HC Deb 28 March 1836 vol 32 cc653-747

Lord John Russell moved the third reading of the Municipal Reform (Ireland) Bill.

Mr. Shaw

said, that considering his connexion with the most important beyond all comparison of the Irish Corporations, and that he had not before troubled the House with any observations on the principle of the Bill, he hoped they would not deem him presumptuous in taking that early part in the night's debate. He did not desire to use the language of exaggeration, when he said that a more important question than that before them never, perhaps, occupied the attention of the House. Whether they regarded the time at which it was introduced, the peculiar and anomalous condition of Society, and the circumstances of the country to which it related, the difference between the professed and, perhaps, sincere object of many of its supporters, and the hidden motive of its real promoters, still more the tendency of its enactments, he did not believe it possible to over-rate its importance, or to magnify the vital consequences which might flow from the measure, as affecting all the essential interests of Ireland—its political tranquillity, its social condition, the cause of true religion there, and the permanent peace, prosperity and happiness of that portion of the United Kingdom. It was very material that the real question in dispute between the two sides of the House should be fairly considered and rightly understood; with that view he would caution the House against two errors equally great, though extremely opposite—the one involved a charge against those who, under the circumstances already explained to the House, dissent from the Bill—that they were the enemies of all Reform, the bigotted sticklers for every corporate abuse, and that they set themselves against all change or improvement; the other of the opposite character—that they were in this case ultra-destructives, more anxious to destroy than to reform—while some, amongst whom was the noble Lord, the Secretary at War (Lord Howick), declared that they were fighting for a shadow, and factiously contending for that which was a distinction without a difference. If the House would indulge him for a few minutes, he thought he could show that all these representations of the position of those with whom he acted were equally removed from truth. He would endeavour in a very few words to state, and very shortly to adduce his proof, what was the real point at issue. With regard to the abolition of existing Corporations, his side of the House adopted the very words of the Bill introduced by the other. The Government had conceded to the opponents of the Bill the appointment of the officers of Justice, and placed it in the hands of the Crown, with the single exception of the election of the mayors. Respecting the management of the trifling property which belonged to the Corporations of Ireland, there was no substantial disagreement between them. But then he came to what did form the real and essential difference, and it was this—the establishment of fifty popular assemblies or debating societies, under the name of town-councils, which the Government said were for the peaceable and good Government of the towns, which the hon. and learned Member for Dublin (Mr. O'Connell) would describe as normal schools for teaching the science of peaceful agitation; but which he (Mr. Shaw) and his friends at once and openly denounced as so many political engines to be transferred from the hands of one of the great contending parties in Ireland to the other, to be worked by an irresponsible power, hostile to the peace of that country, and the interests of this, and which wielded at its arbitrary will, as by a single arm, the passions and the physical force of an ignorant and too often deluded multitude. Let them for a moment compare the two propositions. That originally sketched out by his right hon. Friend, Sir R. Peel, and after wards reduced to form by his noble Friend, Lord Francis Egerton, had for its object the extinction of existing Corporations, the efficient and impartial administration of justice, and the internal peace and good Government of the cities and towns of Ireland. It proposed to remove all just causes of complaint; to put an end to sectarian distinction; and to surrender the exclusiveness of political influence. The means suggested to attain that end were, to place the administration of justice on the same footing as in counties at large—to vest the property in a temporary Commission, to be appointed by the present Government, with powers to institute a searching inquiry after, and to recover by process of law any property that may have, if any, had been improperly alienated—to pay off in cumbrances—to make compensation to the parties entitled to it—as far as practicable to abolish tolls—to make over all charitable funds to Commissioners specially appointed; and then, instead of applying what remained to the maintenance of mayors, town-councils, and corporate officers, to apply it to the public benefit of all the inhabitants of each city or town to which it might belong. The police to be governed by one uniform system, applicable to the whole country, according to the Bills introduced by the Government for Ireland this session; and the ordinary corporate functions of paving, lighting, and cleansing, &c, to be discharged in Dublin, as at present, by the Boards now existing, which are uncontrolled by the present Corporation, and over which the Bill gives no power to the new Corporation. By the local Acts now in operation in almost all the principal towns in Ireland—and leaving the 9th George 4th, c. 82, so much praised by the Commissioners and by the right hon. Gentleman (Mr. O'Loghlen), to be adopted in all other towns that desired it, he contended that, independently of the great and paramount political objection to the establishment of fifty popular assemblies in Ireland, by the means proposed by those with whom he acted, the towns would be better governed, the peace better preserved, and all strictly municipal duties much better performed, than under the provisions of the Bill. As to the plan of the Government, his side of the House agreed in abolition. The Government had, bit by bit, yielded up the appointment of the officers of justice—first the Sheriffs, then the clerks of the peace, the qualification of jurors, the discretion of the town council as to the Commission of the Peace, the salary of the Recorder, and, in short, all but the mayors; though, no doubt, upon their own principle, they would prefer these should have no magisterial power, in decency to the pretence that they must be kept up, they could hardly strip them of all authority. But their great point was, town-councils, popular control, and assimilation to England. He would then examine their Bill, and see how they acted upon those principles; first, for example, take Dublin, in property, population, and importance, equal to nearly half of all the Corporations in Ireland; there the Government, suspicious of their own principle, did not venture to apply it. The Bill did not invest the new town-council in Dublin with control over the Ballast Board, the Wide-street Commissioners, or the Paving Board, but expressly excepts them from its operation, and, by the way, the Commissioners state in their Report, that, with the addition of a few clerks, the Paving Board would be quite adequate to regulate the affairs of all the local taxation of Dublin. With respect to the police—the popular control to which i the noble Lord, the Secretary for Ireland, would subject it was described in a Bill delivered last Saturday, the preamble of which is, "whereas it is expedient to substitute a new and more efficient system of police within the Dublin metropolis, and to constitute an office of police, which, acting under the immediate authority of the chief secretary of the Lord-Lieutenant, shall direct and control the whole of such new system of police." As to the ten other places of importance, they were at present, and were to continue to be, almost entirely governed by local Acts now in force—and any other town that pleased might adopt the provisions of the 9th George 4th, 82. He would now pass to the thirty-nine boroughs in schedule C it would amuse the House to learn something of the nature and character of these thirty-nine mighty municipalities—for which alone this Bill seems, in respect of really corporate objects, to provide a new constitution. Population, property, and having existing Corporations, are alleged to be the ground on which they are selected. Would the House believe that the whole of these Corporations put together have a population of little more than 200,000, and that their entire property is about 13,000l. a year—that is, they (the thirty-nine taken altogether) fall short of the population of Dublin alone by more than 30,000l.They have not half the property, and yet for Dublin the Bill provides a mayor, sixteen aldermen, and forty-eight councillors, while for the management of half the property, and 30,000 fewer inhabitants, it gives thirty mayors, 180 aldermen, and 440 town councillors. He defied the supporters of the Bill to show any one principle upon which it was founded. He denied that it was either population, property, existing Corporations, or any combination of these three; it set all calculation at defiance. He challenged a single reason why Belturbet and Bangor,; with their 2,000 population, were retained, while Newry and Dungarvon, with their population of 13,000 and 10,000, were; rejected from the Bill as it stood last year. If it was said that the Bill kept all that were reported as "effectively subsisting," he could show ten that were omitted from the list specified under that head. If it was alleged to be population, he could show seventeen boroughs included in the Bill of last year and now omitted, which contained a population of 80,000; while they had retained seventeen, whose populations together only amounted to 58,000. If they were driven to property, then they were met by the fact that the whole thirty-nine boroughs in schedule C. had but 13,000l., a year among them; and that thirteen of the number were without any property at all; and ring the changes as they pleased upon population, property, and existing corporations, the Government could not produce the shadow of a cause why they struck out Thomastown and Midleton, while they kept Bangor, Wick-low, and Belturbet. The truth was, they had been labouring against their own conviction. At every step of the Bill they betrayed a consciousness that they had no sound principle to sustain them, and each concession that they had been forced to make to reason and common sense, served but to prove that they were endeavouring to give colour to the pretext of a general corporate system, which a hard necessity imposed upon them as the price of the support of those whose only object was to have fifty legalized debating clubs or political associations scattered throughout the country under the assumed and fraudulent titles of ancient corporate assemblies. All he (Mr. Shaw) could say was, that if such were established in Ireland, with their accompaniments of daily canvassing and yearly registrations, constant elections, and interminable excitement, the perpetual trial of party strength and exhibitions of party triumph, to expect, under such circumstances, peaceable government of the towns, and a calm, efficient administration of the laws, reason must have lost her influence, and the lessons of experience have been learned in vain, the whole course of nature changed, or what would be as extraordinary, Ireland suddenly transformed into a sort of paradise, where passion and prejudice could not exist, and political strife or religious animosity had never found an entrance. The noble Lord, the Secretary for Ireland, had, on a former occasion, done him the honour to quote some observations he had made in the noble Lord's presence, upon the swearing in of the present Lord Mayor of Dublin, with a view, he presumed, to ex- hibit some inconsistency between the opinions he then held and the course he was now taking. He considered they were perfectly consistent. He believed the substance of the passage quoted was, that he was ready to admit, that when any great organic change was made in the constitution of a state, there should be an harmonious and gradual adaptation of all its parts and members to its altered and actually subsisting condition; and it was entirely in the spirit of that sentiment, that looking to the present condition and circumstances of Ireland, seeing that the Emancipation Bill had passed, the great alteration made by the Reform Act, and considering that it would be childish to legislate at the present day as if the last ten years had not elapsed, he was ready to act upon the principle that civil qualification was to be the test for civil office, | and to advise the experiment, for experiment it must be called, of that which he would for convenience call the Protestant party, although the party existed for centuries before the name of Protestant, making a voluntary surrender of their exclusiveness or ascendancy, or whatever other style it was pleased to give to those means which, whether rightly or wrongly, the English nation for the last seven centuries had thought necessary for the security of those who represented their feelings and maintained their interests in Ireland. He had certainly desired, if it were possible, to build upon the ancient foundations, and to retain somewhat of the character of the original building; but upon the most anxious consideration, and having regard to the origin and essence of the Irish Corporations, he found it to be absolutely impossible consistently with the object he had just professed. He thanked the noble Lord for having reminded him of another expression of his, used at the same time, namely, that he deprecated subversion under the specious guise of reformation. He disliked all false pretences, and he must say, that his Majesty's Ministers were liable to that charge when they maintained that the Bill, as affecting the ancient and existing Corporations of Ireland, was not a measure of entire and unqualified annihilation. Aye, but its supporters would fain go further, and raise up a rival party in their name and on their ruins, while, at the same time, they endeavoured to throw dust in the eyes of the public, charging those who re- fused to take that further step, with proposing a more sweeping and destructive substitute. The history of the Corporations, the experience of every man who knew Ireland, every line of the Commissioners' Report, demonstrated that the Irish Corporations never were intended for, and never answered the purposes now pretended. Dublin was granted, in the 12th century, by Henry 2d., to his men of Bristol, as an English fortress; and for a long succession of ages were to be found recorded in Charters and Statutes the repeated acknowledgments of almost every successive Sovereign of the faithful services of that Corporation—not in paving and lighting and cleansing, or any other corporate purposes, but in raising armies and expending their blood and treasure in defence of the British Crown and Government, and in upholding the British connexion in that country. In Dublin, the functions of the Corporation had always been more political than corporate, and the present Bill, while it proposed to transfer the political power to new hands, alarmed at its own principle, did not venture to grant the corporate functions, but left them in the hands of the existing Boards that now managed them. If he (Mr. Shaw) were asked for proof that in Dublin the transfer of power would be made from one party to another, he gave it in this fact, that although since the passing of the Reform Act one-fourth of the registered electors were freemen of the old Corporation, yet the influence of the 10l. householders had uniformly preponderated against them, and returned the Members to Parliament; throw out these 1,900 who would have no votes in the corporate constituency, and it was plain that the whole power would be in the hands of the extreme party on the other side. Then if the House desired to know the opinion of the citizens of Dublin on this subject, he would just quote a passage from the proceedings of a club there, calling themselves "The Central Independent Club of the Citizens of Dublin," but who were under the complete control of the hon. and learned Member for Dublin.—They stated the object to be "to secure the independence of the city, and to give them their legitimate influence," by which means they stated that "the club would be able to wield such a corporate constituency as to secure the wards, the common council, the board of aldermen, and every other office of delight and influence"—turn to the original purpose of the Irish Corporations, the Commissioners report that James 1st gave charters to fifty-five Corporations in Ireland, and they say, "that these were in fact close Corporations, exclusively Protestant." With respect to Belturbet, which was retained with its two thousand inhabitants, the Commissioners report, that "originally created for Protestant purposes, it always continued an exclusively Protestant Corporation." And so late as within the last century an Act was passed relative to the Corporation of Kilkenny, which in its very title, purported to be "An Act for strengthening the Protestant interest in the Corporation." But, as he (Mr. Shaw) had stated already, before the distinction of Protestant and Roman Catholic was known, party spirit was almost as rife in Ireland as it had been since. The same parties, under the names of English and anti-English, of the original inhabitants and the settlers, one possessing the property, the other representing numbers, one set contending for the possession of the country, the other to expel them, maintained a constant warfare. At the Reformation, the English party adopted the religion of this country—the Irish kept their own, and no doubt the difference of religion has since served not only to mark more plainly the division, but had naturally contributed to embitter the still more ancient strife between them. Let it not, however, be said that this was a matter of religious inequality, for all the Protestants now asked, with respect to the measure before the House, was equal terms. And was there a man in that House that would venture to get up in his place, and seriously assert that, in the present state and circumstances of Ireland, any sane legislature would attempt, not only to apply similar principles of legislation, but identical enactments to that country and to this? The present Bill itself belied the supposition, for it was totally different, especially as regards the administration of justice from the English Act on the same subject. And what were the Police and Constabulary Bills brought in by the noble Lord opposite this session, but continuations of the Whiteboy Code, the Insurrection Acts, the Peace Preservation, the Suppression of Association, and the Coercion Acts, while this Bill would establish fifty such associations that no law could reach, and various shifts and devices which those Acts recited and provided against, as having been resorted to for the evasion of the law, which would be no longer necessary. But surely, whatever others did, his Majesty's Ministers could not; forget their own speeches and acts upon that subject, much less the speeches which within the last few years they had put into the mouth of his Majesty, and the Acts which, upon the ground of a strong necessity, they had called upon that House to pass? It was not long since his Majesty had been advised by his present Ministers to tell that House, that in-subordination and violence were raging in Ireland, the law set at defiance, and life and property insecure. Did Ministers forget the despatches of Lord Wellesley, their own Lord-Lieutenant, describing lawless combination as in full force, and a complete system of savage legislation established almost in every district of three provinces in Ireland? He would not now refer to the causes so clearly and forcibly traced out in these despatches. Could Englishmen forget the remarkable expression there applied to the condition of Ireland, that, in many parts of it, it was safer to violate the law than obey it? Need he refer to the observations of Lord Althorp to the same effect, when ridiculing the notion of assimilating the two countries in legislation, while one enjoyed the blessings of a well-regulated liberty, and the other was labouring under the double curse of terrorism and slavery? Would to God that he (Mr. Shaw) could say with truth, that the present condition of the country was materially improved; but let any unprejudiced man compare the reports of the proceedings at the Irish, compared with those at the English assizes, and say, could he justly come to that conclusion? Did they hear in England of sixty-eight persons charged at one assize town for murder of men, the witnesses of murder, declaring, that, from fear of their own lives, they had to keep the secret for months, and forcing the Judge to exclaim, that, thank God, there were happier regions where such fear did not exist, and so dreadful a secret could not have slept so long?—another Judge, witnessing the total frustration of the ends of justice in a case of the foulest murder, having to declare aloud, that if such a state of society were allowed to continue in that unfortunate country, the inhabitants might well pray to God to deliver them from it, and to shorten their days? The number of homicides returned for the last few years in Ireland was enough to make the blood of humanity run cold; and Lord Hatherton, when Secretary for Ireland, said, that during his Secretary ship, the reports of murders in Ireland made to his office averaged two for every day in the year. It was only the other day that he had read in a daily journal, high in the confidence of the Government, that, in the county of Kilkenny, there was what was termed a house of call for murders, where a book was kept, and it was only necessary to enter any man's name, and make a deposit, according to a fixed scale of prices, in order to procure that man's house to be burnt, his cattle destroyed, or himself or family murdered in cold blood—the higher atrocity only to be measured by the money-price set upon it. And would Englishmen admit, that a country in this state of barbarous uncivilization was to have its laws assimilated to theirs? Would it be borne in this country, that the priest of any religion should exercise that despotic sway and spiritual tyranny over the minds of the people that universally operated at the Irish elections? Was it fitting to increase tenfold the number of political elections in a country where men, who voted against the popular will were suffered by the so-called ministers of religion to be dragged from their places of public worship, and the wood of the pews which they occupied broken to pieces, and placed before their windows, and in sight of their families, in the forms of gibbets and of coffins?—where the Roman Catholic priests could so far forget their sacred duty, and desecrate their functions, as to persuade their ignorant flocks, that every vote they gave was for their God? ["hear" from Mr. Roebuck.] Did the hon. Member for Bath really mean by that cheer, that such a course could be justified? [Mr. Roebuck had not so intended.] He would state a still more aggravated case of an election where great political excitement prevailed, and the priest from his altar declared that it was not to be considered an election on earth, but in heaven, where every vote that was given was registered. And would it, then, be said, that sound popular control could operate amongst a peo- ple in a country where such things could be said, and believed, and have their fearful influence? This very priesthood it was whom the hon. and learned Member for Dublin, in his project as to the Volunteers of Ireland, had told the people they should resort to in all worldly matters in place of the lawful magistracy; and the priesthood in return openly boasted," that set up a cabbage-stalk in the name of O'Connell and Repeal, and they would return it by a triumphant majority." Did his Majesty's Ministers really believe, that, by increasing such a power as that, they would add to the happiness of one single human being, who was subject to it? Did the noble Lord opposite, and those about him, themselves find the same service to be perfect freedom? Was this the luxury of liberty that the noble Lord, the Secretary at War (Lord Howick) had on a former night described? Depend upon it that party who were demanding that Ireland should govern herself, meant that they should be allowed to govern her. \V hen they asked for equal laws, what they intended was, that they themselves should obtain the power of administering; and controlling them—and when they declared with menaces and threats, that they would have justice for Ireland, they were only grasping at the sword of justice for their own purposes. England would have cause to rue the day they gained it—it would be no longer the instrument of equal laws, nor would it turn to the ploughshare of peaceful industry, but an iron rod of despotism to their deluded followers, and of fierce oppression to their opponents. It would be wielded as the weapon of unceasing hostility to the interests of England and the integrity of the United Kingdom. He would entreat the House to consider how each successive concession had, been received, and made the groundwork for further demands. When Roman Catholic Emancipation was granted, then its warmest supporters were denounced as Orange, and as bigoted as its most strenuous opponents. Next came Reform—and who had been so maligned as the Marquess Wellesley, Lord Anglesey, the noble Lord on his left (Lord Stanley), and all the most distinguished supporters of that measure? When Repeal was the order of the day, when the object was to gain the Orangemen, they "were noble, and generous, and high minded," and the Whigs, who opposed it, were "base, I bloody, and brutal." But when this further step to that measure of fifty licensed associations became necessary, then the Orangemen who had rejected the former overtures became "fell fiends and; an infernal faction," and the name of Whig, which a short time since, "if any person desired to describe the extreme of meanness, selfishness, and hypocrisy, would supply his every purpose of execration," was now synonymous with "justice to Ireland." Since then, the leaders of the Orange party in Ireland had nobly and generously sacrificed feelings connected with their earliest associations, and run the hazard of giving offence to their dearest and most valued friends, in order to anticipate the wish of the Crown, and to meet the general feeling of this country; and yet they were held up by the organs of the opposite party as having betrayed and deserted the friends and the cause they would willingly have laid down their lives to serve. And now the Protestants of Ireland, surrendering for peace-sake the last of their former privileges, have proposed to their opponents terms of perfect equality, which had been disdainfully rejected, and thus the prediction fulfilled—that nothing but supremacy would satisfy them. He expected little from an appeal to the House in the present position of party politics. From his Majesty's Ministers, whatever might be their own better judgment, it was in vain to expect any good result from that judgment in the present case, depending as they were for their daily existence upon a party whose only object in the present Bill was the political power it was calculated to confer on themselves. But he felt entitled to ask his Majesty's Ministers, and they should let the country know, what were their real intentions with respect to Ireland. He had seen what he might call a demi-official announcement of the intentions of his Majesty's Ministers in reference to the present measure. It was from an authority high in their estimation. [An Hon. Member: It was a Tory journal.] Then The Morning Chronicle was a Tory journal. The paragraph was as follows:—"We are satisfied that no person can read these instructions without fully concurring in the statesmanlike and conciliatory view taken of the whole case by his Majesty's Ministers. They are grounded on the same principles with their policy towards Ireland, and it is impossible not to see the obvious analogies in the two cases. In Canada there has been an ascendant English, as in Ireland there has been an ascendant Orange party, and it is not easy to reconcile either to their loss of power and influence. But in Canada there is at least this advantage, that no religious difference has been added to other difficulties, and as the English inhabitants are willing now to restrict their claims to an impartial administration of the judicial and executive authorities (independent of the annual votes of the other party in the House of Assembly), the application of the same principles by which it is proposed to provide for the administration of justice in the Irish Municipal Reform Bill will effect that object, and secure the undisturbed enjoyment of their property and pursuits of industry by the numerical minority, leaving the majority in possession of all other political power and influence." If this was the real intention of the Government, the people of England should be fairly apprised of it. To them—to their recollection of former attachments—to their generous nature, and above all to their sense of justice, he made the appeal of their Protestant brethren in Ireland. It was right, that the British public should know in respect of the present measure the real state of the case as far as the Irish Protestants were concerned. They did not desire the continuance of a single abuse; they consented, under the present circumstances of Ireland, to the abolition of existing Corporations. They only asked, that they should not be transferred to their opponents; that their property should be appropriated to the general benefit of all the inhabitants of the particular localities to which it belonged; that the administration of justice should be in the hands of the Crown; that from that source might be dispensed equal laws, equal government, and impartial justice. But with regard to the political power and influence which they surrendered, they implored this country not to transfer it to the hands of a party who had been always hostile to the British Crown and British interests. He did not desire on the part of the Protestants of Ireland to raise the cry of "No Popery," in any political spirit. He supposed the hon. and learned Gentleman, as he had said the other night, judged of others by himself when they made a statement of a fact; but he repeated, that he did not join in the cry of "No Popery," in any spirit of politics; but, on the other hand, he would religiously conjure the people of England not to suffer the principle of no Protestantism to be acted on in Ireland. He would tell them, in all sincerity and truth, that if additional power was given to the Roman Catholic priesthood and agitators in Ireland, that being the sole object of the present Bill, there would be no security for the religion, the property, the liberties, or the lives of the Protestants in that country; and he would warn the English people, on their own account, that if they did increase that power, they would be laying the foundation either of the final dismemberment of the British empire, or of a necessity to reconquer that portion of it which his unhappy country constituted. The right hon. Gentleman concluded by moving, "that the Bill be read a third time that day six months," and sat down amidst loud cheers.

Mr. Blackstone

In rising to second the motion of the right hon. Gentleman, I take an early occasion of expressing my satisfaction at having an opportunity afforded me of giving a satisfactory and honest vote in opposition to the principles of the Bill introduced by his Majesty's Government. Having been one of the minority who recently supported the resolution moved by the noble Lord, the Member for Lancashire, I think it but fair and candid to state to this House, that on no occasion did I come to a vote with greater difficulty and uneasiness, or one which since has given me a greater cause for regret. The more I have reflected upon that subject, the more I have had reason to believe that the principles there adopted, though probably less felt in their immediate results, were infinitely more subversive of the constitution, and dangerous to the liberties of the subject, than those contained in the Bill upon the table. I object not merely to the principle of destroying all vested rights, but to the unconstitutional powers to be erected in their stead, to carry out the principles of destruction. It has been stated that these Corporations are exclusively Protestant, and the right hon. Baronet, the Member for Tamworth, has argued, that in carrying out the measure of 1829, which he introduced for the relief of the Roman Catholics, it is incon- sistent with the principles of that Bill to support a Protestant ascendancy; but he is equally averse to giving the ascendancy to the great portion of the nation differing in religious views. To avoid this the right hon. Gentleman proposes to abolish all the institutions together, that neither party may have a triumph. Now, Sir, let us apply that principle to the Established Church in Ireland; being in the hands of a minority in that country, it is most undoubtedly a species of Protestant ascendancy, equally militating against the principles of the Bill of 1829. Now, as the Catholics are not to have the ascendancy, the Church must share the same fate as the Corporations, and be totally abolished in carrying out the principles of the noble Lord's resolution. But, Sir, I have to condemn, in the substitution for these defunct Corporations, the fresh unconstitutional powers to be vested in the Crown, usurping all the municipal functions, and centering in it all the privileges hitherto possessed by the people. I trust I shall always be found to support the just prerogatives of the Crown, but I am equally jealous of the rights and liberties of the subject. I will not further allude to the resolution in question, but again declare that I conceive the present opposition to the third reading of the Bill introduced by the Government to be the most manly and straightforward course to adopt. I agree most perfectly with the right hon. Gentleman, that it is most dangerous to the properties and liberties of the Protestants in Ireland to throw these Corporations into the hands of a priest-ridden and bigotted multitude; and, as he has so ably depicted the state of that country, I shall not attempt to follow him; but again repeating my gratification at being able to give a direct vote in opposition to this Bill, and as an independent Member, determining to oppose every principle which I conceive to be dangerous to the constitution, come from whatever side of the House it may, I beg leave to second the amendment, that this Bill be read a third time this day six months.

Mr. Ward

had one fault to find with the speech of the right hon. Member for the University of Dublin. It seemed to him to be a speech, not on the motion for the third reading of the Bill, but upon the motion of the noble Lord, the Member for South Lancashire. The proposition of that noble Lord had reduced the ques- tion into very narrow limits. Hon. Gentlemen opposite had given up, as untenable, the position they had always maintained in every previous discussion. They had given up the principle of the inviolability of corporation property. They had abandoned the ancient and wise institutions of our ancestors, and had condescended to adopt that plain and simple rule which taught us to regard those institutions, rather with a view to their utility than to their age, and to retain or to abolish them as we found them suitable or not to our own wishes and times. He should like to know, from hon. Gentlemen opposite, what had induced them to adopt this course—He should wish to know from the hon. Baronet, the Member for the University of Oxford, upon what possible principle he had adopted this course. He should wish to know from the noble Lord the Member for South Lancashire, why he had followed it. He should like to know from another hon. Baronet, the Member for Bristol, who opposed the third reading of the English Municipal Reform Bill, why he had adopted this course? He should wish those hon. Members, each and all of them, to reconcile, if they could, the votes which they were going to give this night with the strong language which they had used on former occasions. He saw no principle on which they could defend their proposed destruction of Corporations in Ireland, unless it be that which leads an army to spike its own guns lest they should be turned against them after they had fallen into the possession of the enemy. Now, he protested against their legislating on any such false assumption. He could not consider the corporate system of one third part of the empire as a weapon to be turned by the Catholic against the Protestant population of Ireland. He considered this Bill for the better regulation of Municipal Corporations in Ireland as an engine for promoting good local government in that country. He was certain that it would be found a powerful engine for accomplishing that object when left to the natural operation of time and circumstances. Though at first there might be, as there had been with us, elections made under the influence of strong reaction, he was convinced that, in the long-run, no man would be chosen by the municipal constituency who was not prepared to exer- cise his municipal functions impartially for the benefit of the community at large. He wished to see the Municipal Corporations of Ireland purified from abuses, and secured against the return of the abuses from which they were purified, by the vigilant superintendence of popular control. All the arguments urged by hon. Gentlemen on the other side of the House resolved themselves into this—that the vigilant superintendence of popular control, and the impartial administration of justice by means of corporate Magistrates, could not exist together in a country so distracted by party as Ireland. They seemed inclined to contend that we were bound to look to the impartial administration of justice, but that we were not bound to look to the machinery by which that impartial administration of justice was to be effected. Now, he admitted, that for the impartial administration of justice great sacrifices ought to be made, but he must contend, at the same time, that the machinery for securing it was by no means an unimportant consideration. Municipal institutions were, in his opinion, the first step to liberty, and after they were established the best and firmest guarantee for its continuance. They were the best schools for teaching the principles, and the most constitutional fortresses for defending and preserving the privileges of freemen. To use the words of an eloquent foreigner, De Tocqueville, "They are to liberty what primary schools are to science. They bring it within the people's reach. They teach men to use it, and to enjoy it. A nation may establish a system of free Government without municipal institutions, but it cannot establish the spirit of freedom." For his own part he could not see any reason why the House of Commons should deprive Ireland of the rights which it had secured to the people of England and to the people of Scotland, on the score that the people of Ireland had long been divided, and still continue to be divided, into conflicting parties by the difference of religious opinions. On what plea was it that they now denied to the people of Ireland the possession of those rights of which the people of England and the people of Scotland were now in the calm and tranquil enjoyment? They were denying the possession of those rights to the people of Ireland on this solitary ground, that it would be the transfer of power from one exclusive party—and be thanked the hon. and learned Member for the University of Dublin for admitting that his was an exclusive party—to another equally exclusive. But was there, he would ask, no difference between these two parties, admitting them to be equally exclusive? Was not one of them an inconsiderable faction, and was not the other the bulk of the population of Ireland? The right hon. Gentleman opposite (Mr. Shaw) had called their attention to the wide distinction which existed between the minority and the majority of that population. He had stated that the minority was powerful from its property and its intelligence, and that on that account the majority ought not to have full sway. Now, to that opinion of the right hon. Gentleman he should oppose the opinion of the right hon. Baronet, the Member for Tamworth, who had admitted that in all matters, save those which had reference to the impartial administration of justice, the constitutional rights of the majority ought not to be set aside. ["No, no,"] He did not intend to misrepresent the opinion of the right hon. Member for Tamworth; but he certainly understood the right hon. Baronet to have expressed the opinion to which he had just alluded. Would they then deny to the people of Ireland the rights created by this Bill? and why did they deny them? Because the majority of them were Roman Catholics. There was no other reason in the world. If they had been Presbyterians, or Protestant Dissenters, or Unitarians, or Baptists, or members of any other sect, they would not have endeavoured to withhold from them those rights; but because they were Catholics they were determined to refuse them. He was well aware that for many years past it had been the policy—God knew that it never had been, and that it never, would be the interest—of the British Government to rule Ireland by and through that minority of which the right hon. Member opposite was so distinguished a Member. But surely the House neither had forgotten, nor would forget, that ever since the first concession of privileges till then withheld, and of rights till then denied, had been made to the Roman Catholics in 1779, our history had been one continued history of concessions, one continued relaxation of the penal code forced from the Legislature by that spirit of justice and that love of equal rights which, even in the worst of times, had always been the distinguishing characteristics of the British Constitution. In the year 1829 the final seal was set to those concessions, and every barrier was removed which for so many years had distinguished the Catholic from the Protestant subjects of his Majesty. He did not wish for a better or a more comprehensive definition of the object of the Act of Emancipation, which was then passed, than that which was given a few evenings since by the right hon. Statesman who prepared it. The right hon. Baronet, the Member for Tamworth, had fairly told the House, that his object in bringing in that Bill was to establish a perfect equality of civil rights among all sects and denominations of his Majesty's subjects, and to make a man's civil worth, not his religious faith, a test of his fitness and qualification for office. He now called upon the right hon. Baronet to work out his own principle fully and fairly by giving his assent to the third reading of this Bill, without casting any unjust imputations upon those who were to be benefited by it. He had been too hasty. He ought not to have attributed any such imputations to the right hon. Baronet—the right hon. Baronet had scorned to use them, but they had been avowed by his party, and lavishly flung around, without any regard either to truth or to justice. That party had declared over and over again, and the right hon. Gentleman the Recorder of Dublin, had this night declared that the mere fact of there being such persons in existence as Irish priests and Irish agitators was a sufficient cause to disqualify the people of Ireland for the enjoyment of municipal rights—that so overwhelming was the influence of the priests and agitators, so calculated was it to taint every social and political relation in Ireland with a moral pestilence, that it was neither safe nor prudent to trust the people of Ireland with those rights, which had been granted in full perpetuity to the inhabitants of the other portions of the empire. The same tone and the same argument had pervaded the discussion of a former night. The hon. and learned Member for Bandon had alluded to certain expressions which he charged the hon. and learned Member for Dublin with having used respecting the Knight of Kerry during all the heats and animosities of a contested election, and had contended that those expressions formed a sufficient excuse for denying to the people of Ireland the rights which were now fully enjoyed by the people of England and Scotland. Another right hon. Gentleman, who had formerly been Secretary for Ireland, rested his speech and his argument entirely upon a violent speech said to have been delivered by Father Kehoe to his congregation from the altar. He would not enter into a point that was unquestionably open to discussion—namely, whether that speech had been correctly reported or not; for his own part he was inclined to think it was correctly reported, and for this reason, that if Father Kehoe had had the means of disclaiming it, he would certainly have availed himself of them—which, to the best of his knowledge, the rev. Father had never yet done. [Mr. O'Connell—Father Kehoe has disclaimed it.] He would speak out frankly and fearlessly—if Father Kehoe had used the language attributed to him, he had undoubtedly abused the influence of his situation; for a clergyman who mixed himself up with the violence of politics—no matter whether he were a Catholic or a Protestant clergyman—desecrated his holy functions, and injured, instead of served, the cause of religion. But admitting, for the sake of argument, that one Irish priest had abused the privileges of his station, was it right to say that every other Irish priest had been equally guilty of the same abuse, and to assert that that was a sufficient reason for withholding from the whole people of Ireland rights to which they were justly entitled. There was no man, either in that House or out of that House, who felt a greater respect than he did for the clergy of the Church of England. He believed that they were men of liberal education, excellent morals, blameless character, unimpeachable conduct, and, in general, singularly useful members of the community at large. But had the country never witnessed any acrimony or violence of temper—had it never heard any coarse language—among the ministers of the Church of England? He might allude to a very recent occurrence, and might say, "We have had some specimens within the few last weeks of the excess to which bigotry and fanaticism can carry a large party of the clergy of the Established Church." He would pass that over, however, without further notice, and would allude more particularly to a case which he thought ran nearly parallel with that of Father Kehoe. He held at that moment in his hand the report of a speech delivered on a very grand and solemn occasion, at a great Conservative meeting, attended by all the wealth and all the respectability, and, to borrow the phraseology of hon. Members opposite, all the property, of South Cheshire. At that meeting a speech was delivered by a clergyman of the Church of England, which would rank with the speech of Father Kehoe, and which ought no more to be taken as a criterion of the sentiments of the clergy of the Church of England than Father Kehoe's speech should be taken as a criterion of those of the Catholic clergy of Ireland. He held in his hand the speech of the reverend Joshua King, delivered at a grand Conservative dinner in South Cheshire. One of the arguments pointed against the hon. and learned Member for Dublin, on a former night, was, that in an address which he had made to the electors of Limerick, he had called all those persons who had intended to vote against the liberal candidates demons. Would the House believe it, that the reverend Joshua King, who professed to be a minister of charity and religion, and to preach peace and good will among men, had called a measure which had passed that House, and had been deliberately sanctioned by one branch of the Legislature, "diabolical?" He was not willing to look with too great nicety at these expressions; but if they were to avail themselves of every unguarded expression which fell from a rash and imprudent individual as a reason for stripping the people of Ireland of their rights, they ought, on the same principle, to have denied the Reform Bill to the people of England, because there were some individuals who "urged it forward with precipitate violence, and because the people of England were led away by their influence. Let this House listen to the language of the reverend Joshua King:— The grant to Maynooth had been followed up by one of the most atrocious, unprincipled, and diabolical measures that ever disgraced a Christian legislature, and which none but the very refuse of the Whig faction, impelled on-wards in the mad career of revolution by Popish agitators, intriguing fanatical Dissenters, and infidel Republicans, would have ever had the audacity to insult the public by proposing. That was the language of a minister of the Church of England, who had the cure of 62,666 souls in two different and distant parishes. His example would not contaminate the inhabitants of both parishes, for one of them he intrusted to the care of his curates, and the other, which he called his patrimonial property, he superintended himself. That, he begged the House to remark, was the way in which a clergyman of the Church of England had deliberately spoken of a measure which had received the deliberate sanction of one branch of the Legislature. That same individual, on the same occasion—and he suspected that the reverend gentleman's sentiments were very much to the taste of the meeting, for the Report represented them to have been received with loud cheering—that same individual had thought fit to speak in the following terms of the House of Commons, and of some of its members:— Whenever the clergy of the Established Church were disparagingly mentioned (and they were never alluded to by certain Members without acrimony and the bitterest invective), such discordant yells were set up as were not surpassed in a menagery of wild beasts at feeding-time, there being nothing human but their forms, and he was told that the two Whig members for that county, and the shallowpated Radical for the city, had learned the Irish yell to such perfection, that they would on such occasions, astound even a keeper at Pidcock's or Wombwell's menagery. And this was the conduct of Legislators in the first Reformed House of Commons. He would put it to his hon. Friend, the Member for the University of Oxford, whether he had seen, in the last House of Commons, or in this, the second Reformed House of Commons, any instance of the House treating the clergy of the Church of England with that contumely and disrespect of which the reverend Joshua King so bitterly complained? There might be different views entertained by different Members as to the best mode of administering the rights and property of that Church, but he boldly averred that there had been no such conduct witnessed in that House as the reverend gentleman had taken upon himself the hardihood of asserting. Just as well might the speech of the reverend Joshua King be taken as a criterion of the sentiments of his reverend brethren in the Church of England, and be urged as a proof that the people of England, over whom such men exercised spiritual influence, were unworthy to ex- ercise municipal rights, as the speech of Father Kehoe be urged as a reason for disqualifying the people of Ireland for the enjoyment of the privileges of Municipal Reform. The fact was, that the right hon. Baronet (Sir Henry Hardinge) had come down to the House full of the evidence contained in the Report of the Intimidation Committee. It was a singular circumstance that, with his excellent memory and his acute powers of discrimination, the right hon. Baronet had never seen but half the evidence taken by that Committee. One half of that evidence told strongly against the landlords, and the other half strongly against the priests of Ireland. The right hon. Baronet had brought the latter half prominently forward, and had skipped, with singular agility, entirely over the former half. The House would suppose, from the right hon. Baronet's statement, that there was nothing like compulsion on the part of the landlords, and nothing but undue influence and intimidation on the part of the priests. The death's head and cross-bones had also been brought forward in the same cause, and for the same purpose, by the right hon. Baronet. In this very district of South Cheshire, however, to which he had just been adverting, he could state upon the authority of one of the Members for that county, that a Conservative meeting had been held, to which the parties went in procession, preceded by flags, which answered exactly to the description given to those said to have been reared by the hon. and learned Member for Dublin, save that they placed the word "Catholic," where the hon. and learned Member was said to have placed the word "Protestant." At that meeting there were poured forth denunciations fast and furious against all those Members of Parliament who had the courage to vote for the extension of equal rights and privileges to our Roman Catholic brethren in Ireland. There was even a proscription promulgated against them. The hon. and learned Member for Dublin was represented as the Devil in propriâ personâ, and his tail was figured at wondrous length. He did not see how violence of language could be urged on the one side as a fair argument for withholding from the people of Ireland rights to which they were entitled, and yet could be laughed at on the other as a mere joke, not worthy a moment's thought to any man of common sense and feeling. The argu- ment, however, which the right hon. Baronet had derived from the violent language of priests and agitators was nothing but an old argument revived; for it had been urged from the very first moment that concession was demanded as an objection against making it. He knew that the right hon. Baronet, the Member for Tamworth, had scouted that argument, as it deserved to be scouted whenever the question of emancipation was under the consideration of the House. How the right hon. Baronet, who had formerly scouted it, could attach such importance to it now, when it was applied as an argument for refusing Municipal Reform to the Corporations of Ireland, he could not for his life conceive. In a former debate, in 1825, when this argument was urged as an objection to Catholic Emancipation, it was splendidly and triumphantly refuted by that illustrious statesman, Mr. Canning. He did not know whether the House recollected the passage to which he was alluding; if they did not, they would perhaps bear with him whilst he refreshed their memories by reading it:—"It is brought forward," said Mr. Canning, "as another objection to the concession of any political power to the Catholics, that they are, in Ireland especially, under the absolute guidance of their priests and of their political leaders—men whom they regard with a veneration bordering on idolatry: Sir, I admit the fact; but I lay the blame on another quarter. If the Roman Catholics are idolaters in religion (as we swear at this table that they are), we cannot help it. But if they are (as is now alleged), idolaters in politics, it is we who have to answer for their error. If we withdraw from them the more legitimate objects of political reverence—if we deny to them, as it were, the political sacraments of the Constitution, what wonder that they make to themselves false gods of the champions of their cause—of their spiritual and political leaders? But, fortunately, the cure of this crime (if it be one) is in our hands. Let us open to them the sanctuary of the law—let us lift up the veil which shuts them out from the British Constitution, and show them the spirit of freedom which dwells within—the object of our own veneration. Let us call them to partake in the same rites with which our purer worship is celebrated. Let us do this, and depend upon it we shall speedily wean them from their present political idolatry; and leave deserted the spurious shrines at which they now bow down before their Doyles and their O'Connells." He might, and indeed he did, differ from some of the expressions which Mr. Canning had used in this magnificent passage. He could not call the shrines spurious at which the people of Ireland now bowed down and worshipped. He thought that no man who was "a mere Irishman" could exist without feeling deep gratitude to the hon. and learned Member for Dublin for the important services which he had rendered his country. The man who could divest himself of such a feeling would not have the ordinary feelings of his kind. But had the advice which Mr. Canning gave with so much statesmanlike prudence in 1825, been followed by those who had the power of carrying it into execution—would the hon. and learned Member for Dublin have been in possession of that vast and commanding influence which he now enjoyed? It was the refusal of the Government of that day to act fairly by his country that had rivetted the influence of the hon. and learned Member for Dublin in the hearts of his countrymen—that had given him a power which might be dangerous in the hands of a single individual, which he would not say was undesirable in the present circumstances of Ireland, but which ought not, and which would not, exist under a sound state of policy. It was because he wished to see the hon. and learned Member for Dublin brought down to the level of his fellow countrymen, that he would not give to Ireland any new cause of complaint by rejecting this Bill. That was the main point which the House was now called upon to consider. It was now admitted on all hands that the Irish Corporations could not exist any longer in. their present condition. Even the speech of the right hon. Member for the University of Dublin was full of admissions to that effect. He admitted that there were abuses in them which could neither be defended nor palliated. The only question then left for the House was, what they ought to substitute for those Corporations? The only question was, whether they would consent to the destruction of these Corporations altogether, or to the substitution of a system of popular rights and popular control. Would they hesitate as to what they would do were the case their own? Had they hesitated when they were legislating for Scotland? Why, then, should they hesitate when they were legislating for Ireland? If they were to adopt the proposition of the noble Member for South Lancashire, and to destroy these Corporations without raising fresh ones on their ruins, the people of Ireland would become as nothing. He might, perhaps, be suspected of partiality in bestowing his praise upon Lord Mulgrave; but, undeterred by that suspicion, he would say, that that noble Lord, in one single year of his Administration, had done more to assuage the violence of party feeling, to conciliate the people of Ireland, to obliterate from their minds the memory of past grievances, and to inspire them with hopes, that in future justice would be done them, than all his predecessors since the Viceroyalty of Earl Fitzwilliam. With a population placed in the circumstances in which the population of Ireland was placed, he should grieve to see the Lord-Lieutenant mixed up with all the petty appointments to be made by the Crown in the towns deprived of Corporations. But if that were a dangerous experiment even with a popular Government in Ireland, what would be the result of it with an unpopular Government—with a Government, he would not say, actually in league, but only suspected to be in league with the minority of the inhabitants? Instead of tranquillity there would be confusion—instead of the orderly arrangements of justice, they would have a perfect chaos in Ireland. They would shut up the only safety-valve, and they would expose society in Ireland to a succession of explosions and convulsions which would ultimately shatter it to pieces. There was every reason, therefore, to press this Bill upon the House, and to sanction it by a decisive majority. He felt no doubt as to the propriety of passing it into law, if they did not wish to deceive and disappoint the high-wrought expectations of the people of Ireland. When every recent change had tended to increase and strengthen the influence of the democratic principle among us, he could see no assignable reason for the House withholding from a large portion of the empire those institutions which would teach them to use with discretion the power which the Constitution gave them. Still less could he see any danger from acceding to the prayers of the people of Ireland, when they called upon the House with one voice to give them equal rights and privileges with those which we ourselves possessed. He should, therefore, vote for the third reading of the Bill, as he saw no danger except in rejecting it.

Sir Robert Inglis

said, that in consequence of the personal appeal made to him by the hon. Member for St. Alban's, he felt it necessary to explain why he had not voted against the second reading of the Bill, and why he had voted for the amendment of his noble Friend, the Member for South Lancashire. By the admission of the noble Lord opposite the Corporations at present existing would by this measure be entirely swept away. The House of Commons had already sanctioned a Bill for putting an end to the existing Corporations in Ireland. The amendment of the noble Lord, the Member for South Lancashire, assumed that those Corporations had been already swept away, and proposed to substitute a different system in their stead. The expression, he believed, of the noble Lord, the Secretary for Ireland, was, that the Bill swept away that system which had been the source of so much mischief. Presuming then that the old Corporations were to be put an end to, it became their duty to substitute in the stead of those Corporations some system in which they could place confidence. They did not wish to see erected on the ruins of those institutions a structure of democracy, which would be the source of great political evil. They wished that those institutions should be succeeded by a Monarchical institution, instead of by a democratic system. They, of course, would have been anxious to preserve the existing institutions, but that was not the question they were now called on to discuss. He had supported the amendment that had been proposed by the noble Lord, but he would much rather have opposed the Bill altogether. He for one would have been anxious to maintain institutions which had for their object the establishment and support of a Protestant ascendancy. He would have preferred to maintain those institutions in the spirit in which they were established by their founders, namely, for the support of Protestant interests and of Protestant ascendancy. But if he was forced to decide upon a different system, he would prefer the nomination by the responsible advisers of the Crown rather than a nomination directed and influenced by the hon. and learned Member for Dublin. He would prefer the legitimate influence of Monarchy to the illegitimate influence of democracy. He wished that the present system should be succeeded by a system in which they could place confidence. In the plan proposed by the present Bill he had no confidence. The ground on which he and those who acted with him had supported the motion of the hon. Member for South Lancashire was as a choice of evils. He would have much preferred the course of resisting the measure altogether. He would have been pleased that the motion for rejecting the measure altogether had been made upon the second reading. He would appeal to hon. Members who sat near him at the time, that when the question, that the Bill be read a second time was put, he distinctly cried "No." Perhaps, they might not be successful in their opposition to the measure then, but if they were fated to be in a minority he should have the satisfaction of going into the lobby with as large a minority as any that that House had yet seen. The speech of the hon. Member for St. Alban's, who had last addressed the House, consisted, to a great extent, of quotations from speeches and arguments that had been used on a former debate. It had, however, happened that the memory of the hon. Gentleman had not supplied him correctly with these extracts and arguments of which he had so fully availed himself. [Mr. O'Connell yawned.] He regretted that the hon. and learned Member for Dublin's yawns were not so audible as they were at present whilst his hon. Friend had been addressing the House. The manner which that hon. and learned Member had adopted during the Session in his interruptions of those in whose views he differed was as little orderly as any of those interruptions that were described in the speech of the rev. Gentleman in South Cheshire, from whom such large quotations had been made. He did not know exactly what animal the hon. Gentleman might imitate in his conduct, but he certainly was not very decorous in his mode of interrupting those hon. Members who did not concur with him in opinion. The hon. Member for St. Alban's had quoted largely from the speech of the rev. Mr. King of Cheshire, and had used it as a set-off against the speech of Father Kehoe; but he asked, was there no difference between a speech delivered after dinner, under the excitement of political feeling, in the presence of persons before whom the speaker stood merely in a civil and social relation, and a speech delivered under circumstances in which spiritual influence was powerfully superadded to personal and political influence? There was much difference between the circumstances of a clergy man standing up amongst his equals and speaking with warmth strong political sentiments, and a priest standing upon the altar, arrayed in his surplice and invested with every circumstance that could impart importance to what he uttered, addressing an assemblage of persons over whom he exercised under such circumstances unlimited control. The difference was striking and evident. But whilst they had been able to quote observations which they were anxious to hold up as being excessively intemperate from the speech of only Catholic clergymen, he would ask any one who had read the evidence taken before the Committee, whether the speech of Father Kehoe was not only one out of many similar? Father Walsh, at Borris chapel, told the congregation, that any one who voted for Bruen and Cavanagh, would be refused all religious rights, and would thus incur the risk of everlasting punishment. Let them compare that declaration, delivered under such solemn circumstances, with the speech delivered after dinner—without consideration, and under circumstances essentially different. In the county of Kerry, Father John O'Sullivan declared, that any one who would vote for the Knight of Kerry, he would let him die like a beast, neither would he baptise his children. [Mr. O'Connell: Mr. O'Sullivan has denied that.] That was perfectly fair interruption, for he was not aware of the contradiction. [Mr. O'Connell: He contradicted the statement in two letters he published in the Morning Chronicle.] He felt bound to admit the contradiction, and as it had been given was willing to suppose that the statement had not been made. But they had many other instances. In Kerry all the Catholic priests in the county except three used their most active exertions over their flocks to effect the defeat of the Knight of Kerry. Could any one attempt to deny that the Catholic priesthood possessed the most unbounded influence over the great mass of the Catholic population of Ireland? Would any one deny that they would use that influence in the Corporations, and effect the total exclusion of the Protestant inhabitants? The original institution of these Corpora- tions was for the maintenance of the Protestant interest. The first object of both combined, was the maintenance of English interests in that country. This some persons might call an abuse, but he called it a great blessing. He indeed regretted most sincerely that any portion of those interests had ever been compromised. Would any one deny the fact that the influence of the Catholic clergy in Ireland was hostile to the connexion with England? [Mr. O'Connell—"No, no."] He had heard that denial, but he believed that it was made because the Catholic Clergy in supporting the repeal of the Union declared that they were not adverse to British connection. He felt that that question had for its object the severance of British connection. It was not then before the House, but if it should ever again be brought before Parliament he would be prepared to resist it as he had already done. After some further observations the hon. Baronet concluded by stating, that he feared this measure would be dangerous to the connection between the two countries, as he knew it would be subversive of the Protestant interest in Ireland. Without, at that time, wishing to raise the "No Popery" cry on a religious ground—for were he so disposed that was not the place to do so—he would never shrink from raising the "No Popery" cry in a political sense. He felt that the present measure would be destructive to the best interests of the empire, and he for one would to the last most strenuously resist it.

Mr. William Roche

said, that connected as he was with the city of Limerick, which had been so often referred to in the debate on this question, than which none had figured more or had suffered more, heretofore, in the annals of municipal misgovernment, and he was sorry to add, of political perfidy also, he could not permit the Bill to leave this House without expressing his warm approval of it, considering it, as he did, a measure so much in accordance with the local rights and liberties of a free people—so congenial with our other institutions, and so characteristic of the representative principles and spirit of the constitution at large. He, therefore, hailed this measure as one imperatively called for and importantly useful—useful not only locally, but nationally—not only civilly and socially, but morally and religiously; nationally as well as lo- cally, because, as nations are composed of localities, the more we diffuse contentment among those localities we necessarily in-crease the aggregate amount of that happiness—morally and religiously, he proceeded, as well as civilly and socially, because whatever brings men together to consult upon affairs of common concernment, it powerfully tends to wear down political antipathies, and to obliterate those still more unworthy and unhallowed sectarian prejudices and animosities which desecrate the very name of religion, and bring a blush upon the cheek of Christian charity. He was convinced this measure would prove as truly gratifying to the immense majority of the Irish people, as he knew it was anxiously expected by them, and he was equally convinced it would inspire the minds of the Irish people with the pleasing impression that an Imperial Parliament not only can, but will, legislate for Ireland in the same spirit of justice, equality, and freedom enjoyed by the other divisions of the empire; an impression, the contrary of which, both in point of assertion and practice, had so materially hindered the legislative Union from being a national and natural one, as well as a mere political or parchment one. He, therefore, deemed it a measure second to none in importance, scarcely even to tithes, considering Municipal Reform to move, as regards cities and towns, in parallel lines with tithes as regards rural districts. He deemed these measures of Municipal Reform for the three kingdoms so important, that if his Majesty's present Ministry had accomplished nothing beyond them for the protection and contentment of the people, they would well requite the exertions made by the people to place and replace them in power, and where the people would assuredly keep them if they continued to do as they have done and promise to do. He considered this measure alike valuable to all classes—to the rich as well as to the poor; for that every class was interested in being in a condition to procure good government for the place where he resided, where his family resided, and perhaps his property was situated; where, too, a considerable portion of his political franchises were called into exercise, and where experience showed that these franchises might be protected or obstructed according to the conduct of the municipal authorities, or, in other words, according to their responsibility or irresponsibility; but, however valuable to the rest, it was the very palladium of the rights and protection of the poor man. Of our higher institutions the poor man knew little or nothing; but with municipal institutions he came into contact every day, and every hour of the day, which rendered municipal government, as regarded him, either the greatest blessing or the greatest curse, according as it was well or ill administered. If this and similar measures of improvement did not emanate from "representative" reform, it were better that measure never had passed; because it would only add the bitterness of disappointment to pre-existing evils: it would be like a tree pleasing and promising to view, but quite defective of fruit. At the commencement of his observations respecting corporate misgovernment in Limerick, he used the epithet "heretofore," because he was ready and glad to admit that things have changed much for the better—partly, no doubt, owing to the progressive improvement in human affairs, partly owing to the increased control of Parliament and to the publicity afforded by the newspaper press, but most materially, also, to the exertions of his right hon. predecessor and Friend below him, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, who, about twelve years ago, carried a Bill through Parliament for the improvement of municipal government in Limerick, but with the greatest opposition and difficulty then interposed by Gentlemen now at the other side, who would scarcely allow (if he might use the expression) a single hair of the head of these institutions to be touched, whereas now they were ready and eager to cut off that head altogether. Certainly, if those institutions were to remain in their present condition, they might be as well dead and gone, but he considered the vital spirit of good government still existed in them, and that the tree, when divested of the parasitic plants which robbed it of its nourishment and support, would assuredly flourish again. The whole force, however, of vituperation was concentrated for the allegation that this measure would only transfer ascendancy from Protestant to Catholic hands—an assertion the most fallacious—disproved by facts, and by a knowledge of the human mind; for that equality of rights always gave the death blow to ascendancy, while inequality and partiality were its very source and essence. For nearly thirty years the good results of justice and impartiality were experienced and illustrated in the principal parish of the city of Limerick, that of St. Michael, which had been thus long governed by a local Act, freed from sectarian distinctions; the consequence of which was, that any idea of sectarian feeling never entered into the minds or dreams of the Catholic voter, and more Protestants than Catholics had always composed this parochial "representation." So it would be as regarded the whole of Limerick, and every other city, when political justice and non-sectarian principles were adopted as the basis of their institutions. In the Parliamentary representation of Ireland the same fact was established, and had been equally indicated in Limerick, where they elected his hon. Colleague a Protestant, and himself, a Catholic; and where the Roman Catholic clergy were just as zealous for his Colleague as for himself, a fact also that refuted the charge brought against his hon. and learned Friend the Member for Dublin, who eagerly exerted himself for his (Mr. Roche's) colleague. The right hon. Gentleman who had just sat down (the Member for the University of Oxford) said that Corporations were instituted, or rather subsequently converted into, instruments for the support of Protestant ascendancy. However correct or not that proposition might be, things were now entirely altered, for Catholics were put upon a footing with Protestants, and such exclusion of them was a manifest violation of the Emancipation Act. Amongst the corporate body in Limerick, he knew many very estimable individuals; but, surely, it would be open to their fellow citizens to again elect those they may thus deem worthy—a compliment he (Mr. Roche) at least should consider more gratifying than any other species of appointment. He felt that he had occupied a considerable share of the House's attention, and knew that others at both sides were anxious to deliver their sentiments; but before he sat down he begged to say he had received a petition, signed by several hundreds of his fellow citizens, who concurred in the purpose and provisions of this Bill, with the exception of the qualification for mayors, which they deemed too high, and therefore calculated to exclude many very eligible persons from attaining that office; and the number of councillors they consider also rather too limited, but on the whole express their warm hope that the Bill may pass. The hon. Member concluded by quoting a saying of Louis 14th of France to King James 2nd, when leaving the shores of that country with a view to regain the throne of these realms, when the French king said the best wish he could offer him (King James) was, that he might never see him again. He was certainly glad that wish was not realized, for that monarch was unworthy to reign over a free people; but with a different result he (Mr. Roche) applied the same wish in reference to this Bill—namely, that when it left these walls they might never see it again, until at least it received the royal assent.

Mr. Ewart

Sir, I cannot but consider that the hon. Gentleman, the Member for the University of Oxford, has not answered satisfactorily the hon. Member for St. Alban's. The hon. Gentleman said, that the question proposed was not upon the principle of the Bill, but whether or not the Irish Corporations should be altogether abolished. Now, I ask, if the hon. Gentleman objected to the principle of the Bill, why did he not take the opportunity of opposing the second reading of the Bill? The proper course would have been not for the hon. Baronet to have contented himself merely with saying "No!" but to have divided the House upon the second reading, he would thus have vindicated himself from the charge of inconsistency, which, I must say, he has not refuted satisfactorily. Sir, the hon. Baronet, referring to the case of the reverend Joshua King, said that was only an isolated instance. I would recall to the recollection of my hon. Friend those scenes which have recently occurred in the most learned University; scenes, I think, not entirely characterized by that charitable spirit which the hon. Baronet seemed inclined to impute to all the clergy of the Church of England. Sir, a great deal has been said about the voluntary renunciation of power by the minority over the majority in Ireland. Why, Sir, has it been a voluntary renunciation? to come forward now that that power is receding from their grasp, and claim credit for relinquishing that which they were unable to retain, exhibits, I think, a degree of confidence almost unprecedented in political history. The right hon. and learned Gentleman, the Member for the University of Dublin, has gone back into old charters, and told us what Ireland was under the old system. Sir, the abuses of former times are no arguments for misgovernment in modern; and the argument that because Ireland was denied justice of old, that, therefore, she is to be denied it now, is one which, however conclusive it may be to the right hon. Gentleman, will, I am sure, be indignantly rejected by the people of this country. The right hon. Member had declaimed at great length against the ascendancy of a majority in Ireland. In what country, I would ask, that claims the semblance of possessing popular rights, does not the majority govern the minority? I never heard, even in declamations upon monarchical institutions, that they were not fundamentally based upon the wishes of the majority of a nation. I cannot conceive that in this free country we can have any other mode of governing satisfactorily. I am quite convinced there is no other mode of governing either England or Ireland with success. One circumstance connected with the government of the majority ought not to be forgotten, that the government of a majority is much less likely to be tyrannical than the government of a minority. The government of a minority must always be a government of weakness; and a government of weakness partakes of all the danger and distrust of tyranny; and must have recourse to tyrannical modes of supporting its power. But the government of a majority requires no such violent means of support, and, therefore, tranquillity and liberty are much more likely to prevail under the government of a majority than that of a minority. I regret that I do not see present the right hon. Baronet the Member for Tamworth, considering that he was, if I may so say, the original sponsor of this measure. He originated Catholic Emancipation, which has been the forerunner of all that has subsequently occurred; and I should have liked to ask him how, having himself carried that measure, he is determined to oppose the effect naturally consequent upon it? how, having granted Ireland religious and political liberty, he can refuse to give her municipal liberty? how, in short, having granted the beginning, he can refuse her the consummation of freedom? Sir, I cannot, I must say, imagine how hon. Gentlemen who are, they tell us, for holding fast to the genuine spirit of the British Constitution, are for doing that which is contrary to its very genius, to abolish the municipal institutions of Ireland; for removing those institutions which dated from the very earliest dawn of that Constitution; for deserting it in the very moment of its extreme distress. The genius of the Government of this country is municipal as well as political. The opinion of Mr. Burke was quoted upon the Spanish question by an hon. Gentleman opposite. That opinion was to the effect, that "if you destroy in any country its local institutions, you have in centralization the most convenient instrument for arbitrary power." Now, all the opponents of Irish Corporation Reform are the friends of that centralization which Mr. Burke so strongly denounced. How can they possibly expect tranquillity in Ireland if they do her the injustice of refusing her Municipal Reform?—those institutions which should become not only "normal schools" for peaceful agitation, but schools in which her citizens should learn the exercise of their rights peaceably but firmly. If you give them religious freedom, if you grant them political liberty, and refuse them Municipal Reform, what is it but conceding to them the object for which they contend, and denying them the means of learning the proper and legitimate use of the instruments you have thus put into their hands. This measure will become, as it were, a safety-valve to the Constitution. By the discussion of home and local concerns, the vehemence of general political discussion will be lessened; and, by allowing the people of Ireland free representation in their municipalities, you will be giving them that political education which will enable them to exercise properly and peaceably those rights which you have already granted them. With what object do we legislate for Ireland? Is it not for its peace?—and how else is that object to be obtained but by the contentment of the people? The rejection of this measure will increase ten-fold the excitement there, First of all, it will give cause for disturbance; and, secondly, it will offer an apology for every outrage committed until the measure is conceded. Sir, I rejoice that upon this occasion the English Members have an opportunity of proving how deeply they feel the debt of gratitude due to the Irish Members of this House. Most warmly, fully, freely, and generously have the Irish Members supported us in all the great measures that have passed this House of late years. Ever since I have had the honour of a seat in this House, I have ever seen our Irish friends the most strenuous supporters of freedom, never hesitating when we wanted their assistance; and I, for one, should feel myself guilty of the blackest ingratitude if I was not most ready to aid them in the hour when they need my co-operation. I trust, and I believe, that the English people will contribute their support to their Irish fellow-citizens, as warmly as the English Members do to their representatives in this House; and that a day at length will dawn upon Ireland, which shall see her not only freed from political and religious fetters, but enjoying the full sunshine of municipal freedom; that a glorious day shall yet arrive which shall see England, Scotland, and Ireland all united in spirit, as well as by statute, and all alike free in their religious, political, and municipal institutions.

Mr. Finch

would yield to no one in his desire to benefit Ireland; but, before legislating upon any question, he was bound to consider the condition of the country. It was a country divided by faction, and between it and England there was no analogy to fit them for the same institutions. In this opinion he was borne out by what the right hon. the Chancellor of the Exchequer had said upon the subject of the repeal of the Union. That right hon. Gentleman had stated it as his opinion, that if there were to be a domestic legislature in Ireland the war between the two great parties in that country would be a war of extermination. Now, how much greater would be the contention if it carried itself into every town and borough of that country? How would it increase the agitation? Agitation was at present confined to Roman Catholics, who were organised for the purpose. If this measure passed, it would also extend to the Protestants, who, of course, would also organise. A reference to a book written by the hon. Member for Water-ford (Mr. Wyse) would show that there was a strong republican party in Ireland and a strong democratic feeling. Now the object of that party could only be effected by dissolving the connexion between the two countries, and getting rid of the Protestant Establishment and the Protestant aristocracy. Besides the authority of the Chancellor of the Exchequer, the proceeding of the hon. and learned Member for Dublin furnished another proof of the extent to which the democratic principle was endeavoured to be pushed. That hon. and learned Gentleman had, in various parts of England, endeavoured to bring into disrepute one portion of the Constitution. The Chancellor of the Exchequer had, on a former occasion, expressed himself opposed to the extension of the democratic principle in Ireland, because of the strong leaning towards Republicanism which existed in that country. What was the present proposed measure but an extension and increase of the democratic power? The effect of this measure would certainly be a tendency to weaken the power of the Monarchy. He was not opposed in the abstract either to the democratic, the republican, the monarchical, or the aristocratic principles. On the contrary, he wished to see them all blended in a mixed and limited Government. He wished to find each operating as a check upon the others, and the result of such a combination would, in his opinion, produce liberty. Perhaps some thirty years hence when Ireland was less subject to political tumults and agitation, it might be safe to commit the exercise of municipal rights to the hands of those to whom it was to be confided by the present Bill; but at this moment it would be attended with the greatest danger. What he wanted to give to Ireland was, equal rights and equal security for life and property, and such a code of municipal Government as should ensure, not the contests and triumphs of faction, but the due supremacy of the law, the just maintenance of the rights of the Crown, and the exercise of good government.

Mr. Montesquieu Bellew

trusted the House would excuse him while he trespassed a few minutes on their attention on the present occasion as an Irish Member, to whom the measure of Corporate Reform was naturally a matter of great interest, and also as living immediately adjoining a corporate town. Indeed, he might say, that the town he alluded to was within the limits of the county which he had the honour to represent, and that town appeared, from the Report of the Commissioners, to possess an adequate share of all the evils which are usually complained of in such localities, and to have fully participated in that indistinct perception of the rights of property which appeared such a common failing in Irish Corporations. With regard to this Corporation, namely, Drogheda, he wished to to make one observation in particular in reply to the statement of the hon. Member who, for the present, represents that town. With respect to the charge of sectarian illiberality as regarded that Corporation, the hon. Gentleman said, it was best answered by the fact, that when corporation property was to be let or otherwise disposed of, it was offered to general competition, without regard to whom might become the purchaser, or to what sect or religion he might belong. Now, how stood the fact? The universal practice, up to the year 1833, was to let the lands solely and exclusively to freemen, which of course excluded Catholics. But what did the Report state further? It appeared that freemen frequently bade in trust for Catholics, and, in many instances, freemen, immediately on obtaining leases, sold them underhand to Catholics for a trifling profit. Finding it impossible to uphold exclusive bidding, or to check the system of evading the rules, the Corporation resolved upon finally sanctioning what they had no longer the power to prevent. But freemen were, to the present moment, entitled to renewal of their leases at one-fourth of their value; and this was what the hon. Member called no sectarian illiberality. That in this particular borough there were rather singular ideas held of the responsibility of office, might be gathered from the following statement in the Report for the year 1827. The Harbour Commissioners ordered that the collector be required to make a return of the number of vessels which entered the port, their tonnage, and other matters; on which occasion the collector was alleged to have answered that it was very un-gentleman like to require accounts to be kept. But the House was, no doubt, already wearied of hearing of the misdoings of Irish Corporations. He should not, therefore, say one word more on the subject. There was no one on any side of the House who defended the Corporations as at present constituted, and the only question, therefore, was as to the manner in which they should be constituted for the future. Now, after having been present at the whole discussion, and listened most attentively to every statement that had been brought forward by hon. Gentlemen opposite, it did appear to him that the beginning and end of the whole argument, disguised as it might be under one name or other, amounted to this, that the middle class in Ireland will gain a considerable increase of power by this Bill, and that class unfortunately happens to be Catholic. The crime of the Catholics was literally that they were the majority of the people; and what little success had attended the efforts to lessen that majority is strikingly exemplified by the Report now on the Table, from which it appeared that in a borough where within the last century a resolution to fine a suspected Papist was passed, out of the present population of 2,000, more than one-half, namely 1,200, were Catholics. Why, he believed, this was the only legislative assembly in Europe where this question would at the present moment be debated on religious grounds. It is quite true that hon. Gentlemen had taken the greatest trouble to disclaim sectarian motives, and yet there had hardly been a speech on which something about Catholic and Protestant had not been introduced, not omitting the right hon. Baronet, the Member for Cumberland, who reminded the House how nobly their ancestors had contended against the Spaniard and the Austrian in defence of the Protestant faith, and who cautioned them to do anything rather than submit to the tyrannical spirit of Catholic domination. There was no doubt this Bill would add considerable local influence to the town population. The increased power it would give in returning Members to this House, was, however much overrated. He did not ask hon. Gentlemen opposite to agree with him; but he would ask them if they did not think it very natural that the Catholics, who had hitherto been an excluded body, should press very ardently for those rights which had already been conceded to the rest of the empire? or did they believe that it was in the power of this country for any time to prevent Ireland from attaining that to which, backed by a majority of this House, she thought she was entitled? The gallant Officer, the Member for Launceston, had laid much stress on the evidence of the Intimidation Committee. But making him a present of the whole of it, and passing over the notoriously partial extracts with which he favoured the House, what did it prove? That so strongly was the desire in Ireland to return Members favourable to Municipal and Church Reform, that there was no extremity to which the people were not willing to go to obtain their object. He did think that the opposition to the present Bill, and the grounds on which that Supposition was founded, by the very party who granted Emancipation, was a sufficient apology to the Irish people for not feeling very grateful to those who had, by their own confession, yielded only to a stern necessity; but such, unfortunately, had always been the case with regard to Ireland. The Emancipation Bill, the Reform Bill, the Tithe Bill, the present measure, had all been considered, not with a view to what justice required, but what necessity demanded; not with a view to what might be granted with advantage, but how much might be refused with safety. With regard to the alterations which this Bill had undergone in Committee, he could not help expressing his regret that his Majesty's Ministers should have yielded on the question of the appointment of Magistrates; but in town-councils, as he feared, this concession would be taken advantage of in another place; still he must say, that if this Bill passed into a law, it would have the effect of doing away with a grievance which, next to the tithe system, pressed most heavily on the country, and would prove to the Irish people that the affectionate confidence with which they had relied on the intentions of his Majesty's Government had not been misplaced.

Major Cumming Bruce

eulogised in the highest terms the speeches of the noble Lord the Member for North Lancashire, and the right hon. Baronet the Member for Cumberland, on a previous occasion. Notwithstanding the worn-out jokes of the hon. and learned Member for Dublin, and the quotations from the new drama of "Where is he now?" of the hon. and learned Member for Tipperary, they had proved most convincing to the public, and set the true merits of the question in the clearest point of view. Nothing but the most conscientious apprehension of danger to our religious and political institutions could have induced the noble Lord and the right hon. Baronet to take that course. It was the fashion on the other side of the House to taunt the Opposition with what was called the strange conjunction which had taken place between the noble Lord, the Member for North Lancashire, the right hon. Baronet the Member for Cum- berland, and the right hon. Baronet the Member for Tamworth. Why had these two eminent persons opposed themselves to the measures, of those with whom they were formerly associated, but because they were convinced that those measures were pernicious? Why had they renounced place, but because they could not conscientiously hold it on those terms? Hon. Gentlemen opposite had, indeed, clung to place, but they had not clung to power. There was a wide difference between place and power, which they did not seem to be aware of; but which they would hereafter discover. They might carry the measure through this House, but there was another tribunal to which it must be submitted.—He did not mean the House of Lords, though he did not doubt but that House would, as it always had done, perform its duty conscientiously, uprightly, and firmly; but he alluded to the great majority of the enlightened and reflecting people of the empire. The delusion of spurious and falsely so called liberality was fast passing away. The people were beginning to be thoroughly alive to the restless character of the Catholic party, which seemed as though it would be satisfied with nothing less than domination, and they were resolved that the supremacy of the Protestant character of our institutions, connected as it was with the most perfect toleration and the maintenance of the best interests of the empire, should be preserved. He deprecated those continual attempts to place unbounded political power in the hands of the Catholic priests, for that no man living would doubt would be the result of this Bill. He warned them that if the Protestant people of these kingdoms saw that no concession could stop unreasonable demands, and that every stride of the Catholics towards political power was but the precursor of another, it would ultimately awaken a demand for a repeal of that measure of Catholic Emancipation which had been so vainly held out to them as the only effectual means of pacifying Ireland. Hon. Members on the other side accused his friends of raising a "No Popery" cry, whereas it was they themselves who raised it, by the introduction of such measures as this. The Catholic party were not content with equality—they wanted supremacy; and they looked upon this measure but as an instalment of their full demand, which was nothing less, he believed, than the absolute domination of Catholicism, and the repeal of the Union. If there were no other grounds for his resistance to this Bill, than the declaration of the hon. Gentleman opposite, that this Bill was to be an instalment of the debt due to the Catholics of Ireland, by which, of course, was meant repeal of the Union, and the utter subversion of Protestantism in that country, that would be his sufficient justification. If it were brought forward against him as an accusation that he wished to draw a distinction between the toleration of the Protestant religion and the intolerance of the Catholic, he would plead guilty to the charge. It was not by unjust attacks on a large and influential party, attributing motives to them which they rejected—it was not by holding up to obloquy men worthy of the best days of the Reformation, for no other offence than that they drew aside the veil of Jesuitism, and exposed the machinations and general character of Popery—men, as superior to their calumniators as daylight was to those tapers—that men could be reconciled to Popery; but it was by giving Popery the form of real goodwill to all, and the character of toleration, that the fears of Protestants could be removed. He would next refer to the oath taken by Catholics in that House. The interpretation of an oath was a matter between a man and his own conscience. The subject might not be palatable to some gentlemen on the other side, but he would maintain that the object and the intention of that oath, which was purely restrictive, was to exclude Catholics from voting on any question that might endanger the safety of Protestantism in Ireland. The object of the present Bill was to create a dominant Catholic party in Ireland, and its tendency would be to establish the supremacy of Popery there, and with this to destroy the supremacy of the King. If these attacks were continued they would force on Protestants a reconsideration of the whole Catholic question. He was not actuated by any hostility towards the Catholics as individuals. Many of them he knew to be men equal to Protestants in all Christian virtues; but he could not conceal the fact that in the minds of the great mass of the Catholics, Popery and supremacy were united—a doctrine that was inconsistent with the constitution of a free State, and with the maintenance of liberty. It was not on account of any private difference of religious opinion, but from the tendency of Popery affecting the liberties of the people, that the Reformers raised the superstructure of freedom of conscience and of action. The hon. Member for Dublin made frequent allusion to the exertions of the Scotch, and to their drawing the sword of the Lord and of Gideon against episcopacy, holding out this example for the destruction of Protestantism in Ireland. But the learned Gentleman ought to know, what every schoolboy knew, that the Scotch objected to episcopacy from its too near approximation to Popery. The higher classes were anxious for the preservation of their feudal privileges and liberties; the lower classes resisted episcopacy from a fear of the perpetuation of religious despotism.—At the meeting which the King was forced to convene, the influence of the Presbyterian Clergy was nothing compared with that of the laity. It was this fear of episcopalian domination that was the cause of the covenant. But did it follow that the Scotch, fearing before trial the evil effects of the episcopacy at home, looked on it now, after having seen its workings, as an evil in Ireland? He would tell the hon. Member that the intelligent Presbyterians of Scotland considered it as the only safeguard against the encroachments and the tyranny of the Church of Rome, and the only security for the existence of Protestantism in that country. The question before the House in truth was, the establishment of Popery under its old form of religious and political despotism in Ireland. Will the Government say so or not? Mr. O'Connell, the real leader of the House, did fairly allow that Catholic ascendancy was at the bottom of the question. The question was one of vital importance to the social, the religious, and political condition of the Sister Kingdom, and could not fail to infuse its effects into Great Britain, and to the good sense of the enlightened people of the empire at large he would not fear to leave its decision.

Mr. Vernon Smith

—Sir; The hon. Gentleman who has just sat down has only stated a part of the case—the part that suited his own purpose. I shall not follow the hon. Gentleman through all the points of his argument; and through some I should be sorry to follow him After the subject had been already fully debated as a whole, and in all its parts, the debate must prove very uninteresting; but certainly the facetiousness of the hon. Gentleman has much enlivened it. The hon. Gentleman was very liberal of his entreaties to the Government, but I would beg of him to forbear accompanying these entreaties with insults when next he favours us with his advice.—Sir; The burden of the hon. Gentleman's speech still more surprised me than those outward ornaments with which he embellished it. It was this; That whereas the Catholic Relief Bill had passed, and the Irish Reform Bill had passed, and still "Protestant ascendancy" remained, that this measure was to destroy it; that is, he allowed that it was not endangered by the passing of bills which gave the Catholics of Ireland the unrestricted right of being elected, and of electing members to serve in the British Parliament, but when called upon to enact a measure that shall allow them to elect their own aldermen, mayors, and other municipal officers, then he is afraid of Catholic supremacy in Ireland.—Sir; In the few remarks I shall have to submit to the House I shall confine myself entirely to the question before the House; which is, that this Bill be now read a third time, the object of the present opposition being mainly, it appears, to allow to such gentlemen as the hon. Members for Bristol and the University of Oxford, who had refused or disdained to accept of any compromise at all, to give their votes against the Bill. I think I cannot do better than to address myself first to the speech of my hon. Friend the Member for the University of Oxford; and I must say, that holding as I do that hon. Gentleman in the highest respect, and, admiring as I always have done, his consistency, it is with the deepest regret I find in this instance a deviation from his usual character. He began his opposition too late. But if he objected to all reform, why did he not oppose the second reading? Why did he allow a similar Bill to pass the Commons last year? If he was of opinion that no alteration should be made in these corporations, why did he vote in favour of an instruction entirely annihilating and sweeping away those ancient institutions for which he manifests such attachment.—Sir; I am at a loss to understand how any Gentleman on the other side, who voted for the instructions, could now vote for the amendment on the third reading? The right hon. Baronet (the Member for Tamworth), the leader of the party, acted in a true sportsman style; finding he could not destroy the Bill on the motion for the instruction, he changes his position, turns round, and attempts to knock it down on the third reading. First we had a Conservative opposition, then a Destructive, and now again a Conservative opposition. But the real object is to gain a better division now than they had upon the motion for the instruction, and to send it forth to the country, or to the other House of Parliament, that it may influence their opinions and decision on the Bill. I would ask those Gentlemen who voted for the instruction, and are now going to vote against the Bill altogether, how they can defend their consistency? Every one of them, by voting for the instruction, have admitted practically the disease. There can be no doubt of it. They did not conduct themselves so upon the English Corporation Bill. There they threw themselves upon the Report of Mr. Hogg, or of Sir Francis Palgrave. There they quarrelled with the Report of the Commissioners; here, on the contrary, though they admit the disease to be so much more palpable in the case of the Irish than in that of the English corporations, that they voted for their utter annihilation, they are about to vote against the third reading of the Bill which is intended to alter and amend them. But they say that the remedy is so much worse than the disease, that they would rather continue the disease than risk the remedy, I know that is the argument of hon. Gentlemen on the other side. Yet the disease which you have admitted here, is the disease which you have amended and cured in England. You did not meet it in that case as you have in this. You applied the remedies proposed by his Majesty's Ministers, and they have worked a cure; at least I have not heard any hon. Gentleman stand forward and say that that Bill has proved very mischievous in its operations. But you say, "the remedy applied in the case of England cannot with safety be applied to Ireland." Why not? "Because," you say, "it will be a transfer of power from one party to another." That such will be in some degree its effects in Ireland I will admit; but then I say, the same argument, if valid, will apply with ten-fold force to England. In this country the distinctions in politics and religion are not as they are in Ireland. Parties in the corporate towns of England are nearly on an equality; but in Ireland, instead of being a transfer of power, as it has been in England, from one party to another, almost on the same footing, it will be a transfer from the few to the many—from the small party to the large—from the minority to the majority. I am not prepared to deny that: on the contrary I admit it, and will defend it. I say, that the transfer of power to the immense majority in a country, is a principle from which you cannot escape, unless, indeed, you can prove that the majority are in such a low condition that they are unfit for the possession of civil power. [Loud cheering from the Opposition, in which the voice of Col. Perceval was pre-eminently distinguished.] I am astonished to hear it admitted by the cheers of the hon. and gallant Member for Sligo, that the constituency which he represents are unfit for the possession of civil power. After admitting the great body of the Irish people to political representation, could any one say, that the majority of the Irish people are unfit for power? The Irish Catholics are not to be told that they are fit to send representatives to Parliament, but unfit to elect their own municipal officers. The notion is preposterous. This is a last attempt to retain Protestant ascendancy, and all its concomitant power, in Ireland; when hon. Gentlemen opposite could not retain the corporations in Ireland, they adopted the stratagem of sweeping them off altogether, just as an adjournment of the House is moved to get rid of a debate. Sir; The noble Lord opposite (Lord Stanley) said he viewed the question as a religious one. I admit that such a view may be taken of it; and though I wish to avoid all religious discussions in this House—I think it is not suited for their discussion—I must say it is too late to take such a position now, after the great measure that has already been conceded. The system of corporate government is admitted on all hands to be worse in Ireland than it was in England; and what were its defects here?—partiality, party spirit, gross abuse of the public property to the purposes of political corruption, and general perversion of the administration of justice; and how much more severely is all this felt in Ireland? But then the argument is, that this Bill will throw power into the hands of the hon. and learned Member for Dublin. But I meet that argument by asserting, that when men become possessed of legitimate power, they ate not likely to resort to ille- gitimate power; and that when enabled to exercise political and municipal power for themselves, they will be less inclined to delegate that power to one. It is you who enhance his power! you, whose protracted resistance to the Reform Bill; you, whose tardy concession of Emancipation, gave rise to the agitation of questions in this country never heard of before, and which long years of peaceful tranquillity may not be able to still! It is you who have given power to the hon. Member for Dublin; and by your rejection of this Bill would, instead of diminishing, vastly augment it. Sir; I conclude by expressing my conviction, that the division on this occasion will not be more favourable to Gentlemen opposite than any preceding. I consider that those who voted for the instruction are bound, consistently, not to vote against the third reading; and I beg to remind them, that as there are now no kindly-sent snores to cover their defeat, it will be the more signal on the present occasion.

Sir William Follett

would endeavour to follow the course marked out by the hon. Gentleman who had just sat down, by applying himself exclusively to the question then before the House, namely, whether the Bill should be read a third time; and although he was not able to vote for the instruction moved by the noble Lord (Lord Francis Egerton), he fully approved of it, and was willing to accept the challenge which the hon. Gentleman had thrown out, and to explain to the House why it was he approved of that instruction, and why he was now prepared to vote against the third reading of this Bill. He was the more anxious to do so, because the hon. Gentleman (Mr. Vernon Smith) had reiterated a charge which had been made again and again, that no hon. Member who took part in the discussion on the English Corporation Bill, and who approved of the principle on which it was founded, could withhold his acquiescence in the provisions of the measure now before the House, without being inconsistent in his conduct. Now he did not object to the principle of the English Bill, and he offered that principle no opposition, although he felt bound to object to many of the details. But he was prepared to object to the principle of the present measure. He was most desirous that the House, and the country too, should carefully consider the provisions of this Bill, should compare the Corporations in England and Ireland, and determine whether there were that similarity between the constitution and between the functions, with which it was proposed to invest municipal officers in the two countries, as well as in the social and political condition of the inhabitants, respectively of each, which would render it incumbent on those who voted for the English Bill to vote for a similar measure with regard to Ireland. Let them inquire into that question. They were told, that certain abuses prevailed in the municipal institutions which were found existing. He concurred in an observation made at the other side, that it was useless to extend their inquiry into the origin of these institutions, except so far as that their origin did appear to him to furnish hon. Gentlemen opposite with an argument for their removal, because, whether they looked at those which were established in ancient, or at those which were founded in modern times, it was clear that they all rested on a principle of exclusion. In England the origin of Municipal Corporations was so lost in the darkness of the times, that it was quite impossible to ascertain it with any precision, and certainly there was every ground for the speculation that they had been originally based on a wide popular principle, and that the large masses of property which they possessed had been intrusted to them for the benefit of the inhabitants of the towns at large. But was there any ground for such a speculation with respect to Ireland? He was not now speaking of the property possessed by these bodies, but of the control which was exercised by them; because whether they looked to the old Corporations which had been established as nurseries of civilization amidst the savage hordes of Irish, or whether they looked to the Charters granted by James, under which the greater part of these bodies had been incorporated, they would see that they were founded in the former period on the exclusion of all but Englishmen and their descendants, and in the latter, on the exclusion of every person who was not a Protestant. Every one at all conversant with Irish history must be aware that in the north of Ireland not only were the Corporation Charters granted for the avowed purpose of excluding from the municipal bodies all who were not of the Protestant religion; but in the plan adopted by King James for the settlement of the six northern counties after they had fallen into the hands of the Crown by the attainders consequent on O'Neal's rebellion, no one was allowed to receive any grant of lands who was not a Protestant; and the grants themselves were made on the express condition that the lands were not to be aliened to any one who would not take the oath of supremacy to the King—this settlement was completed by the creation of Municipal Corporations in the newly built towns in the north, and by the grants of charters founded on the same principles to different towns in other parts of Ireland. It was quite clear, therefore, that a strictly exclusive principle was the foundation-stone of the corporate bodies of Ireland, and that principle had always been kept in view in the management of them. But these Corporations, it would also appear, were used for another purpose. In them was vested the power of returning Members to Parliament, and they were most of them created for the purpose of vesting political power in a select body of Protestants, to the entire exclusion of the Roman Catholics. Such being shortly the history of those Irish Corporations—what was now proposed? The principle of exclusion being found to continue to the present day, and its continuance being deemed by his Majesty's Ministers contrary to the spirit of the times, and contrary to what they conceived to be required by the state of parties in Ireland, they introduced to Parliament the present measure. That measure went to destroy the exclusive Corporations in Ireland; not to reform or alter, but to destroy. It removed from power every existing member of the Corporations, and it repealed every royal charter now in force. Everyone of these was destroyed by the Bill; for although the first clause professed to repeal only so much of the royal charters as were contrary to the provisions of the Bill; yet the effect of the Bill was, to repeal them altogether—and he challenged the right hon. and learned Gentleman, the Attorney-General for Ireland, to put his finger upon any one single clause, or sentence of an existing charter which would have the slightest effect or validity after the passing of this Bill. That hon. and learned Gentleman could not, as a lawyer, deny this assertion. The Irish Corporations were entirely destroyed by the Bill—destroyed not merely in the details but in the principle upon which they were at present based. The House had been told, that the intention of the Government was merely to lop off defective branches with the pruning knife, without applying the axe to the institution itself. But it was trifling with the understanding of hon. Members to make this assertion. The pruning knife was not the instrument employed, nor the branches of the parent tree the object on which it was exercised. The axe was laid at the root of the institution itself. Corporations were by the Bill destroyed—entirely destroyed for every purpose for which they had hitherto existed in Ireland. It was tauntingly asked of those who sat near him, "How can you, who profess to be the friends of the freemen of corporate bodies, disapprove of this Bill, which so fully protects their rights?" Protect the rights of freemen! Why, could any men contend that the freemen in Ireland were to form part of the new Corporations? Certainly they were not—they were utterly and entirely destroyed by the Bill. It is true, there were clauses in the Bill borrowed from those introduced by the House of Lords into the English Corporation Bill, to preserve the rights of existing freemen; but they were preserved independent and distinct from the new corporate bodies proposed to be created; and whether the plan proposed by his noble Friend (Lord Francis Egerton) or that introduced by the Government should be adopted, these clauses would equally form a part of the Bill, and the rights of existing freemen to their property and franchises be equally protected; but as members of the corporate body, freemen were no longer to exist—the destruction of the present Corporations in Ireland was complete and effectual by the first part of the Bill—but complete as that destruction was, it was not the part of the Bill from which he dissented. He was far from wishing to appear as the advocate of the abuses which were to be found in the Irish Corporations. Indeed, so far from wishing to support those abuses, that if asked his opinion he would not hesitate to say, that he approved of that part of the Bill which went to effect their destruction. He knew that this avowal made by some of his friends near him had led to the taunting question, of how long it was since this new light had burst upon them, and that they were aware of the defects of the existing Corporations. He was too young in political life for this feint to be applied to himself personally; but, if he was required to say why it was he abandoned the corporate institutions in Ireland, his answer was, that he felt bound to legislate upon that subject in accordance with the spirit of the existing laws of the land. He, in common with many others, had felt disappointed on finding that the Acts of 1829, granting relief to the Roman Catholics of Ireland, and of 1832, by which the representative system of that country was reformed, had failed in bringing about tranquillity or peace; and that, so far from alleviating or softening in the slightest degree, they appeared to have increased the unfortunate spirit of discord and religious animosity which prevailed there, and which was not unreasonably regarded as the cause of the poverty and destitution of its people. But notwithstanding this disappointment, he was willing to carry into full effect the principles on which those measures were founded; and to say that no civil institution should exist in Ireland, to which every subject of the King, whether Protestant or Catholic, should not, both theoretically and practically, be entitled to admission. Such was the determination by which he professed himself to be guided; and it was because he believed that the latter part of the measure before the House would create in Ireland institutions equally, if not more exclusive than those in existence, that while approving of, and assenting to the one part of the Bill, he felt constrained to give to the other the most strenuous opposition in his power. He asked the House to bear with him for a few moments, while he proceeded to consider how far the enacting portion of the Bill was likely to remove the existing evils of the corporate system. Hon. Gentlemen opposite talked of securing—by better municipal government—peace and tranquillity for the country. How, let him inquire, were these results to flow from it? To obtain a correct view upon this point, it was necessary to consider what were the functions of those existing Corporations, and in what manner their administration was defective. In the first place he should observe that it was a mistake to suppose the measure would transfer municipal power heretofore exercised by the present corporate bodies to the new councils to be elected by the people. This was not the case, there was little or no municipal power, properly so called, in the hands of the present Corporations. The Irish Corporations, were altogether differently situated in regard to municipal management from the English. In most of the towns of England the Corporations had the power of selecting their Chief Magistrates, of nominating the Sheriffs, of appointing the Judges of the Local Courts, and of controlling generally the administration of justice within their district. Now, in the case of these Corporations, a transfer had taken place from one party to another by the operation of the Municipal Act of last Session, and what power an exclusive body once possessed, was handed over uncurtailed and undiminished to the great mass of the people. But what was the case as regarded Ireland? Hon. Gentlemen opposite talked loudly of the existing municipal government of the towns of Ireland, and of the powers exercised by the new Corporations in the administration of local affairs. But what were those powers?—where were they to be found? Why, by a reference to the Report of the Commissioners, it would appear that the corporate bodies had no control whatever in the municipal government of the several towns. In England, the old Corporations, not always by virtue of their original institutions, but for the most part by various Acts of Parliament, had vested in them the local government of the towns in which they existed. Was it so in Ireland? Certainly not. With the single exception of that of Drogheda, he was not aware of any Corporation in Ireland which possessed local authority similar to that exercised by English municipal bodies. Let any one look into the Report of the Commissioners, and it would be found stated in every instance, that in the Corporation towns of Ireland there was no municipal control vested in the corporate body, paving, lighting, and cleansing the towns being vested by distinct Acts of Parliament in Local Boards, selected generally from the citizens, without the smallest reference to the Corporations. In most places, the Report says, the duties of police are performed by the constabulary force of the county in which the corporate town is situated. The watching, lighting, paving, cleansing, and improving the town, and the supplying it with water, are frequently under the care of local Commissioners under special Acts of Parliament, or in some instances under the very beneficial provisions of the general Act for such purposes to 9 Geo. 4th, c. 52. In seaport towns, the preservation and improvement of the harbour are usually vested by some Act of Parliament in a separate body of incorporated Commissioners. This system of management, if it worked badly, ought, of course, to be amended by the substitution of another; but it would appear, that so far from working badly, it had been attended with the most beneficial results, and that without reference to either party or religious feelings, the Local Boards had managed, in the discharge of their duties, to gain the approval of all classes. But what was it the Bill proposed to do? First of all, with regard to the administration of justice, what was contemplated by its framers? Was it intended to vest the administration of local justice in the new corporate bodies? It would appear not. The power of electing Sheriffs—of interfering in the choice—or I arranging the qualification of jurors, was to be denied to them. In no way, in short, were the new bodies to interfere with the administration of justice; and so determined did the Government appear upon this point, that it had been proposed to take from the chief Magistrates the authority to act as Justices. Much had been said of the necessity of having an identity of measures between England and Ireland; but where in the ease of these Corporations was to be found a trace of such identity? As regarded the administration of justice, the two measures proceeded on totally different principles; to the English Corporations were given the power of choosing their Sheriffs; in Ireland it was totally different. Did he disapprove of its being so? Far from it; he was most anxious, in all cases, to vest in the Crown the choice of Magistrates; and it, perhaps, was in the recollection of several present, that during the Committee upon the English Bill he had divided the House upon the clause giving the selection to the town-councils. This he had done upon the conviction that to no popular bodies, either in England or Ireland, could with safety be given the administration of justice, or appointment of judicial officers; and he thought the experiment which the noble Lord opposite (Lord J. Russell) had thought it right to make, notwithstanding that clause was expunged by the other House of Parliament, in calling upon the town-councils to recommend the Magistrates to the Crown, had satisfied the noble Lord himself, and he was sure it had satisfied the country, that his opinion upon the subject was not altogether an erroneous one. There were, he was bound to admit, some honourable exceptions from what he was then going to say, but he felt satisfied that the great majority of the councils in England had, in the nominations they had made, been actuated entirely by political and party considerations. He could not, indeed, help thinking that experience had produced the same conviction on many hon. Members on both sides of the House.—To select individuals might appear unfair; but if his recollection served him, the hon. Member for the Tower Hamlets, who but a few evenings ago in Committee upon the Bill under consideration expressed himself opposed to vesting the nomination of Magistrates in any hands but the Crown, did not upon the division on the English Corporation Bill, to which he had alluded, vote with him. Well, then, as it appeared, the new Corporations in Ireland were not to be invested with the power of administering justice, the only function now remaining in the existing Corporations, he thought he had a right to ask for what purpose, and for what object, were they creating these new bodies in Ireland? For the purposes of municipal government they were not required, and they were not, it would appear, considered worthy to exercise the functions of the Corporations proposed to be destroyed. For what purpose, then, were they required? What object were they calculated to effect? Would they not be purely political bodies?—would they not be as exclusive bodies as those about to be destroyed? Upon this point he might appeal to the noble Lord the Secretary for Ireland, who staled in that House, but a few evenings ago, that he believed no one would be elected to the new Corporations but for their political principles, adding to this opinion a not easily forgotten triumphant anticipation, that, under this Bill, very few Tories would find their way into the Corporations of Ireland. He agreed on this head with the noble Lord. He agreed with him in thinking that the new Corporations would be only political bodies; he equally anticipated with the noble Lord that a very few Tories would find their way into them; but he thought the noble Lord might have gone a little further, and have, with equal truth, observed, that if there were few Tories likely to be found on their rolls, there would be still fewer Whigs. He called upon the House to look to the condition of Ireland, and the circumstances under which the measure was about being passed, and he then asked whether it was likely the new bodies would not consist exclusively of one party in Ireland, and that party most prone to agitation, and most opposed to the connexion between the two countries. Then, again, he would ask, why create bodies which must have such tendencies? Had not the policy of the present Government been to oppose all exclusive associations—had not this been carried so far, that a noble Lord at the head of the Government had brought in a Bill which went so far in putting down associations and meetings, as to exclude, except under particular circumstances, even meetings for the redress of grievances? Had they not often of late seen reason to reprehend the efforts of a party in Ireland to keep up agitation; and yet, in the very teeth of former declarations, were they now about legalizing a system which could not but ensure its spread and organization. Would they not, under this Bill, have a regular system of political schools acting in concert with each other; meeting under the sanction of law when they pleased; discussing what they pleased, and communicating with each other in the different provincial towns, and with the parent association in the capital? Why was this done? On that side of the House they were asked why they opposed this measure; he asked, in reply, why it should ever have been introduced? Why should these bodies be created? He had heard no reason for the measure, except that of a necessity for an identity of measures between England and Ireland. But did that necessity exist? Nay, was such an identification a politic, much less a necessary measure? Was there no difference between the political and social states of the two countries sufficient to justify a diversity of legislation? Was it too much to say, that an institution might be harmless as regarded England, which might not be so as regarded Ireland? What was the state of society in the latter country? He would very shortly, and with great reluctance, refer to this point; and he begged to be understood, while doing so, as intending nothing in the remotest de- gree offensive to any hon. Member who might hear him. In the first place he must observe, he thought it wholly impossible to legislate fittingly for Ireland, without looking to the religious state of its people. Was the social state of Ireland at all similar to that of England? Why it was impossible to look into a newspaper, without in every page meeting details of resistance to the law—an avowed resistance of so determined a character, that centuries had passed away since its like had, or could have occurred in England. A day scarcely passed over Ireland without the occurrence of some act of organised resistance to the law; and when he heard it so loudly required that there should be the same law for both countries, his answer was, the laws are the same; but until there was manifested in Ireland the same disposition to obey the law, we cannot have the same machinery for carrying them into effect. Let them but look to the pitch to which the organized resistance he referred to had proceeded, and then say that similar measures could be passed for both countries. Had they not seen it operate to such an extent that an hon. Member of that House, whose high talent and character one would have thought would have secured his return by any constituency in the kingdom, had been obliged—reluctantly obliged, at the peril of his seat in that House—to refuse obedience to the law. Was it possible to suppose that the peasants or farmers of Ireland, who had refused the payment of tithes, had not been induced to that course by the exercise of some influence other than the prompting of their individual judgments? Well, then, he asked, in this state of affairs, were they right in creating these new schools of agitation in every town in the country, and in placing in the hands of that very party who now disturbed it the means of extending their influence. They had heard much of the influence of the priests of the Roman Catholic religion, and the evil consequences which had resulted from the occasional exercise of that influence. Was that an influence which the legislature was justified in encouraging? Did any man doubt its existence or its injurious consequences upon the political and social state of the country? If such a man there was, he would refer him, as one instance of what he alluded to, to an extract from a letter which was to be found in the printed minutes of the evi- dence taken before the Carlow Committee. It was written by Mr. Fitzpatrick, the secretary of the Carlow Liberal Club, and was addressed to Mr. Vigors, by whom it was produced to the Committee. It was couched in the following terms:—"I had a long interview with the bishop this day; he agrees entirely with Wallace, and he has caused a circular to be addressed to the different parish priests to ascertain how we stand in the county; and in the course of a week I am to summon a meeting (private) of a few of the leading men of the county, with the clergy, to meet at my house, at which meeting Wallace will be present, in the mean time you should be on the look out for candidates. The bishop would prefer that you should be the person, on behalf of the county, that should apply to Raphael; rather than allow O'Connell (as the bishop says) to dispose of the county." Now what, he asked, must be the state of that society where a bishop of the denomination to which the great body of the lower orders belonged, was to be found directing a circular letter to be sent to the several parish priests of his diocese to inquire into the prospects of a candidate for a county. At the period of passing the Catholic Emancipation Bill it was given in evidence before a Committee of that House, that by the very enactment of that measure, not only would the wish to interfere, but the power to influence in political matters, would be taken away from the Roman Catholic priesthood. This had been but too convincingly proved by experience to be an erroneous surmise; but, coupled with other information, it had sufficed to convince him that the Catholic priests would not now have the political influence they exercised in Ireland, were it not that they held out some religious pretext for their interference. Now, he wanted to know what that pretext was? Had they any object in view? any object affecting their religion since the passing of the Emancipation Bill? There was none openly professed. It was true that on several occasions very significant allusions had been made to the state of religion in Scotland, and the changes which the broad swords of that country had achieved; but notwithstanding those, and other perhaps more intelligible allusions, he could not bring himself to go the length of supposing that the Catholic priesthood of Ireland had in view to establish the supremacy of their religion in that country. If they had any such object in contemplation, it certainly ought to be at once told them—and that in terms too emphatic to be misunderstood—that they never could or should realize such an expectation. He did not, he repeated, attribute such an object to the Roman Catholic priesthood, or those over whose religion they presided. But supposing it did so chance that they entertained it, he asked would it not be wiser and better at once to say to them that such an object could never be attained? Would they not better discharge their duty to those who sent them there, by at once saying to them, "You shall have equal laws, equal justice, equal power of obtaining your rights, but understand distinctly that the Protestant religion must be the religion of the State?" Would it not, he asked, be but right to proclaim, that such was the determination of the Legislature? And was not the probability that, upon its being so proclaimed, those, if any, who now conceived the idea that the subversion of the Protestant religion was practicable, would soon cease to agitate for an object which they knew was hopeless? Tell them, then, as was told to them when the question of repeal was before the House, that the Imperial Parliament of Great Britain would not suffer a repeal of the Union, or the disturbance of the Protestant Establishment in Ireland, and depend upon it they would soon cease to agitate for either. How immeasurably more politic in the Government would it be to adopt this course, than in one session to frame a church revenue appropriation clause, and in the next to pass a measure having for its avowed object a transfer of power to the Catholic party, who would regard it as a triumph over the Protestant party, who could not but look upon the measure as the grossest injustice to their rights, privileges, and interests. Well, then, in such a state of society—in such a state of parties—with such a spirit of resistance to the laws openly avowed and defended—was it, he asked, wise or expedient to press a measure of experimental legislation? The Right Hon. Gentleman (the Chancellor of the Exchequer) had admitted it to be a risk. If so, why, he asked, try it? For the attainment of some great national object a measure of doubtful success might be justifiable; but why they were to run a risk without having an object in view—why they were to run a risk for the sole purpose of calling into existence a great number of bodies in Ireland, wholly useless for any purpose but those of discord and agitation—he was wholly unable upon any principle of policy or reasoning to comprehend. It was said, that it would be easy to resume the power which the Bill would confer if it should be abused; but he would prefer, as the wiser and safer course, rather to withhold what it was dangerous to give, than to resume it when given and abused. He was sure it was a wise maxim for every statesman to act upon, that power once given to a popular body could not be resumed. For his part, therefore, he was for not giving this power. He was opposed to the creation of bodies which were useless for the administration of justice—useless for municipal purposes, or for any purpose of local government, and which might so easily be turned to purposes of mischief. It was, he repeated, because he was convinced of these circumstances—because he felt that the power thus created would be abused, that the passing of the Bill would be hailed as a triumph by one party, and felt as a humiliation by the other—it was for these reasons that, while he admitted that the present corporate system in Ireland was bad, and ought to be destroyed—while he acknowledged the justice of the former part of the Bill, he was so convinced of the evil effects which would result from the latter, he felt constrained to support the amendment of his right hon. and learned Friend.

Mr. Sheil

said, that the speech of the learned Member would have been an exceedingly powerful one against Catholic Emancipation, or against the extension to Ireland of Parliamentary Reform, but that those measures having been carried, it was preposterous to rely upon a policy utterly at variance with the principles on which they were founded. The hon. Member had relied upon a concession made by the Government respecting the administration of justice. The appointment of the sheriffs had been transferred to the Crown. This, said the hon. Member for Exeter, established a distinction between England and Ireland, wherefore, since you have made this distinction, not abolish corporations altogether? He would answer, that the appointment of sheriffs was an incident to the existence of corporate bodies, and not one of its elements, that Ireland did not require an identity in every particular, but a general assimilation—that she did not ask that all the details should be the same, but that the principles should be analogous; change the architecture of the edifice, but let the foundation of popular control remain untouched. Although over courts of justice an influence would cease to be exercised by corporations, yet over corporations a safe and salutary influence would still be exercised by the people. The nomination of sheriff's was taken away, but much was left behind; the care of a diversity of local concerns, the guardianship of the public peace, the security and convenience of public ways, the imposition of taxes, their appointment and collection, and the management of corporate property. Was the latter of no consequence? Try it by this test, the Drapers' Company have estates in Londonderry; suppose that it were proposed to that Company to transfer their estates to the Crown, how would such a suggestion be received? How offensive then was the project to leave to English corporations their Irish estates, and to strip Irish corporations of their own possessions? I (said Mr. Sheil) acknowledge that I regard the transfer of the right to nominate sheriffs as not only a concession but a sacrifice; and I, for one, would not acquiesce in it, if I did not feel that something, nay, that much ought to be yielded, in order to adjust those questions without the settlement of which peace in Ireland is impossible, and prosperity hopeless; and if, after this step towards a compromise has been voluntarily taken by the Government, the Bill shall be elsewhere rejected, or there shall be substituted for it what Ireland shall repudiate, and if, by this expedient (for it is one) the abuses of Corporations, the vitiation of justice, the plunder of corporate revenues, and political profligacy I shall be perpetuated, the people of England will know where the blame of that scandalous continuance ought to attach, and will determine between the men who are anxious, as far as it is practicable, to extend the benefit of British institutions to Ireland, and those who have had so long and minute a cognizance of those abuses and never applied to them a remedy; and at last, when with impunity they can no longer be palliated, in order to escape correction they have recourse to mock demolition, and send up to the House of Lords a project to which the Commons of England, Ireland, and Scotland, never can accede. I turn from the details of this question to the argument, the only one on which the opposition to this Bill has been rested. All that has been said against this Bill, all that has been insidiously insinuated, boldly stated, ingeniously inferred, and against "old friends and colleagues" contumeliously quoted, can into a very short, and unfortunately, familiar phrase, "No Popery," be condensed. It is said that if we are once armed with power, we shall become unjust, arbitrary and oppressive; that we shall follow the example given us; and that, by a Catholic combination, Protestants from Corporations will be excluded. It is not a little remarkable that two noble Lords, the Members for Lancashire, North and South, who have touched on this topic, should, by Roman Catholics at the last election, have been proposed to their constituents. But it will be suggested that Catholics in England and Ireland are very different. I thought that Popery was in every latitude the same. You have here, however, a very different priesthood you will observe, and in Ireland you fear a sacerdotal ascendancy, which in England you have no reason to apprehend. No man has enlarged more eloquently and pathetically upon this topic than the right hon. Member for Cumberland. That right hon. Baronet, relieved from those nautical occupations from which formerly the illustrations of his eloquence were derived, has recently taken to the consolations of religion; and there is reason to apprehend, from the tone of his late oration, that that ex-First Lord of the Admiralty has sought in "Fox's Martyrs" a patriotic legislation, and that he reads the signs of the times by the light of the Smithfield fires. I do not believe that the speeches of the Catholic priests, to which he has referred, are accurately reported; and if I did, I should consider them as affording grounds for increasing (he estimates, and for establishing a higher class of rhetoric at Maynooth. But mark the inconsistency between the Conservative reasoning and assertion. We are told that there is no connexion between Parliamentary and Municipal Reform; yet all the arguments against Municipal elections from the conduct of the Catholic clergy on parliamentary elections is derived. Now, if the argument were good for any- thing, it would lead to the abolition of Parliamentary not of municipal institutions. For my part, I avow the interference of priests at elections, if it gratifies the noble Lord the member for Lancashire, and the member for Cumberland, and I will add, that in no instance did the Catholic clergy interfere with more effect than in 1831, in order to carry the Reform Bill, when those hon. Gentlemen were in office; and I do not, I own, recollect that on that occasion those distinguished individuals deprecated the sinister assistance to which the government, of which they formed a part were indebted. They were silent on the same principle on which the Conservatives upon corporation abuses so long held their tongue. But how does it come to pass that the Catholic priests enjoy a monopoly of their moral anger? have not the landlords some claim to their virtuous indignation? They denounce what they call the tyranny of the priesthood; but when they see whole families turned out in hundreds from their hovels; women without covering and children without food, to perish; for these droves of human wretchedness have they no compassion; and for these inexorable men who to these terrible expedients after elections have recourse, have they no indignation? But, after all, the conduct of the priests at Parliamentary elections, with municipal elections has nothing to do. What connexion is there between tithes and borough-rates—between the Corporation fund and the ensanguined treasure of the church? On a municipal election, I cannot conceive any one question by possibility to arise, on which the priesthood can take the least political, personal, or any other imaginable concern. But in Parliamentary elections what is at stake? The abolition of that detestable impost which has drenched Ireland in blood—which has produced atrocities from which every feeling of humanity, and every sentiment of religion are abhorrent, and which ought to make certain religious men whom I see before me, kneel down and pray to God every night, before they sleep, that for Rathcormac they may be forgiven. Interfere at elections! Yes:—they were the men who achieved Emancipation, and broke down the power of the Beresfords in Waterford, annihilated the Fosters in Louth, and triumphantly carried the Clare election. Led on by them, the intrepid peasantry rushed to the hustings with the fearlessness with which Irish soldiers pre- cipitate themselves into the breach, drove Toryism from its holds, and of the emancipation of their country planted the immoveable standard. In the same noble cause they devotedly persevere. Never, until the tithe question shall be justly settled, will the clergy of Ireland intermit their efforts to achieve the redress of those grievances to which the disturbed state of Ireland may be referred. But you that talk of the Irish clergy, have you no cause to look at home? Do your priesthood never, in political questions, interpose. I ask the hon. Member for Exeter who has read a letter from a Catholic bishop of Carlow, whether of the Bishop of Exeter he has ever heard? He has referred to the Popish Doctor Nolan—has he no reason to recollect the Protestant Doctor Philpotts? That learned and able prelate I admire for his great talents, but surely they do not surpass his political zeal, which with his religious emotions is associated. All that I ask is, that allowance should be made for the Catholic Bishop on one hand, by those whose cause is so materially promoted by the Protestant Prelate upon the other. If the Intimidation Committee contains evidence as to the Catholic priesthood in Carlow, surely there is very remarkable evidence as to the body of Protestant clergy in Devonshire. But turn to Ireland. Do the clergy of the Established church never interpose? Has this House never heard of the Rev. Mr. Boyton? He is a man of great abilities, with the most distinguished qualifications for popular excitement. He may be regarded as the founder of the Brunswick clubs, and as having been mainly instrumental in producing the strong Protestant feeling in Ireland. That rev. gentleman was a chaplain of the Orange Society. It is proved in evidence before the Orange Committee, that he actually moved the creation of an Orange Lodge in one of his Majesty's regiments. Well, this was the individual whom my Lord Haddington selected to officiate as one of his chaplains at the Castle. Talk, indeed, of the Catholic clergy! In November, 1834, a meeting of the Orange Society was held in Dublin, at which the Lord Mayor of the city of Dublin presided, and at which the rev. Mr. M'Crea recited a poem, the burthen of which was— Then put your trust in God, my boys, And keep your powder dry! Show roe any of our prose equal to his poetry? I forbear from making any comments on it, and shall but observe, that although it has often been mentioned in this House, I never heard it made the subject of Conservative condemnation. Sir, I think that I can demonstrate that every objection on a religious ground, so far as the Church is involved, to Municipal Reform in Ireland, was just as applicable to Municipal Reform in England. It is said that corporations were established in Ireland to maintain the Protestant interest. For what purpose were the Test and Corporation Acts passed in this country? They were enacted in order to protect the episcopal interest in England against the influence and energy of the Dissenters. They were regarded as the great bulwarks of the Establishment; yet those bulwarks you surrendered in 1828 to the myriads of sectaries by which your Church was encompassed; to Baptists, Quakers, Socinians, Independents, Presbyterians, Methodists—you threw open the fortresses of the Establishment to all the hordes, who, with the voluntary principle, are battering your church to the earth; and when we, who are akin to you (for your religion is only Popery cut down)—when we, from whose ecclesiastical escutcheon, your own with a bar sinister, might be appropriately borrowed—when we, I say, demand the benefit of British institutions, you affront us with a proposition which to the Dissenters of this country, when the Test and Corporation Acts were at stake, and when Corporate. Reform was in question, not one of you, not even in the House of Lords, ever dared to make. The Duke of Wellington had not the boldness, my Lord Lyndhurst had not the dexterity, my Lord Winchilsea was not sufficiently excited, nor my Lord Roden sufficiently inspired—it was reserved for us—it was reserved for colonial dependent Ireland, for us, on whom a faction trampled, but on whom, with God's blessing, and the aid of our determination, they shall tread no more—for us, it was reserved that we should be told, when to the interests of the thousand few the rights of the million many can no longer with common decency be sacrificed that both from the few and from the many their national institutions should be taken away, and out of the ruins of the corporations Dublin Castle should be enlarged. Of the Act of Union is not this a manifest infringement? When it is proposed in this House to reduce the sinecures of the Established Church, men cry out and say that the Union is violated; if the whole of the Irish Corporations are swept away against the will of the majority of the Irish Members, will not the Union be trampled under foot? But, it may be said, so, indeed, it was observed by the learned member for Exeter, that before the Union, Corporations were Protestant. He forgets, that by the Act of 1793, Roman Catholics were made admissible to Corporations by law, but that from 1793 to 1829 not a single Catholic was received into the Dublin corporation. In 1829, the member for Tamworth declared, in his emancipation speech, that Roman Catholics should be admitted to all corporate offices, and should be invested with all municipal privileges; there are accordingly two sections in his Emancipation Act to that effect. From that day to this, not a single Roman Catholic has had the benefit of those clauses in the Act of Parliament. By passive resistance, a Protestant passive resistance, the law has been frustrated and baffled. The right hon. Baronet gave us a key that would not turn the lock; and when British justice is about to burst open the doors, he would level these institutions to the earth, and bury our rights, his own act of Emancipation (God forbid that I should add, his dignity and good faith) under the ruins. Sir, the right hon. Gentleman appears to me to adhere to his old Irish policy; and although he carried Emancipation, in obedience to his reason, he is acting on Emancipation, in compliance with those religious instincts which he ought to get under his control. In the course of the last Session, I ventured to address myself to him in the language of strenuous, but most unaffectedly respectful expostulation; I presumed to entreat of him to take a retrospect of his Irish policy, and to inquire from him whether of every failing, and every failure, he did not in his Irish policy find the cause. I told him, that Ireland had a grave ready for his administration, and that grave soon closed upon it. I should not venture to advert to what I then said, but what has since befallen has given to those observations a remarkable confirmation. The moment the Session of Parliament terminated, the subordinates of the right hon. Baronet commenced the "No-Popery" cry. The result of that pious enterprise has corresponded with its deserts. The Parliament assembles, and at the very outset the right hon. Baronet tries his fortune on Irish grounds again, by moving an amendment, and he is at once and signally defeated. A few days elapse and he sustains a still more conspicuous discomfiture. Not in order to give way to a feeling of inglorious exultation do I refer to the dissolution of the Orange Society, but for the purpose of showing the "sweet uses" of which adversity is susceptible, and leaving out the offensive epithets in the citation to point to the "bright precious jewel" it contains. It was a vast and most powerful incorporation, including a hundred thousand armed men, with individuals of the highest station among its leaders, and a Prince of the blood at its head. Where is it now? Can you not derive admonition from its fall? You have seen administration after administration dissolved by the power of the Irish people by the power of the Irish people you have seen your own Cabinet dashed in an instant to pieces, and now, struck to the heart, you behold your own gigantic auxiliary laid low. Taught so long, but uninstructed still, wherefore, in the same fatal policy, with an infatuated pertinacity, do you disasterously persevere? You think, perhaps, that Emancipation has failed. Six years in a nation's life are less than as many minutes of individual duration. You have not given it (what you asked for yourself) a fair trial, and have yourself, to a certain extent, counteracted its operation. At the very outset you entered into a struggle with the son of the earth, "who has rebounded with fresh vigour from every fall;" and, notwithstanding all your experience—although injustice carries with it the principle of self-frustration—although the poisoned chalice is sure, in its inevitable circulation, to return to the lips of those by whom it is compounded—still, adhering to your fatal policy, and haunted by your anti-O'Connellism—still, instead of rising to the height of the great arguments, and ascending to a point of moral and political elevation from which you could see wide and far—you behold nothing but the objects which by their closeness become magnified, and have nothing but the fear of O'Connell before your eyes. You do not legislate for a people, but against a man. Even if I were to admit that he had been occasionally hurried into excesses, for which your impolicy should in reality be responsible, give me still leave to ask whether millions of his fellow-countrymen, and your fellow-citizens (for such, thank God, we are), and generations yet unborn must pay the penalty? Granting him a life as long as Ireland can pray, and his adversaries can deprecate, will he not be survived by the Statute Book. Have you made him immortal as well as omnipotent? Is your legislation to be built on considerations as transitory as the breath with which he speaks; and are structures that should last for ages to have no other basis than the miserable antipathies by which we are distracted? Let us remember, in the discharge of the great judiciary functions that are imposed upon us, that we are not only the trustees of great contemporary interests, but of the welfare of those by whom we are to be succeeded; that our measures are in some sort testamentary, and that we bequeath to posterity a blessing or a bane; and, impressed with that, and I do not exaggerate when I call it that holy consciousness, let us have a care lest to a sentiment of miserable partisanship we should give way. To distinctions between Catholic and Protestant let there be an end. Let there be an end to national animosities as well as to sectarian detestations. Perish the bad theology that inverts the scriptures, makes God according to man's image, and with infernal passions fills the heart of man; perish the bad nationality, that substitutes for the genuine love of country a feeling of despotic domination upon your part, and of provincial turbulence upon ours: and while on spurious religion and spurious notoriety I pronounce my denunciation, live, let me be permitted to add, the spirit of genuine, philanthropic, forbearing and forgiving Christianity amongst us: and, combined with it, live the exalted patriotism, which to the welfare of a great people, and the glory of this majestic empire, of all its wishes makes the dedication—which, superior to the wretched passions that ought to be as short-lived as the passing incidents of which they were born, acts in conformity with the imperial policy of William Pitt, and the results of the vast invention of James Watt—sees the legislation of the one ratified by the science of the other, in the discovery of the mighty mechanist, who made the Irish Channel like the Tweed—of the project of the son of Chatham beholds the consummation.

Mr. Stuart Wortley

Sir, I am induced to rise, though with the greatest diffidence as may be imagined, after the brilliant speech of the hon. and learned Gentleman who has just sat down, to rescue myself, and those who think with me on the present subject, from the attack made upon them by the hon. and learned Member, when he said that all their arguments resolved themselves into the cry of "No Popery." That I do most distinctly deny. I can assure that hon. and learned Gentleman that I am not prompted in my support of this Amendment by any Sectarian feeling for Protestant ascendancy. On the contrary, it is because I wish to see Sectarian feelings allayed in Ireland, it is because I believe that the plan which has been proposed on this side of the House will do more to alleviate those feelings than any that has hitherto been proposed, that I give my opposition to the third reading of this Bill; and I am the more anxious to state shortly the grounds of my opinion, because I was one of those who, from the first agitation of Municipal Reform in England, admitted its necessity, and was resolved to give my best support to the measure from whatever quarter it should come. I am prepared to go with the principle of the Bill to this extent, to abolish all existing Corporations; but the condition and circumstances of England are quite different from the condition and circumstances of Ireland; and the same principles of legislation on the subject are not applicable to both countries. I much fear that the adoption of a measure of this description will serve to strengthen the Sectarian spirit which already too much prevails in Ireland. Even in this country what have been already the effects produced by the Corporation Bill? An exclusive spirit already prevails in the Corporations of England; and if the object of the promoters of the Bill had been to introduce into the administration of justice the partizans of a particular Administration, they have succeeded most entirely; and in Scotland, about which so much has been said, what has been the effect there? There was one circumstance that throws some light upon that question; and that is, that since the passing of the Scotch Burghs Reform Bill, inconsequence of corporate agitation, there has again risen that spirit of religious dissension that has slept for ages; and there is excited in that country now a spirit of hostility against the Church of Scotland, the poor, the meek, the lowly Church as she is styled, sometimes almost equal to that which formerly existed against the English Episcopalian Establishment. What will it be in Ireland? I refer for an answer to the speech of the hon. and learned Member for Tipperary. Did the House perceive nothing in that speech to excite some dread that there might be too much of party exaltation? Was there nothing in the extreme energy with which he spoke of the extinction of Protestant domination, which looked something like an anticipated reversion of dominion? And I ask those who call themselves the friends of Ireland, will you pass a measure that will create such a spirit in that country? I would say a word or two with respect to the elections in Ireland. The hon. and learned Gentleman, in the course of his powerful address, has alluded to the evidence taken before the Intimidation Committee. Sir, I was a Member of that Committee, and am well acquainted with all the details which were elicited in the course of its inquiry. I will not weary the House by quoting extracts from the Report made by that Committee; but this I may state, as the impression indelibly fixed upon my mind, from the evidence I have heard, that, whether from the influence of the landlord or the priest, I feel satisfied that so low a class of voters as that enfranchised for the purposes of municipal elections by the present Bill, will never be suffered to exercise the right of election with perfect and unrestricted freedom. And, Sir, while speaking upon the Intimidation Committee, I cannot forbear to notice one of those topics in the hon. and learned Gentleman's address which he appeared to touch upon for the sake of making a happy allusion, or producing a cheer from Gentlemen opposite. The hon. and learned Member for Tipperary (Mr. Sheil) replying to one of the points made by the hon. and learned Member for Exeter (Sir W. Follett), attempted to vindicate the conduct of a Roman Catholic Bishop, by alluding to that of Dr. Philpotts; but there is no parallel between the cases of the two Bishops. The hon. and learned Member for Exeter read the letter of the Roman Catholic Bishop, bearing that Bishop's own signature. The hon. and learned Member for Tipperary alluded to the Bishop of Exeter, and endeavoured to connect the name of that right reverend Pre- late with a Parliamentary Report (that of the Intimidation Committee), in which it so happened that the name of Dr. Philpotts, or of the Bishop of Exeter, is never once mentioned.

Mr. Sheil

I did not say that Dr. Philpott's name appeared in the evidence before the Intimidation Committee.

Mr. Wortley

I am glad that I have given the hon. and learned Gentleman the opportunity of making that statement. I will make no farther comment on that point. One of the chief arguments used by the supporters of the Bill is, that it is necessary to extend to the people of Ireland an equality of rights. Sir, is this Bill calculated to extend an equality of rights? No. Yes; I say, no. What is it you find fault with in the Protestant Corporations? Is it not their exclusiveness?—a system of exclusion turned to corruption and abuse. And that is what you are going to transfer. I say you are only transferring exclusive power; the exclusive system has been already displayed in England; how much more dangerously displayed then will it be in Ireland? You have already taught the population of Ireland by your "Commission of Public Instruction," that numbers are their strength. Nay, more; that these numbers are a legitimate justification for their appropriating the property which has been devoted to religious purposes; you are about to transfer exclusive power; in the language of the hon. Member for Northampton, from the weak to the strong, from the few to the many; you are stripping the dwarf to augment the giant, that giant whom you will one day learn to fear. For I ask the right hon. Chancellor of the Exchequer, if when he triumphantly refuted the arguments of the hon. and learned Member for Dublin on the Repeal Question, would he have had no more difficulty in refusing it, if there had been laid upon the Table of the House petitions from two-thirds of the Corporate Municipalities of Ireland, bearing the Corporate Seals, praying for a Repeal of the Union? Sir, I protest against the principle laid down by the hon. Member for Liverpool, that the majority must govern this country. No, Sir, thank God, we are not yet come to that. [Oh, oh!] Do hon. Gentlemen know at whose expressions they exclaim? It was that of the celebrated Tocqueville, who well knew the character of that tyranny. The tyranny of the majority is the dread of a republic; and it is only that mixed form of government, which checks and controls that "tyranny of a majority," which can allay the political dissensions of Ireland.

Mr. Gisborne

was reluctant to occupy the time of the House at that late hour of the night, and more especially after the powerful and impressive speech which had been made by the hon. and learned Member for Tipperary. In the first place, he must be allowed to congratulate the hon. Member for the University of Oxford (Sir R. Inglis) for appearing there, that night in his old and consistent character of a defender of ancient institutions. On a former night he certainly had been led to think, that the University of Oxford had fallen on evil times, when he saw its Representatives in that House giving, not an active, to be sure, but a passive acquiescence to the destruction of the corporate bodies in Ireland, whilst at the very same time a sort of popular election was raging within its own walls. Alluding to the policy pursued by the hon. Gentlemen now on the Opposition Benches, he expressed his firm conviction that, notwithstanding all the declarations of the Gentlemen opposite, in favour of Reform, the real principle upon which they had always acted, and upon which they were always prepared to act, was this, that any abuse or corruption had better be preserved, than by its removal to give an increased popular power. On the present occasion, the choice they had to make was between the correction of corporate abuses in Ireland, and the extension of popular power in that country. He believed, that the choice which would be made by the hon. Gentlemen opposite would be perfectly consistent with the whole of their previous career in the way of Reform. When the right hon. Baronet, the Member for Tamworth, invited him to become his follower in the path of Reform, the first feeling that possessed his mind was one of a little distrust in his proposed leader. Circumstances excited a feeling of suspicion. There was nothing in the previous conduct of the right hon. Baronet, with respect to Reform, which in any degree tended to allay that feeling. He did not mean to represent the right hon. Baronet as a general anti-Reformer. He believed, that in many instances the right hon. Baronet was as ready as any one to reform abuses; but at the same time it must be remembered, that the right hon. Baronet had always been remarkably cautious, or even more than cautious, in adopting measures of Reform, which had any tendency to popular principles. In the instance of the Roman Catholic Relief Bill, it could not be doubted, that the right hon. Baronet acted the part of an emancipator, not upon the dictates of his own unbiassed judgment of what was right, but under the' pressure of apprehension. The hon. Gentleman alluded at some length to the arguments advanced by the Opposition on the second reading of the Bill, and contended, that every one of the reasons then put forward in support of the proposition for abolishing corporations in Ireland altogether might with equal force and equal propriety be urged in support of a proposition for abolishing altogether the Established Church in that country.

Sir Robert Peel

begged in the outset to claim the indulgence of the House, not only on account of the lateness of the hour, but in consequence of other disadvantages, which he felt so severely as to render it doubtful to him whether he should be able to make himself audible or intelligible. He had already, on a former occasion, endeavoured to state fully and completely what his views were upon the subject of corporate reform in Ireland; but after the speech of the hon. and learned Member for Tipperary (Mr. Sheil), who he hoped was in his place—[the hon. Member was absent]—in which such direct personal allusions were made to himself, he should be unwilling to allow that speech to pass by without reply. With the confidence also which he (Sir R. Peel) felt in the justice of the course he had pursued, and in the validity of the opinions he had formed, seeing that the speech to the hon. and learned Member had made a considerable impression on the House, he confessed he should be unwilling to permit the debate to close without manfull coming forward to examine the conclusions which were adopted in that speech and to deal with the reasoning by which its arguments were supported. He said with the reasoning, because after all it was only the reasonings of the hon. Gentleman which ought to make any impression on the House. He wished that the speech had been less prepared and less elaborate, because he was afraid that the hon. and learned Gentleman was in such haste to arrive at those positions of his speech which he knew would amuse and delight his audience, that he forgot in the course of his impetuosity to grapple with the speech which preceded it, and which was as conspicuous for the clearness of its statements, and the closeness of its arguments, as the hon. and learned Gentleman's speech was remarkable for abstaining from any notice of those clear and admirable arguments, and for the ingenuity and fluency of its diction. He hoped that the hon. and learned Gentleman was in his place. If he were absent, he was sure the House would admit that it would be alien to his feelings to say anything in the hon. and learned Gentleman's absence, which he would not say in his presence. Whether present or absent, he would always admit the singular power which the hon. and learned Gentleman exhibited, and that he thought Ireland had reason to be proud of sending a man to that House endowed with such rare and extraordinary talent. But in making that admission, he must take leave at the same time to strip the tinsel from the hon. and learned Gentleman's arguments, and endeavour to ascertain what solid and substantial metal they contained. He thought that the hon. and learned Gentleman's argument amounted to this:—first, that he had a doubt whether the dissolution of Corporations in Ireland was not at variance with the Act of Union; and, second, whether the dissolution of these Corporations was not at variance with the spirit of the measure of Parliamentary Reform. The hon. and learned Gentleman also expressed a doubt whether the dissolution of Corporations in Ireland, and the refusal of the majority or minority in that country to participate in corporate privileges, was not really inconsistent with the spirit of the Act of 1829, by which the disabilities of Roman Catholics were removed. Many portions of the hon. and learned Gentleman's speech—those portions which were most loudly cheered, and which most delighted his audience, had nothing, as the hon. and learned Gentleman knew as well as he knew, to rest upon. It might be very easy for the hon. and learned Gentleman, in the course of a premeditated speech, to allude to the course of conduct pursued by a particular party, and to the qualities possessed by particular peers. It might be easy for the hon. and learned Gentleman to allude to the boldness of the Duke of Wellington, the dexterity of Lord Lyndhurst, the excitement of Lord Winchilsea, or the inspiration of Lord Roden. All this it was easy for the hon. and learned Gentleman to accomplish; and although it had no reference whatever to the matter in debate, it was necessary that it should be noticed in reply, lest, as the character of the cheer by which it was received seemed to indicate, it should be taken as comprehending an overpowering argument against the party on this side of the House. Then the hon. and learned Gentleman, pursuing the same career of eloquence, alluded to Dr. Philpotts, in connexion with the Intimidation Committee. The hon. and learned Gentleman knew that he should lose half his cheer if he did not introduce the Intimidation Committee. The hon. and learned Gentleman recollected that his hon. and learned Friend (Sir W. Follett) was Member for Exeter; he recollected too, that Dr. Philpotts was bishop of Exeter; and in order to meet the letter which the hon. and learned Member for Exeter had just read, implying that the Roman Catholic Bishop had summoned a meeting of his clergy for the purpose of considering the most effectual mode of securing the return of a popular Member, the hon. and learned Gentleman exclaimed, "Yes, but I refer you to the Intimidation Committee, and to the part which the Bishop of Exeter took." The cheers with which that exclamation was received were redoubled by those who were not aware of the fact, that from the first word of the Report to the last word of the evidence taken before the Intimidation Committee, the name of the Bishop of Exeter did not once appear. He repeated that these parts of the hon. and learned Gentleman's speech, though very striking and very amusing, had no reference whatever to the matter under discussion; and for that reason he (Sir R. Peel) should take no further notice of them. He would come, then, to the hon. and learned Gentleman's argument. The hon. and learned Gentleman said, "You who contended that the violation of the property of the Church was an infraction of the Act of Union, will you not admit that a violation of the property of Corporations must be an infraction of the Act of Union also?" That question was put as if by a man who felt certain that his interrogatory was founded in reason and justice; but as there was a direct guarantee in the Act of Union in favour of the Irish Church, and none whatever in favour of Irish Corporations, he did not exactly feel the force of the hon. and learned Gentleman's inference, that because it was contrary to the Act of Union to violate the rights, privileges, and property of the Irish Church, which rights, &c. were distinctly guaranteed by a clause in that Act, therefore it must also be a violation of the Act of Union to dissolve other institutions which were not so guaranteed. With respect to the other Act to which the hon. and learned Gentleman referred, and in which he felt a more direct interest—namely, the Act to reform the representation of the people in Ireland—he must say that, although he opposed that Act; although he thought the power it gave was dangerous, yet he must also contend that there was no analogy between a reform of the representation of the people and municipal reform. In the first place, the hon. and learned Gentleman assumed that the Opposition were opposed to all municipal Reform in Ireland, and he exclaimed, "You who are opposed to corporate abuses in England and Scotland, how can you sanction their continuance in Ireland—having corrected them in one part of the kingdom, how can you refuse to correct them in another?" He denied that the Opposition refused to reform abuses in Ireland. They professed their readiness to correct abuses, but they did say that they would not consent to the re-establishment of Corporations in Ireland, and to the perpetuation of similar abuses under another name. They were ready and willing to remedy every just cause of complaint connected with the ancient corporation system in Ireland. Therefore, again, he said that the hon. and learned Gentleman had no right to taunt those who brought forward the Bill for a reform in the representation of the people of Ireland with inconsistency, because, according to a false assumption of his own, they refused to redress abuses in the Irish corporate system. It was absolutely necessary, he apprehended, to the existence of the constitution and of the Government of this country, that an Imperial Parliament should exist. If, then, a more direct control were given to the people of this country over the election of the Members who composed the House of Commons, could a similar power of control be refused to the people of Ireland? In justice it could not. And as regarded the present measure, if they proposed to retain the Corporations in Ireland, and to exclude the Roman Catholics from an equality of privileges, then he admitted that they would be open to the objections of the hon. and learned Gentleman. In the case of the reform of Parliament, it was absolutely essential to retain the Parliament, and as an extension of privilege had been given to the people of England, it became necessary that a similar extension of privilege as regarded the right of election, should be given to the people of Ireland. But on the present occasion the question was, is it for the good of Ireland—is it for the welfare of the people of Ireland—is it absolutely essential to the pure and impartial administration of justice in Ireland, that Corporations in that country should continue to exist? That was the point upon which the two sides of the House were at issue. The hon. and learned Gentleman had referred to the part which he took in proposing the Act of 1829 to Parliament. The hon. and learned Gentleman was well aware that the expectations which were formed with respect to that Act had been disappointed. The hon. and learned Gentleman knew that the most confident anticipations were entertained, that the effect of that Act would be the diminution of religious animosities, and the restoration of political concord. It was in vain to deny that it had not had this effect. It was in vain to deny that there existed at this moment as much acerbity of party spirit as existed during the political disabilities on the part of the Roman Catholics. But, as he had said before on a former night, that fact did not alter his view of this question. He believed then, and still believed, that in the then state of public opinion in Protestant England—with the Protestant mind in Ireland inclined for its concession—with a Parliament so closely divided in numbers, that it was impossible to say what might have been the result of a division—with the Protestant mind so nearly equally balanced—he thought then, as he thought now, that there would have been greater danger to the Protestant interests in continuing a resistance to Catholic concession than in determining to settle that question; and certain events which occurred shortly after that measure was passed, made him rejoice at the removal of all political distinctions between Catholics and Protestants. But the hon. and learned Gentleman's argument was this—"Notwithstanding the failure of all your expectations—and I admit that political and religious animosities still exist, yet they continue to exist because you have not gone far enough—you must make still further concessions, and then the expectations you originally entertained will be fulfilled." Had the hon. and learned Gentleman any foundation for that argument? The hon. and learned Gentleman had found it necessary to account for the failure of the Emancipation Act. He said that it was conceived in an ungenerous spirit, and that, at the moment the Act was passed, we continued the exclusion of an individual, the hon. and learned Member for the city of Dublin, who had been elected for the county of Clare. In considering the whole of one connected and comprehensive scheme, it was very easy to select a small incident in it, and say, "the refusal of this one thing has vitiated all the rest—this ought to have been a prominent part of the measure." But, in the first place, he disclaimed altogether any personal motive or feeling on the occasion. For those who conceded the measure of Roman Catholic relief to have thought that it was any compensation to them to have visited a single individual with an exclusion that could continue only for a few minutes, was a most ridiculous supposition. What they had to consider was, the best method of effecting their object; and upon the whole his belief was, that they took the course most likely to effect the object they had in view; namely, to pass that Act, which was a work of no small difficulty, through both Houses of Parliament. But what was the exclusion of the hon. and learned Gentleman? He was elected for the county of Clare under a state of the law which, whatever might be its policy, actually excluded him. He was elected at a time when he knew that an oath would be administered to him which he could not conscientiously take. The object of the Relief Bill was to provide that Roman Catholics should in future be qualified to sit in Parliament without the necessity of taking that oath. The hon. and learned Gentleman (Mr. Sheil) said, that we ought to have provided that those who had been previously elected ought to have been entitled to sit in Parliament, notwithstanding the enactment of the law, which practically prohibited their sitting there. When they now heard of the intimidation under which he and his colleagues at that time acted, what, if he had proposed that the hon. and learned Gentleman (Mr. O'Connell) should, notwithstanding the law, have been entitled to a seat in Parliament, would have been said, then, upon the subject of intimidation. The hon. and learned Gentleman had said that all feelings of gratitude for the Act of 1829 were lost. He would not speak of gratitude, no gratitude was claimed, for it was the performance of a public duty, for which no gratitude was due. But the hon. and learned Gentleman had said, that all the substantial benefits of that Act were forgotten by the Roman Catholics, because one individual was deprived of his seat during the then existing Parliament; and the hon. and learned Gentleman, by his argument, implied that the hon. and learned Member for the city of Dublin had been induced to take the course he had since done in consequence of that step. Far be it from him to pass so bitter a satire upon any one, as to say, that from personal disappointment and exclusion, he should take a political course which he should not have done under other circumstances. But he believed that the feelings of the Roman Catholics, with regard to the passing of that Act, and their feelings towards the authors of it, were not identical with those which had been expressed by the hon. and learned Member for Tipperary. He held in his hand a letter, which was addressed to him in 1830, by one of those whose political disabilities were removed by that Act of Parliament. It was written soon after the dissolution of the Government of the Duke of Wellington. It was in these terms:—"You have retired from office. A great portion of my political life has, I trust, been fairly and honourably opposed to your's. You have made ample amends for what I deemed your public sins, in carrying the Relief Bill, and applying your great talents and attainments to the success of that truly national measure. You have made the greatest sacrifices that a statesman or politician could be called on for—human passions and human feelings, to the sense of justice, reason, and conviction. While you, Sir, were in power, the humble expression of my gratitude for the benefits conferred on my country by that all-healing measure, may have been, by minds of a less manly and noble cast than yours, imputed to other motives and feelings than those which now animate me; I can have at this moment no other motive than that which I really profess—a deep sense of gratitude for the solid and lasting advantages you have procured for Ireland by your noble and disinterested exertions for her peace and prosperity, manifested by the splendid and powerful aid you gave the Relief Bill in the Commons House of Parliament. Receive, then, Sir, the thanks and gratitude of an Irishman, long and arduously engaged in the service of his country, and who, on that account, may be better able to appreciate the extent and value of the services you have, by this single measure, conferred on Ireland and the empire; and, accept, Sir, in your retirement, the best wishes for your welfare and happiness in that honourable retirement." Certainly, this letter gave a direct negative to the statement of the hon. and learned Gentleman, as to the feelings of the Roman Catholics with respect to the Relief Bill. The letter must have been written from the most disinterested principle, postponed as it was until the day he retired from office. It was written by Nicholas Purcel O'Gorman, late secretary to the Catholic Association. He referred to that letter for the purpose of showing that the hon. and learned Gentleman had no right to assume that the passing of a Bill by which Roman Catholics were altogether relieved from political disabilities, had failed in its healing effect, because it was coupled with a refusal to permit the hon. and learned Gentleman (the Member for Dublin) to take a seat in that Parliament. Then the hon. and learned Member for Tipperary had said—"You passed that Bill in 1829; why did you not pass it in 1825? Don't you know that in 1825 the measure of relief then proposed was accompanied with provisions which you ought to have accepted, but which did not accompany the Act of 1829, and the separation of which from that measure accounts for its subsequent failure?" He was never more surprised than by that statement of the hon. and learned Gentleman. The two measures accompanying the Act of 1825 were—one of them the extinction of the 40s. freeholders, and the other a provision for the Roman Catholic priesthood. The first of these was passed in 1825, and if the hon. and learned Gentleman attached any great importance to the healing effects of that measure, he had all the advantage of it. With respect to the provision for the payment of the priesthood, he had never heard that the Roman Catholics were warm advocates for that measure. He recollected that many of the most strenuous advocates for the removal of Roman Catholic disabilities contended, that an offer of a pecuniary stipend to the Roman Catholic priesthood was little less than an insult to their Church, and he did understand that both the clergy and laity of that Church protested against any provision for that Church being made a component part of the measure of relief. For the hon. and learned Gentleman now to argue that the measure of 1829 had failed, and that the Roman Catholic priests continued the system of agitation and excitement, because no provision was made for them in the Bill of 1829, surprised him, and he should have expected such an argument from any one rather than from the hon. and learned Gentleman. Was there any inconsistency, then, in removing disabilities in 1829, and in now consenting to dissolve the Irish Corporations? The hon. and learned Gentleman, said that the Act of 1829 provided a new oath for Roman Catholics on their entrance into Corporations, and he condescended to argue that the Act of 1829 gave the Roman Catholics a new and special interest in the Irish Corporations; and he afterwards almost asked (for said the hon. and learned Gentleman, God forbid I should ask) whether it were consistent with his (Sir R. Peel's) honour and good faith, after the admissions made in the Act of 1829, now to propose the dissolution of those Irish Corporations. He must say, that in the course of his argument, the hon. and learned Gentleman, trusting, no doubt, to the House being led away by his brilliant phraseology, had drawn very largely on the good nature or credulity of his hon. Friends around him. Why, in another part of the hon. and learned Gentleman's argument, he attempted to show, and very justly, that in the year 1793, the Roman Catholics had, so far as law was concerned, a qualification to be admitted into Corporations; and his argument was, that as they had it before the Union, it was a violation of the Act of Union to interfere with the Irish Corporations. Now what was the enactment of the Bill of 1829? It merely provided, that instead of Roman Catholics being liable to take the oaths of supremacy and allegiance before being admitted to corporate privileges, they should be qualified for that admission on taking the oath, on the taking of which they were admitted to all other civil offices. But how could the hon. and learned Gentleman argue that there was anything inconsistent with honour and good faith for him (Sir Robert Peel) while Corporations were in existence, to support such a provision, and yet now propose—what? not to give Protestants some separate and peculiar privilege; but that the Corporations themselves should be altogether dissolved and done away? The hon. and learned Gentleman had said, that the same objections applied to the removal of the Roman Catholic civil disabilities as were now urged against this measure; but nothing could be more fallacious. What was the case of the Irish Roman Catholics with respect to civil disabilities? Offices existed, and it was necessary to maintain them. But originally every avenue to distinction was closed against them in the military and naval professions, and in civil offices. Was there any analogy between the placing a Roman Catholic on a footing of equality with respect to a Protestant, who had previously the exclusive possession of those offices, and that of saying that there should be no longer any monopoly of privilege to either party in these abused institutions? You say these institutions have been abused—we say they shall be abused no longer; but this we hold to be consistent with the first principle of equity, that if you destroy monopoly and exclusion on the one hand, you shall not, by an abuse of terms, establish and confer it on the other. Would it by this Bill be established? What was the admission of the hon. Member for Northampton, a Member of His Majesty's Government? An admission repeated when cheered. Did he say that it was a great source of satisfaction when he contemplated this Bill, that it would give power to the majority of the country? Did he put his argument in that form? No. He said this—"Whereas, you, the Protestants, have hitherto held power; you being a minority, I do rejoice in passing an Act which shall hereafter place the possession of power in the hands of those who were to the minority as seven to one. In order to point his argument, and to show that the hon. Gentleman did not unwarily prophecy that the consequence of this measure would be to transfer the power from the hands of the Protestants to the Roman Catholics, he stated the proportions of the Roman Catholics to the Protestants, and exulted in the result; not that the Protestant would continue to maintain his fair share of corporate privileges in proportion to his intelligence and wealth, but that the result of the measure would be, by some sort of sinister procedure, an unqualified and unmitigated exclusion of the Protestant. It would be a transference of power precisely to that majority, of which the Roman Catholic population of that country formed a part. Believing with the hon. Gentleman, generally speaking, that it would have that effect—not that every person elected to these Corporations would be a Roman Catholic, but that those who were elected, though belonging to other professions of faith, must, in order to insure their election, be subservient to the Roman Catholics, must promote Roman Catholic objects. He feared that result, and, therefore, he protested against this Bill. Even admitting the primâ facie force of the argument in favour of establishing analogous institutions in England and Ireland, if he found a still more sacred principle intervened, and that the effect of the measure would be to exclude those who had the monopoly now, and transfer the power altogether to the hands of the excluded; he must conclude that the pretended adjustment of the balance was a false one, and that they had no right, under the pretence of consulting analogy, to violate that sacred justice which was predominant over all. He had often heard that these exclusions were the greatest grievances under which the Roman Catholics of Ireland laboured; but if the monopoly were to be transferred to those possessed of the power which physical strength and numbers gave the preponderance, the grievance would be infinitely more galling to the Protestant than anything hitherto felt by the Catholic. He had heard, before this Bill was thought of, of the dangers arising from local partialities in the administration of justice. He recollected reading a letter on the subject of the Lord-Lieutenants in Ireland, addressed by the hon. and learned Member for Dublin, to Lord Duncannon in 1834. The Ministers of that day found Lord-Lieutenants in England, and then appointed them in Ireland, upon the principle of adopting analogous institutions in the two countries. The noble Lord, the then Secretary for Ireland (Lord Stanley) with the consent of Lord Grey and his Government—for whom let him (Sir R. Peel) remind the hon. and learned Gentleman, a grave as deep was dug in Ireland as ever was dug for him, and he had at least that consolation in the tomb, that others who had lauded the Roman Catholics, and had received their encomiums for attachment to their cause, were now treated with the same neglect and contumely as he was. The noble Lord on that occasion had no compliments paid him for adopting English analogies, but he was warned that they might be the means of provoking local prejudices, which might endanger the pure administration of justice. The letter ran thus:—"This section shall dispose of your Lord-Lieutenancies of counties. It should be observed, that we owe the existence of these offices to Stanley. It was one of his presumptuous plans, and as bad as such a measure could possibly be." Let the House observe that this was the impartial testimony of a person given long before the Irish Municipal Bill was in contemplation. These were the arguments by which the adoption of English analogies were reprobated, and by which it was shown, that the adoption of such analogies would never reconcile the people to them, if they were not calculated to place power in the hands of the Catholics. The letter continued:—"In fact, one great complaint of the Irish people has been against the practical operation of local partialities. This, above all things, was complained of in the magistracy. The remedy would have been to increase the vigilance, and particularly the responsibility of the Chancellor and of the Government; instead of which the direct contrary course was pursued, and indeed turned into law by Stanley. He created a local authority, necessarily imbued, either through religions differences or election contests, with local partialities; thus, in its nature, aggravating the evil complained of with justice, whilst it took away, or at least greatly diminished, the responsibility of the Chancellor and of the Government, and shifted that responsibility upon the Lord-Lieutenants of coun- ties." The chances of interfering with the local administration of justice by partizans was here described as one of the great grievances of Ireland, and would not, he asked, the transfer of power in Corporations from one sect to another increase the just causes for this complaint. That was the argument used by us as far as the administration of justice was concerned, but applying with tenfold greater force in this case than it did to the appointment of Lord-Lieutenants who had no power to appoint Magistrates without the consent of the Lord Chancellor. In the instance alluded to, it appeared, on the authority of the letter quoted, improper to maintain the English analogy; yet that analogy was now contended for, and his Majesty's Government distrusted a creature of their own brain. They had given to the English Corporations the power of appointing their Sheriffs, and yet they had admitted that such was the state of Ireland, no popular assembly could be trusted with the election of the officer by whom juries were to be selected, and therefore without a division they had withdrawn so much of their Bill as had reference to that point. They had given to English Corporations the power of appointing their own police—that power was denied to Irish Corporations. Again, they had taken from the jurisdiction of the corporations the ports and harbours of such towns as had ports and harbours. He taunted not the Government for these changes, because on the dictates of their own consciences the alterations had been made. Those alterations diminished some of the objections he had to their Bill; but they served to increase the force of all the arguments against the necessity of establishing similar laws for the two countries. The Government had, by this measure, created in the fifty boroughs specified in the Bill as many political assemblies, and distrusting those bodies had removed from them their proper municipal functions. Why should they not have the control of their police, the administration of justice, and the management of their ports and harbours—all proper municipal duties—but that they were distrusted? In short, what was left to them but the duty of political agitation? It was true that their functions as corporators were narrowed and circumscribed, but the intensity of political agitation was increased by this measure, and if ever there was a scheme calculated to engender and increase religi- ous animosity, political feuds, and laxity of expenditure of the public money, it was that contained in the provisions of the Bill now under the consideration of the House. By it powers were given to the council to tax their constituents for the payment of the salaries of the mayor, recorder (where there existed such an officer), the treasurer, and (in the extensive liberality of the right hon. and learned Attorney General for Ireland) "all such other officers as they should think fit to appoint." He (Sir R. Peel) was very much inclined to think that the predominant party would not use their powers very lightly. He would take one of the towns about to be blessed with a Corporation; Belturbet, for instance, a town of 2,000 inhabitants, was to have a Corporation to tax those inhabitants for the maintenance of a mayor, treasurer, and all other officers that body might think fit to appoint. On what principle Belturbet was included in the schedules he was at a loss to know, when some other towns, with populations of more than 2,000, were not mentioned. Where was the town of Ardfert, much more populous than Belturbet, though it was in the Report described as a village? It might be that the revenues of Belturbet made it desirable that it should have a Corporation. Why, it appeared that it enjoyed a bequest producing 9l. a-year, of which 5l. was required for a debt still owing, so that 4l. was the clear net revenue, which large bequest of 9l. was to entitle it to be taxed for the support of all the functionaries of a Corporation. Belturbet, however, was the lowest in the scale, and he would now take the highest, Dublin, which nobody would deny ought to have a Corporation. The Bill, therefore, most certainly gave Dublin a mayor and town-council, but it gave them no right to appoint their sheriffs, no power to nominate the recorder, that being reserved to the Lord-Lieutenant, and it was expressly provided, "Nothing in this Act contained shall enable the Commissioners for paving, cleansing, and lighting the streets, or the Commissioners for widening the streets, or the Corporation of Commissioners for the improvement of the port and harbour of Dublin, to transfer their powers to the new Corporation." Here then was a Corporation destitute of corporate functions, and what other inference could be drawn from this, but that the intention of depriving the council of municipal functions was for political objects? He hoped the right hon. and learned Gentleman would consent to leave out the latter part of this Bill; if not, as they had failed to amend the Bill, he felt bound to reject it. What had the English Commissioners of Municipal Reform said in their Report? Why, that the perversion of municipal institutions to political ends had betrayed local interests to party purposes. Would not this be the case in Ireland under this Bill? That sentence from the English Report was one of condemnation on this measure, which would tend to pervert Irish municipal institutions to political ends, and through the corruption of Corporations, lead to the demoralization of the constituent body. It had been said that the spiritual influence of the priesthood had caused the removal of Catholic disabilities; that might be true, and it might be a case in which such influence was legitimately exercised. But when the hon. and learned Gentleman went on to say, that that influence caused the reform, could he be surprised, when he admitted, and gloried in the admission, that that influence was exercised for the promotion of a civil object—could he be surprised if they on his side refused to create new organs, by making fifty popular assemblies through which the same influence might be exercised for civil objects? Was it he (Sir R. Peel) who introduced religion into that discussion? Was it he, when the hon. and learned Gentleman referred with triumph to the annihilation of the power of the Beresfords in one county, to the extinction of the power of the Fosters in another, and to the influence of the Roman Catholic clergy? He said, then, for the sake of the religion which they all professed, that in his (Sir Robert Peel's) opinion, it would not conduce to the legitimate influence of property in Ireland, to the maintenance of due respect for religion, or to the safety of the Protestant institutions, to create this new sphere for the exercise of the influence to which the hon. and learned Gentleman had adverted. In his opinion, the elections for these new institutions would be embittered by a spirit of party hostility far beyond any that was excited by political elections; acting, as these elections would, in a smaller sphere, and repeated as they would be more frequently, he believed, in his heart, that they would do more to widen and to perpetuate reli- gious animosities than any election for merely political purposes would ever do. "And, Sir," continued the right hon. Baronet—"and Sir, to conclude, I must say, that after the hon. and learned Gentleman's boast, that the spiritual influence of the priests had been thus exercised, and after the exultation he expressed at the annihilation of property by means of its exertion, I was surprised to hear him make an invocation to that pure ambition which ought to disclaim any reference to temporal objects, trusting, at the same time, that this influence would be exercised to abolish completely that odious impost, as he termed it, in memory of which we ought every night to address our prayers to our Creator for the murders at Rathcormac and other places which he named. If this be the way in which this influence is to continue, if this be the mode in which the Act of Union is to be maintained, you may pass what Act of Appropriation you please, reserving some portion of the property of the Church to Protestant purposes; but you will not succeed, for the hon. and learned Gentleman has intimated his belief that the Roman Catholic clergy will be justified in continuing to exercise their spiritual influence in civil matters till their own ends be attained. Under these circumstances, I must say, while I maintain my determination to place the Roman Catholics of Ireland, as far as they can be, on a perfect footing of civil equality with the Protestants, I will not consent to the establishment of institutions which will be destructive of that equality, and which will afford a new scope for the exercise of that influence, which the hon. and learned Gentleman thinks may be legitimately directed against the existence of the Protestant Church. I do feel justified, therefore, in withholding my assent to a measure which will be the signal for fresh animosities, which will be fatal to internal peace, and which will endanger the security of the Protestant Church and Protestant Establishment in Ireland."

Mr. O'Loghlen

would trouble the House with a very few words at that late hour. He was induced to trouble them at all, principally by some observations which had fallen from the hon. and learned Member for Exeter (Sir W. Follett), relative to the original institution of the Irish Corporations. The hon. and learned Gentleman said, if he understood him correctly, that by their original constitution, no general right was given to the inhabitants of the district, and that they differed altogether from the English Corporations in that respect. Now the fact was, that by all the early charters the grant was to the inhabitants, without any particular limitation. It had been said in the course of Debate, the Irish Corporations were founded for Protestant purposes; he had never before heard it even asserted, that any greater number than forty Corporations of Ireland, constituted by James the 1st, were founded for Protestant purposes. On this point he would do no more than beg the House to refer to the speech of the noble Lord, the Member for Lancashire, in bringing forward the Irish Reform Bill. He would not again make any quotation from it, he would merely say, that it afforded a complete answer to this argument. Of these forty Corporations, however, but seventeen were included within the provisions of the Bill, the remainder having become extinct; the other twenty-three, to which the Bill applied, were founded long before, some of them, like the Corporation of Dublin, claiming from prescription. It could scarcely be contended, that Corporations to which charters were granted before the Reformation, were founded for Protestant purposes. He was aware, that when it was thought expedient to enact penal laws, provisions were introduced for excluding the Roman Catholics from the powers to which, by the original charters, they were unquestionably entitled. The exclusion arose from the effect of the penal laws, and not from the words of the original charters. The learned Member for Exeter alleged, that he took his information from the Report. Now, hear what the other Commissioners say on this subject:—"The general terms of the charters, and the purposes of local utility for which they appear to have been granted, import that the inhabitants of the corporate towns were the class to whom they were addressed, as the objects of royal care and protection, and the proper administrators of the estates and functions conferred on the municipality." These charters contain no exclusive clauses in favour of any particular class of the inhabitants as distinguished from the rest, though abounding in provisions against strangers. They were told, that the Bill deprived the Corporations of the power of appointing Sheriffs, and they were triumphantly asked, what they left to the corporate bodies to do? He would say what they left them. The management of the corporate properly, and the power of levying a rate, limited in amount, for local purposes. They also invested the Mayor with the functions of a Magistrate during his mayoralty, and they invested the Corporation with the administration of local affairs as far as their own property was concerned. Why did not the hon. Member who wished to get rid of those powers propose to Repeal the Act of the 9th of George the 4th, which left in every town a corporate body for the purposes of lighting and paving? The right hon. Baronet had asked, on what principle they gave a Corporation to Belturbet and excluded Ardfert? His reply was, that many towns had become excluded, because their Corporations had become extinct. But the right hon. Baronet had not stated the rental of Belturbet accurately. If he looked to the Report, he would find that they had a small remnant of their old property, amounting to 120 acres of land, still remaining. And here he would say, that it was not fair to argue that, because the Irish corporate towns have been plundered of their property, they were not to have Corporations. But he would try the importance of Belturbet by another test. He would compare the Excise duties paid by that town in 1824 and 1835, with those paid by the town of Tamworth during the same period. In the first period the Excise duties paid by the town of Belturbet were 20,136l.; and in the second they amounted to 23,648l. The amount paid by the town of Tamworth in the first period was 2,787l.; in the second 3,037l.; and yet Tamworth had its Corporation, and no proposal had been made to exclude it. In the town of Middleton, in the same way, the amount of Excise duties paid in 1834 was 82,262l. They were asked what the Corporation of Dublin would have left to do. His reply was, that if their corporate property, amounting to 30,000l., were properly administered, they would no longer have occasion to tax the inhabitants. In one case, in the case of the borough of Youghal, a sum of nearly 600l. per annum is assessed under the 9th George the 4th, for paving, lighting, and cleansing the town, the Corporation having an income of 900l. a-year, not one shilling of which was applied to this purpose. In many other towns the corporate funds, if properly applied, would relieve the inhabitants from local taxation. The interference of the Roman Catholic clergy in the elections for Ireland had been brought forward and dwelt upon very frequently of late. He really thought they had a fair right to complain that some rather uncharitable industry had been exercised in gathering up and repeating any incautious expressions that had fallen from or been attributed to them. The hon. and learned Recorder for Dublin (Mr. Shaw) had on that, as on former occasions, alluded to the influence of the priesthood in the elections for Ireland. He could not help saying, that if there were any one Member of that House who ought to abstain more cautiously than another from adverting to such topics, it was the hon. and learned Gentleman himself. He would assert, and he could prove, that if any one Member of that House could be called the nominee of a clergyman, it was the hon. and learned Gentleman. ["no, no" from Mr. Shaw], The right hon. and learned Gentleman said, "no." He was perfectly sure, that the right hon. and learned Gentleman would deny the fact, at all events; and he had, therefore, furnished himself with proof of his assertion. He had the good fortune to be present at the last election for the University, when the right hon. and learned Gentleman was returned; and he also knew what had occurred at the election in 1832, in both of which the rev. Mr. Boyton took an active part. Previous to the election, there was a canvass in the University. Some three or four candidates addressed the electors. This proceeding was considered by the reverend Gentleman as an improper interference with his borough, and accordingly he published a letter in the Dublin papers, an extract from which he would read to the House. It was dated on the 15th December, 1834, immediately preceding the election, and was as follows:—"And now to conclude, I once before took a similar line, in similar circumstances, respecting the Representative of the University. I was blamed by some; but the public will do me the justice to recollect, that if I had not taken that course, Mr. Shaw would have been ever since out of Parliament. My Protestant brethren will, I know, give me credit for being honest in intention. They will recollect, that I did not act imprudently then, and I believe they will trust me that I am not acting imprudently now." This had reference to the election for the College held in the year 1832, when the right hon. Gentleman was returned for the first time for the University, through the exertions of the rev. Mr. Boyton; and having quoted this passage from the letter of the patron in answer to the assertion of the patronised, he would leave it to the House to decide whether the rev. Mr. Boyton was or was not instrumental in procuring a seat in Parliament for the right hon. Gentleman. The hon. and learned Gentleman had talked of agitation. He admitted, that agitation did prevail in Ireland. He would admit, moreover, that they had both clerical and lay agitators; and, furthermore, that they had in Ireland a description of agitators fortunately unknown in this country—he meant judicial agitators. The hon. and learned Gentleman said, he had been favourable to Catholic Emancipation. He knew he had voted for it, but he could not confirm the hon. and learned Gentleman's statement that he had never joined in the "No Popery" cry. On the contrary, so lately as the year 1831, when he was a candidate for the representation of the city of Dublin, in which he was a Judge, and was opposed by a Roman Catholic candidate, he had his Committee-room, which was situated within a few yards of the judgment-seat on which he decided on the right of his Catholic fellow-citizens, covered with placards of "No Popery," and other sectarian and bigoted placards. The hon. and learned Gentleman had introduced it, and when he (Mr. O'Loghlen) heard these charges made against the Roman Catholic clergy night after night, he felt that he should not be doing his duty if he did not come forward and defend them. The character of the Roman Catholic clergy in Ireland seemed to be the stock-in-trade of every unprincipled libeller who traded on the prejudices of the English people. If the learned Gentleman had found one of them writing such a letter as that published by Mr. Boyton, admitting that what he did was wrong, but justifying the means by the end, what a burst of orthodox indignation the House would be favoured with. One word on the general principle of the Bill. He would entreat the English and Scotch Members to recollect, that if they once sanctioned the principle that the same measure of justice should not be extended to Ireland as England, they deprived themselves of all chance of obtaining any further measures of reform; for if the principle were once introduced, the answer of a Minister, when further reform was required, was obvious: "This cannot be extended to Ireland, and therefore I cannot give it to. England or Scotland." For his own part, he would only express his confident opinion that the measure would be most beneficial, and that none of the injurious results which had been anticipated from it would ensue. He had only one word to add relative to the town of Belfast. The hon. and learned Member for Exeter had said, with an air of triumph, that it was governed by local Acts, that its inhabitants were not dissatisfied, and that it did not require the application of the present measure. He would only remind the House, that they had heard from one of the Members for the town, that the members of the local board had the administration of funds amounting to 17,000l. a-year. But, says the hon. Member for Exeter, the Corporation has nothing to do with those bonds. If he had read the Report he would find, that, by the local Acts, the sovereign and twelve burgesses self-elected, or rather named by the patron, were ex-officio Commissioners of Police, and actually formed a majority of that body. What says the Report as to those local Boards? The powers given to the sovereign and free burgesses, who are by no means identified in interest with the inhabitants, but who were elected by them, are also complained of; and the raising of the qualification of voters for the election of Commissioners and Committee, was made so high, by the Act of 1816, that it is asserted to have made them the representatives rather of a party, than of the body of the tax-payers; the effect certainly has been to exclude a large portion of the rate-payers from a control over the appointments, and expenditure in them out of the last five years. The 40l. house-holders had no voice in the election of Commissions; and the 20l. house-holders, no voice in the election of committee men. The same thing occurred in Sligo, Derry, and other places, in which there were local Acts; the corporate body having continued to get the members named, as trustees and Commissioners, ex-officio, in almost all of them. So that, though the corporate body may not have any of its own property left, it continued, by means of those local Acts, to get large funds raised from the people under its control. He would now briefly allude to the conduct of the right hon. Baronet, the Member for Tamworth, with respect to this Bill. In his Act of 1829, he introduced the following clause respecting Corporations in Ireland:— And be it enacted, that it shall be lawful for any of his Majesty's subjects, professing the Roman Catholic religion, to be a member of any lay body corporate, and to hold any civil office or place of trust or profit therein, and to do any corporate act, or vote in any corporate election, or other proceeding, upon taking the oath hereby appointed. Would he say that he made us eligible to corporate offices, knowing that we would not be elected—that he gave us equal privileges in theory, and in practice exclusion. If he did not, how could he reconcile his present conduct with his conduct in 1829—now coming forward, leagued with those who opposed him in 1829, to prevent Catholics from enjoying privileges to which he then professed to make us eligible. It was not possible to reconcile his conduct on those two occasions. There were other topics which he would wish to advert to, but at this late hour he would refrain from doing so, and merely express his hope that the result of the division would show that the majority of this House would not sanction the principle on which the amendment was founded.

The House divided, when the numbers were—Ayes 260; Noes 199; Majority 61.

The Bill was read a third time, and passed.

List of the AYES.
Acheson, Lord Barron, H. W.
Adam, Sir C. Barry, G. S.
Aglionby, H. A. Beauclerk, Major
Ainsworth, P. Bellew, R.
Alston, Rowland Benett, John
Andover, Lord Bentinck, Lord W.
Angerstein, J. Berkeley, hon. F.
Anson, Colonel Berkeley, hon. C.
Anson, Sir G. Bernal, R.
Astley, Sir J. Bish, Thomas
Attwood, T. Blake, M. J.
Bagshaw, John Blamire, W.
Bainbridge, E. Bowes, J.
Baines, E. Brabazon, Sir W.
Baldwin, Dr. Brady, D. C.
Ball, N. Bridgman, H.
Barclay, David Brocklehurst, J.
Baring, F. T. Brodie, W. B.
Barnard, E, George Brotherton, J.
Browne, Rt. hon. D. Grey, Sir George
Buckingham, J. S. Grosvenor, Lord R.
Buller, E. Grote, G.
Bulwer, H. L. Guest, Josiah
Burton, H. Hall, B.
Butler, hon. P. Hallyburton, D. G.
Buxton, T. F. Harvey, D. W.
Byng, G. Hastie, A.
Callaghan, D. Hawes, B.
Campbell, W. Hawkins, J. H.
Cave, O. Hay, Sir A.
Cavendish, C. Heathcote, J.
Cavendish, G. Hector, C.
Cayley, E. Hindley, C.
Chalmers, P. Hobhouse, Sir J.
Chetwynd, Captain Hodges, T. L.
Childers, J. W. Holland, E.
Churchill, Lord Horsman, E.
Clay, W. Howard, Ralph
Clayton, Sir W. Howard, E.
Clive, E. Howard, P. H.
Cockerell, Sir C. Howick, Viscount
Codrington, Sir E. Hume, Joseph
Colborne, N. W. Humphery, John
Conyngham, Lord A. Hurst, R. H.
Cookes, T. H. Hutt, W.
Cowper, hon. W. F. Jephson, C. D.
Crawford, W. S. Johnstone, A.
Crawford, W. Kemp, T.
Crawley, S. Labouchere, H.
Curteis, H. B. Lambton, H.
Curteis, E. B. Leader, J. T.
Dalmeny, Lord Lefevre, C. S.
Denison, W. Lemon, Sir C.
Denison, J. E. Lennard, T. B.
D'Eyncourt, C. T. Long, W.
Divett, E. Lushington, Dr. S.
Donkin, Sir R. Lushington, C.
Duncombe, T. Lynch, A. H.
Dundas, J. Macleod, R.
Dundas, T. Macnamara, Major
Dundas, J. D. M'Taggart, John
Dunlop, J. Maher, J.
Ebrington, Lord Mangles, J.
Ellice, right hon. E. Marjoribanks, S.
Elphinstone, Howard Marshall, W.
Etwall, R. Martin, T.
Euston, Earl of Maule, hon. F.
Evans, G. Methuen, P.
Ewart, W. Molesworth, Sir W.
Fazakerley, J. Moreton, hon. A.
Fellowes, hon. N. Morpeth, Viscount
Ferguson, Sir R. Morrison, J.
Ferguson, Sir R. A. Murray, right hon. J. A.
Ferguson, R.
Fergusson, hon. R. C. O'Brien, C.
Fielden, J. O'Brien, W. S.
Fitzgibbon, hon. Col. O'Connell, D.
Fitzroy, Lord C. O'Connell, J.
Fleetwood, P. H. O'Connell, M.
Folkes, Sir W. O'Connell, M. J.
French, F. O'Connell, Morgan
Gaskell, D. O'Ferrall, R. M.
Gisborne, T. O'Loghlen, Sergeant
Gordon, R. Oswald, J.
Goring, H. Paget, F.
Grattan, J. Palmer, General
Palmerston, Viscount Stewart, P. M.
Parker, J. Strickland, Sir G.
Parnell, rt. hon. Sir H. Strutt, E.
Parrott, J. Stuart, Lord D.
Pattison, J. Stuart, Lord, J.
Pechell, Captain Stuart, W. V.
Pelham, C. Surrey, Earl of
Pendarves, E. W. Talbot, Chr. M. R.
Philips, M. Tancred, H.
Philips, G. R. Thomson, rt. hon. C. P
Phillips, C. M. Thompson, P. B.
Pinney, W. Thompson, Colonel
Ponsonby, hon. J. Thorneley, Thomas
Potter, R. Tooke, William
Poulter, J. Townley, R.
Poyntz, W. S. Trelawney, Sir W.
Price, Sir R. Troubridge, Sir E.
Pryme, G. Tulk, Charles A.
Pryce, P. Turner, W.
Ramsbottom, J. Tynte, J. K.
Rice, rt. hon. T. S. Verney, Sir H.
Rippon, C. Villiers, C.
Robarts, A. W. Vivian, J. H.
Robinson, G. Wakley, Thomas
Roche, W. Walker, C.
Roebuck, J. Wallace, R.
Rolfe, Sir R. Warburton, H.
Rooper, J. B. Ward, H. G.
Rundle, John Westenra, H.
Russell, Lord John Whalley, Sir S.
Russell, Lord Wigney, I.
Russell, Lord C. Wilbraham, G.
Ruthven, E. Wilde, Sergeant
Sanford, E. A. Wilks, J.
Scholefield, J. Williams, William
Scourfield, W. H. Williams, W. A.
Scrope, G. P. Williams, Sir J.
Seymour, Lord Wilson, H.
Sheil, R. L. Winnington, H.
Sheldon, E. Wood, Matthew
Simeon, Sir R. Wrightson, W. B.
Smith, J. A. Wyse, T.
Smith, R. V. Young, G. F.
Smith, B. TELLERS.
Stanley, H. T. Wood, C.
Steuart, R. Stanley, E, J.
List of the NOES.
Alford, Lord Blackstone, W. S.
Alsager, Captain Boldero, Captain
Arbuthnot, hon. H. Bolling, W.
Archdall, M. Bonham, F. R.
Ashley, Lord Bradshaw, James
Ashley, hon. A. C. Bramston, T.
Bagot, hon. William Brownrigg, J.
Bailey, J. Bruce, Lord E.
Baillie, H. Bruce, C.
Balfour, T. Brudenell, Lord
Barclay, Charles Bruen, F.
Baring, F. Buller, Sir J.
Baring, W. B. Burrell, Sir C.
Baring, T. Calcraft, J. H.
Beckett, Sir J. Canning, Sir S.
Bell, M. Castlereagh, Viscount
Bentinck, Lord G. Chandos, Marquess of
Beresford, Sir J. Chapman, A.
Bethell, R. Chichester, Arthur
Blackburne, J. I. Clive, Lord
Clive, hon. R. H. Kerrison, Sir E.
Codrington, C. Kirk, P.
Cole, Viscount Knight, H. G.
Compton, Henry C. Knightley, Sir C.
Corry, hon. H. Law, hon. C. E.
D'Albiac, Sir C. Lawson, A.
Damer, G. L. Lefroy, right hon. T.
Dick, Quintin Lennox, Lord A.
Dottin, Abel R. Lennox, Lord G.
Dowdeswell, William Lewis, D.
Dugdale, W. S. Lincoln, Earl of
Dunbar, G. Lowther, hon. Col.
Duncombe, hon. W. Lowther, Viscount
Duncombe, hon. A. Lowther, J. H.
East, James B. Lygon, Colonel
Eastnor, Lord Mackinnon, W. A.
Eaton, R. J. Mahon, Lord
Egerton, W. T. Manners, Lord C.
Egerton, Sir P. Maunsell, T. P.
Elwes, J. Meynell, H.
Estcourt, T. G. B. Miller, W. H.
Estcourt, T. H. S. Mordaunt, Sir J.
Fancourt, Major Neeld, John
Fector, J. M. Nicholl, Dr.
Ferguson, G. Norreys, Lord
Finch, G. O'Neil, hon. J. B.
Fleming, J. Ossulston, Lord
Foley, E. Packe, C. W.
Follett, Sir W. W. Parker, M. N.
Forbes, W. Patten, J W.
Forester, hon. G. C. W. Peel, rt. hon. Sir R.
Freshfield, J. W. Pemberton, T.
Gaskell, J. Milnes Perceval, Colonel
Geary, Sir W. R. P. Pigot, R.
Gladstone, T. Plumptre, J.
Gladstone, W. E. Plunket, hon. R.
Gordon, W. Polhill, Captain
Gore, W. O. Pollen, Sir J.
Goulburn, Rt. hon. H. Powell, Colonel
Graham, Sir J. R. G. Praed, W. M.
Grant, hon. Colonel Price, S. G.
Greene, T. Price, Richard
Greisley, Sir R. Pringle, A.
Grimston, Viscount Reid, Sir J. R.
Grimston, hon. E. H. Richards, J.
Hale, R. B. Rickford, W.
Halford, H. Ross, C.
Hanmer, Sir J. Rushbrooke, Colonel
Harcourt, G. G. Russell, C.
Hardinge, Sir H. Ryle, John
Hardy, J. Sanderson, Richard
Hawkes, T. Sandon, Viscount
Hay, Sir J. R. Scarlett, hon. R.
Henniker, Lord Shaw, right, hon. F.
Herbert, hon. S. Sheppard, Thomas
Herries, right hon. J. C. Sibthorp, Colonel
Hill, Lord A. Sinclair, Sir G.
Hogg, J. W. Smith, A.
Hope, J. Smyth, Sir H.
Hope, H. T. Somerset, Lord E.
Hotham, Lord Somerset, Lord G.
Houldsworth, T. Stanley, Lord
Hoy, J. Stormont, Lord
Hughes, W. H. Sturt, H. C.
Inglis, Sir R. H. Tennent, J. E.
Jermyn, Earl, Thomas, Colonel
Jones, T. Tollemache, hon. A. G.
Jones, W. Trench, Sir F.
Trevor, A. Williams, R.
Trevor, G. Rice Williams, T. P.
Twiss, Horace Wodehouse, E.
Tyrell, Sir J. J. Wortley, hon. J. S.
Vere, Sir C. B. Wyndham, W.
Verner, Colonel Wynn, right hon. C.
Vesey, hon. T. Wynn, Sir W. W.
Vivian, J. E. Yorke, E.
Vyvyan, Sir R. R. Young, Sir W. W.
Wall, C. B.
Walter, J. TELLERS.
Welby, G. Earle Clerk, Sir G.
Wilbraham, hn. R. B. Fremantle, Sir T.
Paired off (not official).
Agnew, Sir A. Johnstone, J. J. H.
Baring, H. B. Knatchbull, Sir E.
Barneby, J. Lopes, Sir R.
Bateson, Sir R. Longfield, R.
Borthwick, P. Lucas, E.
Bruen, Colonel Lushington, rt. hon. S.
Campbell, Sir H. P. Maclean, D.
Cartwright, W. R. Mandeville, Viscount
Chaplin, Lieut.-Col. Marsland, T.
Charlton, E. L. Maxwell, H.
Chisholm, A. Miles, P. J.
Cole, hon. A. Noel, Sir G.
Conolly, Colonel Owen, Sir J.
Cooper, E. J. Palmer, R.
Coote, Sir C. Peel, Colonel
Corbett, T. G. Peel, rt. hon. W. Y.
Darlington, Earl of Peel, E.
Davenport, J. Penruddocke, J. H.
Duffield, T. Pollington, Viscount
Egerton, Lord F. Pollock, Sir F.
Elley, Sir J. Rae, Sir W.
Entwisle, J. Ridley, Sir M. W.
Fielden, W. Scott, Lord J.
Glynne, Sir S. R. Smith, J. A.
Goulburn, Serjeant Stanley, E.
Greville, Sir C. Townshend, Lord J.
Hamilton, Lord C. Vernon, G.
Halse, J. Walpole, Lord
Hayes, Sir E. S. Weyland, Major
Irton, S. Wood, Colonel
Bannerman, A. Finn, W. F.
Barham, J. Fitzsimon, C.
Bellew, Sir P. Fitzsimon, N.
Berkeley, G. Fort, J.
Bewes, T. Grattan, H.
Biddulph, R. Grey, Lieut.-Col.
Bowring, Dr. Gully, J.
Buller, C. Handley, H.
Byng, hon. G. Harland, W. C.
Beaumont, T. W. Heneage, E.
Chapman, M. J. Heron, Sir R.
Campbell, Sir J. Hodges, T. T.
Chichester, J. P. B. Kerry, Earl of
Clements, Lord King, E. B.
Collier, John Lister, E. C.
Copeland, W. Loch, J.
Crompton, S. Mackenzie, J. A. S.
Dillwyn, L. W. Marsland, H.
Edwards, Colonel Mullins, F. W.
Musgrave, Sir R. Talbot, J. H.
Nagle, Sir R. Talfourd, Sergeant
O'Connor, Don Tracy, C. H.
Power, J. Vivian, Major
Roche, D. Walker, R.
Scott, J. W. Wemyss, Captain
Scott, Sir E. D. Westenra, hon. J.
Seale, Colonel White, S.
Sharpe, General Williamson, Sir H.
Smith, hon. R. Winnington, Sir T.
Speirs, A. Wrottesley, Sit J.