once that some others should be chosen, in order, before the House came to any decision upon the question of reduction, they might be informed of what was intended to be done. If the House should concur with the hon. and learned gentleman, he would say, let him take charge of the administration, and have access to those documents which were now in the possession of ministers; and, having those papers in one pocket, and the vote of the House in the other, let him then judge whether it would be prudent to come to any decision upon such a subject without a reference to those documents. But if, as he had just said, the House should be of opinion that the hon. and learned gentleman and his friends should be placed in the situation which the present ministers now filled, which, he would admit, were objects of fair ambition to every man in the country—if the hon. and learned gentleman should, as no doubt he would, be appointed to some high trust—that of Chancellor of the Exchequer, or, some other of equal importance, his first object in coming down to that House would be—for he would not believe him rash enough to be bound by what he had said that night—to implore them not to rush at once to a decision upon such a subject as the present, but to suspend their opinions until he could lay the proper documents before them. But, the object of the hon. and learned gentleman was not to bring the House to a decision on these points. He had embraced the present opportunity of making a party attack. The hon. and learned member had been recently elevated to a high situation among his party; for if the rumour of the few last days were true, he had been raised to that trust which the public supposed to reside in the hon. member for Aberdeen. He did not mean to say that that hon. member was not well qualified for the task, or had entirely given it up; perhaps he would act while the hon. and learned gentleman was going circuit. The present was, as be had observed, quite a party question: but it was one well calculated to mislead those for whom it was intended. He trusted, however, that this premature attempt would be met with a rebuke similar to that with which a like motion, made by a right hon. gentleman opposite (Mr. Tierney) on a former occasion was received, when another party question was raised m the state of the nation. He hoped the good sense of the House would induce them to treat this as the former one had been treated. He would not trespass farther on their attention. He had stated the reasons which induced him to meet this motion with the previous question. On the proper occasion he would show that the system of relief to be proposed by government would be far better calculated to effect that object, and particularly the relief of the agricultural classes, than the plans to which the hon. and learned gentleman had alluded. When this system should be opened to the House, no member would be pledged to vote upon it until time had been afforded for its fullest consideration; for there was nothing against which he protested more strongly, than the endeavouring to procure a conclusion on an important question by prejudices excited in the absence of full information on the subject. He hoped the House would set itself against any such attempts. Ministers, he could assure them, were prepared to adhere to every principle of economy, and when he mentioned the word economy, he begged to be understood as meaning rational economy. In a short time the House would have to consider the whole situation of the country with reference to its income and expenditure. They would then see what reductions had been made, and what farther, if any, could be made with safety to the public service. This was, he thought, the only fair way of coming to a rational conclusion, and the very reverse of the one adopted by the hon. and learned member. Protesting against his plan as impracticable, and, he would say, as unparliamentary, he would conclude with moving the previous question.

Mr. Calcraft

said, that those classes of the community who were in distress, would no doubt feel much surprised when they learned, that instead of considering those distresses, ministers were considering the situation of gentlemen at the Opposition side of the House, with reference to their own. The noble lord seemed astonished that such a motion should have been introduced in the absence of full information as to the intentions and plans of ministers. Now, he contended, that a sufficient knowledge of their intentions existed on which to found a motion, and exactly such a motion as that proposed by his hon. and learned friend. That motion was rendered necessary by the declaration, made on the very first night of the session by the chancellor of the Exchequer, not only that there was to be no reduction of taxation, but that such a reduction would rather aggravate than relieve the public distresses. After such a statement coming from one of the ministers, and fairly presumed to be the opinion of all, it was the duty of the House to take the earliest opportunity of corning to a resolution, binding ministers to a reduction of taxes as the only effectual remedy for the public distress. He was quite surprised to hear from the noble lord, an assertion, that the late Mr. Windham's plan was the cause of a vast increase of our taxes, and a dead weight of some millions upon the country. But the fact was not so: Mr. Windharn's plan was, an extension of half-pay in certain cases; but it was not this necessary encouragement to meritorious exertions which had created the burden: it was the extension of the principle to the navy and artillery which had produced it: but he would say, that never was money paid by the public, better deserved, than that which went to reward the great and meritorious efforts of the class of men to whom he alluded, and it was too much in the noble lord who had availed himself of those services to complain of the weight of their reward. The noble lord, grudged this application of the public money, but he made no lamentation over the different jobs which his hon. friend had exposed; he made no lamentation over the increase of pay to certain officers, who had no increase of duty to perform; he made no lamentation over the secretary of the Board of Control raising his own salary from 1,500l. to 2,000l. a-year, when he had not the misfortune to be disbanded with his fellows. He requested the House would consider what it was the noble lord had proposed to them: he had entreated them to vote for the previous question, because on Friday next he intended to bring forward his proposition for the relief of the agricultural distress. If the noble lord was sincere in his intention of relieving the agricultural interest, the assenting to the motion of his hon. and learned friend would favour, instead of interfering with, that object; for it would only pledge the House to the reduction of taxation as one of the means of affording relief. But what confidence could the House place in the noble lord's promises of relief? Had he not in the last session promised that the government would do all that it could to alleviate the agricultural distress? And yet, what had been done to redeem that promise? Why, he had sent all the agricultural petitions to a committee, in which seine of his own most active friends were the principal members, and one of whom had absolutely drawn up the report that was afterwards agreed upon. And what relief had that report brought to them; or what relief did they anticipate from the project on which the noble lord had that evening talked so largely? He put it to the country gentlemen to determine, whether they could entertain any rational expectation of relief at the hands of the noble lord, when he had, on the present occasion, carefully abstained from contradicting the expression of the chancellor of the Exchequer, that no reduction of taxation could take place. If the noble lord had had any intention of reducing taxation, he would have willingly stated that such a measure formed a part of his plan; but as far as he could collect from what the two members of the executive government had said, it was their intention to persist in the heavy taxation by which the country was oppressed. Now let them consider what would be the effect of affirming the proposition of his hon. and learned friend. Would it not be to compel the noble lord to make a reduction of taxation a part of his so much vaunted proposition? He believed the noble lord thought that the resignation of his own office would be a greater evil to the country, than any which it could suffer from the distressed state of agriculture. He believed the noble lord was of opinion that the interests of the nation could not be confided with safety to any other hands than those of himself and his colleagues. But he confidently hoped the House would not entertain a similar opinion. If the present were a fit opportunity for entering into the political merits of the noble lord, he would direct the attention of the House to the present distracted state of Ireland, and would advise it to look there at the fruits of the noble lord's political life. It was there that the noble lord had commenced his career: it was there he had induced the representatives of the nation to abdicate their functions: it was there he had induced them, by large promises of advantage, to accede to the Union; and vet, in the two-and-twenty years which had elapsed since that event, during almost the whole of which he had been in power, what measure to improve Ireland, what plan of policy to ameliorate the condition of its unfortunate inhabitants, had been brought forward? If the noble lord prided himself upon any plan that be had introduced into parliament for that purpose, he had only to look at the present distracted state of that country to divest himself of it. Indeed, if he felt that love for Ireland, which was inherent in every man for the land of his birth, how must he regret that so many years of his administration had been passed amid scenes of continued outrage, oppression, and bloodshed! That the short invervals of peace which had occurred had not been employed, either by himself or by his friends, in endeavouring to amend the degraded situation of his suffering countrymen! The noble lord, with a view of rebutting the illustration which his hon. and learned friend had given of the extravagant expenditure of government during the war, had said, that the expenditure complained of had all accrued from measures supported by the Opposition side of the House; as if, though the noble lord had been in power, his opponents had been the sole directors of the expenditure of the country. The noble lord had stated, that the extravagant suggestions upon which the government afterwards acted, had come from the late Mr. Windham and general Craufurd; but he would ask the noble lord, whether those gentlemen had not always acted in a distinct opposition of their own, and apart from the party to which he and his hon. and learned friend had al ways been attached? In the propriety of these suggestions he had never concurred; and could appeal to his past public conduct, in proof of the accuracy of his statement. If any gentleman would turn to the debates of that period, he would find him opposing the expenditure which was then commenced, night after night, and division after division. He should not have been for pressing this motion upon their attention, had he conceived that it would interfere with a proper consideration of the question of agricultural distress. In that question he was himself deeply interested: with the distress which made it of such importance, he warmly sympathized. With the farmer he went —along, both heart and mind, A fellow-feeling made them wond'rous kind. As he thought that the motion of his hon. and learned friend was calculated to promote their best interests, he should certainly advise him to pledge the House, if possible, to an immediate reduction of taxation.

Mr. Ricardo

denied that taxation was the cause of the present agricultural distress. A country might, he said, be totally without taxes, and yet in the exact situation that England was at present. It was consistent enough in those who thought that the restoration of the currency had made a change of 50 or 56 per cent. in the value of money, and had consequently increased the actual value of the taxes in that proportion, though their nominal amount still remained the same, to say that taxation was the chief cause of the distressed state of agriculture; but it was impossible for those who held that the restoration in the currency had not created any thing like so great a change, to accede to such a statement. From the line of argument which his hon. and learned friend had pursued in one part of his speech, he was afraid that his hon. and learned friend was going to prove, that the very taxation which he wished to reduce was a source of benefit to the nation. His hon. and learned friend had stated, that the manufacturers of leather, on account of the tax on it, largely increased its price to the consumer, and derived so much benefit thereby as to be ready to represent it to parliament as a very useful and beneficial tax. Surely, by a parity of analogy, the agricultural interest, burdened as it was by taxation, might petition parliament against a reduction of it, since it was as much in their power as in that of the leather-manufacturer, to make it useful in enhancing the price of their commodity to the consumer. His hon. and learned friend had, however, drawn a very nice distinction—so nice indeed, that, for his own part, he was not gifted with ability to discern it—between the circumstances in which the leather-manufacturer and those in which the agriculturist was placed. He had said, that, in the case of the manufacturer, the taxation was paid by the consumer; but that in the case of the agriculturist, it was paid by the seller, and could not be charged to the consumer. He could wish his hon. and learned friend had stated to the House his reasons for such an assertion. If he were to be called upon to declare what he conceived the cause of the present depressed state of agriculture, he should say, that the cause of it was the abundance of produce now in hand, arising from the late abundant harvest, the quantity of land recently brought into cultivation, the importation of corn from Ireland, and various other causes, which it was not material for him at that time to mention. Indeed, the House would deceive both itself and the country, if it should come to a resolution that taxation was the cause of the distresses of the agricultural interest. He perfectly concurred in the opinion of his hon. and learned friend, that the present state of things could not last long: that was an unnatural state of things, in which the farmer could not obtain a remunerative price for his produce, and the landlord could not obtain an adequate rent from his tenant. His hon. and learned friend had stated, that unless something were done to relieve the farmer, much of the land would be thrown out of tillage. He said so too; and it was to that very circumstance that he looked forward as a remedy. His hon. and learned friend, among the other observations which he had made, had made some upon a set of individuals whom he stated to be anxious to transfer the whole landed property of the country into the hands of the public creditor. For his own part, he could not help observing, that he knew of no persons who entertained such wishes; neither could he imagine any cause which could, under such a measure, be necessary. He himself thought that the landholder might be enabled to receive an adequate rent, without any breach of faith being committed towards the stock-holders. With regard to the stock-holders, it might be supposed, from the language which had been used that evening, that it had been proposed to transfer to them the property of the land-holders, and to leave the land-holders entirely without resources. Now, such a proposition never had been, and never could be, seriously propounded. But though he said that, he was prepared to assert, that it would be most advisable, both for the land-holder and stock-holder, that the former should surrender to the latter a part of his property, in liquidation of the debt that had been contracted. Indeed, as the stock-holder received, in the shape of interest, taxes from the landholder, it might be said that a part of the land did at this moment absolutely belong to him. [Cries of "Hear" from both sides of the House.] He would suppose, that during the war the ministers had come into the House, and, after stating the necessity of the case, had called upon the country gentlemen to give up a certain portion of their property in a direct manner to the exigencies of the state. Must they not, in that case, have absolutely parted with a portion of it? And if at that time others advanced for them that capital which they had not in an immediately tangible shape, was it not right that the capital so advanced should now be repaid to them? He was not demanding for the stock-holder more than he was entitled to receive; he was merely demanding that, in a compact such as he had described, the terms should be fairly and honourably fulfilled towards him. If the alteration in the value of the currency had given to the stock-holder more than he was entitled to, which he (Mr. R.) did not believe, let it be shown and let the deduction be made openly and without disguise. These were all the observations which he should obtrude at present upon the House. On a future occasion, he should explain the reasons why he thought that the alteration produced in the value of money by the restoration of the currency, had been greatly over-stated; and then he should endeavour to show, that if proper measures had been taken at the time of passing Mr. Peel's bill, the resumption of cash payments would have produced no greater effect on the price of corn and other agricultural produce, than a fall of five per cent; whatever greater fall might have taken place, would have been attributable to other causes.

Mr. W. Peel

opposed the motion. He believed that ministers were quite as anxious to relieve the distress of the country as those who dealt in nothing but assertion and complaint. He was glad that reductions were about to be made from the highest offices to the lowest, as he was convinced that such economical arrangements would tend to remove the evils complained of.

Mr. Brougham

rose to reply; and principally for the purpose of defending himself against the charge of inconsistency, which the noble marquis had brought against him. The noble marquis had stated that he was not justified in finding fault with the extravagance of our military expenditure, seeing that he had been a party to the propositions of general Craufurd and Mr. Windham, on which it was founded. Now, upon this point the noble marquis was completely in error. The first of the two gentlemen whom the noble marquis had named, he had never seen, much less exchanged a word with; in his life; the latter, much to his regret, he had never been acquainted with, though he had sat for a short time in the same parliament with him. The noble marquis seemed likewise to have forgotten that the suggestions to which he had alluded, were made in the year 1803, seven long years before he (Mr. B.) enjoyed the honour of a seat in parliament. The whole dead weight of the half-pay list, in which was to be included the in and out pensions of Chelsea and Greenwich hospitals, the remuneration to wounded officers, &c. now amounted to 4, 700,000l. This sum the noble marquis had represented as the difference between the half-pay list of 1792, and the half-pay list of the last year; a difference which he likewise stated to be caused by the adoption of the plans suggested by the late Mr. Windham. Such an exaggeration was so preposterous, that it would be a waste of words to expose it. The noble marquis had likewise said, that the House might perceive how paltry was the relief to be expected from a reduction of taxation, by reverting to the small practical benefit conferred upon the country by repealing 18,000,000l. of war taxes in the year 1816. But he would ask the noble marquis and the House this one question: Supposing the House had not compelled the ministers to repeal those taxes, what would have been the condition in which the country would now have been plunged Would it, or would it not, have been unable to pay them? He boldly said that it would have been unable; and he would shortly state the reasons why. The alteration of the currency, by increasing the value of money, had produced the same effect upon the country as if, 23,000,000l. had been added to its taxation; and that rise in the value of money had placed a heavier burden upon it than had been taken away by the taxes which had been repealed. If in addition to the weight of taxes under which the people of England were now groaning, they had to support the weight of those 18,000,000l. of taxes to which the noble lord had alluded, increased as they would have been in value, though stationary in amount, it would be absurd in any man to deny the impos- sibility of the country supporting so intolerable a load. The statement of the noble lord served, therefore, instead of injuring, the argument which he (Mr. B.) had used. As to the objections which his hon. friend (Mr. Ricardo) had adduced against his arguments; fns hon. friend had stated, that from his argument upon the leather-tax he had been afraid that he (Mr. B.) was intending to prove that taxation was a benefit. Now that really was not a fair inference from what he had stated; and when he heard his hon. friend draw it, he could only account for it by supposing that he had listened with so much attention to the speech of the noble marquis, as to have become infected at least with a jocose spirit of misrepresentation by which that speech had been so greatly distinguished. The reason that he had given why some parties interested in the leather trade were anxious to have the tax on leather continued, was of the following nature:—He had supposed them to be deliberating on the policy of repealing that tax, and he had put into their mouths that language which on a recent occasion, they had actually used. "We are large capitalists," said they, "and if you take off the tax on leather you will allow men with small capitals to compete with us; and by so doing you will deprive us of the benefit which we now derive from the extent of our own." That was the case in the leather-trade, and would also be so in agriculture, if they could find agriculturists with capitals so large as to be able to drive the small capitalists out of the market. The hon. member then proceeded to comment upon the manner, in which the noble marquis had called upon the country gentlemen to vote for the previous question. Tae noble marquis had told them that he would not call upon them to negative his (Mr. B's.) proposition on the present occasion, because it they did not like that which he himself intended to submit to their notice on Friday next, they might then move it as an amendment. No sooner, however, had that expression escaped him, than he recollected that there might be something serious in it; for it might happen that the country gentlemen, finding Ins plan to be no plan, and his relief not entitled to be called by that name, might then affirm the proposition which he had that evening endeavoured to get rid of by the previous question.: So the noble marquis immediately set about preparing another string to his bow. "I'll put off," said he, "the decision on this famous plan of mine a little longer, rather than let the country gentlemen have an opportunity of coming so early in the session to a decision on the question of reduction or no reduction of taxes. I will tell them to take as much time as they please, and not to make a hasty decision upon it." Thus, by foul means or fair means, by wheedling one part or menacing another, by joking with a third, or threatening a fourth that he will resign—that ultimunz supplicium which he reserved for his followers—the noble marquis trusted that he should be able to postpone for some time the evil day upon which taxation must inevitably be reduced. The threat of resignation was the whip with which the noble lord used to flog up the sinking spirits of his adherents, whenever he was hard pressed-on the subject of retrenchment, or whenever he saw that the feeling of the country was producing an effect on its representatives, or at least on those who ought to be its representatives. In all such cases, the noble marquis held out the threat of resignation, which spread mighty alarm among his dependents, but not the slightest amongst the mass of his countrymen. He did not know how the present motion would be decided; but in whatever way it might be decided, be was quite sure that the noble lord would not carry his threat of resignation into effect. He offered it as a topic of consolation to the noble lord's trembling adherents, that the present minority, if the noble lord should be so unfortunate as to be in one, would not be the first in which he had stood: and though on the former occasion he had said, that such a circumstance might lead him to throw up his employments, there he still sat on the Treasury bench in full possession of them all. He must confess that in the face of such threats as the noble marquis had held out to the country gentlemen, he had not much expectation of their votes. To remind them, however, of what their duty was, he should simply state that every gentleman who voted for the previous question must either believe that the reduction of taxes was an ingredient in the noble marquis's plan, or must hold himself up to the country as the enemy, and the efficient enemy, of a reduction of taxation.

The previous question being put, the House divided: Ayes 108. Noes 212.

Majority against Mr. Brougham's motion 104.

List of the Minority; and also of the Majority.
Abercromby, hon. J. Macdonald, Jas.
Althorp, visct. Madocks, Wm.
Beaumont, T. W. Marjoribanks, S.
Barham, J. F. jun. Markham, admiral
Baring, sir T. Martin, John
Baring, Henry Monck, J. B.
Barnard, lord Moore, Peter
Bernard, visct. Neville, hon. R.
Benett, John Newport, sir J.
Benyon, Benjamin Nugent, lord
Bernal, R. Ossulston, lord
Brougham, Henry Palmer, C. F.
Burdett, sir F. Pares, Thos.
Byng, George Pelham, hon. C. A.
Boughey, sir T. F. Phillips, G. jun.
Burrell, sir C. Price, Robert
Burrell, W. Portman, E. B.
Bentinck, lord W. Ricardo, D.
Carter, John Robarts, A.
Calvert, C. Robarts, Geo.
Calvert, N. Robinson, sir G.
Clifton, lord Rowley, sir W.
Coffin, sir I. Russell, lord John
Crespigny, sir W. Rice, T. S.
Crompton, S. Rickford, W.
Curwen, J. C. Smith, hon. R.
Creevey, Thos. Smith, G.
Calthorpc, hon. F. Smith, W.
Curteis, E. Smith, Abel
Davies, T. H. Scarlett, J.
Denison, W. Sefton, earl
Dundas, Chas. Scott, James
Davenport, D. Stanley, lord
Ebrington, visc. Stuart, lord J.
Ellice, Ed. Sykes, Dan.
Fergusson, sir R. C. Tennyson, C.
Fitzgerald, lord W. Titchfield, marq.
Fitzroy, lord J. Tavistock, marq.
Frankland, R. Whitmore, T. W.
Farrand, R. White, Luke
Fane, John Whitbread, W.
Grattan, J. Whitbread, S.
Graham, S. Wilkins, W.
Gurney, Richard Williams, T. P.
Hamilton, lord A. Williams, W.
Haldimand, Wm. Winnington, sir T.
Heathcote, G. J. Wood, M.
Heron, sir Robt. Wyvill, M.
Hill, lord A. Wilson, sir Robert
Hobhouse, J. C. TELLERS.
Honywood, W. P. Calcraft, J.
Hume, Joseph Duncannon, lord
Hurst, Robt. PAIRED OFF.
Hutchinson, hon. C. H. Scudamore, R. P.
James, W. SHUT OUT.
Jervoise, G. P. Birch, Joseph
Lemon, sir W. Bennet, hon. H. G.
Lennard, T. B. Browne, Dom.
Lawley, F. Cavendish, H.
Leake, W. Cavendish, C.
Maberly, W, L. Lambtonf J. G.
A'Court, E. H. Dundas, rt. hon. W.
Alexander, J. Evelyn, Lindon
Arbuthnot, rt. hon. C. Egerton, W.
Ashurst, W. Eastnor, visct.
Astley, sir J. Fane, Vere
Atwood, M. Fetherstone, sir G.
Balfour, John Fleming, John
Bankes, Henry Fleming, John
Bankes, George Forbes, C.
Bastard, E. P. Ford, Matthew
Bathurst, rt. hon. C. Forrester, Francis
Bentinck, lord F. Fynes, Henry
Binning, lord Gascoyne, Isaac
Blair, J. H. Gifford, sir R.
Bourne. rt. hon. W. S. Gilbert, D. G.
Bridges, G. Gladstone, John
Broadhead, T. H. L. Gooch, T. S.
Brogden, J. Gordon, hon. W.
Browne, rt. hon. D. Gossett, W.
Browne, P. Grant, A. C.
Buchanan, J. Graves, lord
Burgh, sir U. Grenfell, Pascoe
Butterworth, Jos. Greville, hon. sir C.
Buxton, J. J. Handley, Henry
Cholmondeley, lord H. Hardinge, sir H.
Calvert, John Hart, G. V.
Cecil, lord Thos. Harvey, sir E.
Chamberlayne, W. Harvey, C.
Cheere, E. M. Hawkins, sir C.
Cherry, G. H. Heygate, alderman
Cholmondeley, sir M. Hill, sir G.
Clarke, hon. C. B. Hill, Rowland
Clements, hon. J. M. Holford, G. P.
Clive, visct. Holmes, W.
Clive, hon. R. Hope, sir W.
Clive, Henry Hotham, lord
Cockburn, sir G. Howard, hon. F. G. H.
Cocks, hon. J. S. Hudson, H.
Cole, sir C. Huskisson, rt. hon. W.
Collett, E. J. Innes, John
Cooper, R. B. Jenkinson, hon. C.
Chandos, marq. of Jolliffe, W. G. H.
Coote, sir C. Irving, John
Copley, sir J. S. King, sir J. D.
Corbett, P. Kinnersley, W. S.
Courtenay, T. P. Knatchbull, sir Ed.
Cranborne, visct. Knox, hon. Thos.
Crawley, Sam. Lamb, hon. Wm.
Croker, J. W. Laseelles, hon. W.
Cumming, G. Leigh, J. H.
Cust, Hon. E. Lethbridge, sir T.
Davis, R. H. Lewis, T. F.
Dawkins, Henry Lindsay, hon. H.
Dawson, G. R. Littleton, Ed.
Dent, John Lloyd, S. J.
Dickinson, Wm. Londonderry, marq. of
Divett, Thos. Lowther, H.
Dobson, John Lushington, S. R.
Doraville, sir C. Lygon, hon. H. B.
Doveton, Gabriel Macnaughten, B. A.
Dowdeswell, J. E. Macqueen, J. P.
Downie, R. Magennis, Rd.
Duncombe, C. Manners, lord C.
Duncombe, W. Manners, lord R.
Drake, T. T. Manning, W.
Mansfield, J. Smith, T. A.
Marryat, Jos. Somerset, lord E.
Martin, sir T. B. Somerset, lord G.
Milks, C. Sotheron, F.
Mitchel, John Stuart, sir John
Money, W. T. Stuart, W.
Morgan, G. G. Strutt, T. H.
Morland, sir S. B. Sumner, G. H.
Mountcharles, lord Taylor, sir H.
Musgrove, sir P. Taylor, G. W.
Neale, sir H. B. Thompson, W.
Needham. hon. F. J. Thynne, lord John
Nightingale, sir M. Townshend, hon. H.
Nugent, sir G. Trench, F.
Nolan, M. Tudway, J. P.
O'Grady, S. Tulk, C. A.
Ommanney, sir F. Twiss, Horace
O'Neil, hon. John Ure, M.
Onslow, Arthur Vansittart, rt. hon. N.
Osborne, sir John Vernon, G.
Palk, sir L. Villiers, rt. hon. John
Palmerston, visc. Wallace, rt. hon. T.
Paxton, W. G. Wall, C. B.
Pearse, John Walker, Joshua
Pechell, sir Thos. Ward, Robt.
Peel, W. Warren, C.
Pellew, hon. P. B. Wells, John
Percy, hon. W. Wellesley, Rd.
Phipps, hon. gen. Wetherell, C.
Pitt, W. M. Western, hon. H. R.
Plumber, John Wigram, Wm.
Pole, sir P. Wilbraham, E. B.
Powell, E. W. Williams, Rt.
Pringle, sir W. Willoughby, H.
Raine, J. Wilmot, Rt.
Rice, hon. G. Wilson, sir H.
Robertson, A. Wilson, Tho.
Robinson, hon. F. Wodehouse, hon. J.
Rowley, sir Josias Wodehouse, hon. E.
Russell, J. Watts Wood, col.
Scott, Sam. Wortley, J. S.
Sheldon, R. Yorke, sir J.
Shiffner, sir G. PAIRED OFF.
Skeffington, hon. T. H. Blake, R.
Smith, R.