HC Deb 28 July 1846 vol 88 cc114-80

resumed the Adjourned Debate by stating that it was not with the view of protracting the discussion at this late period of the Session that he had moved the adjournment of the debate on the preceding night. It was because he thought that, under all the circumstances, a fair division could not be taken upon it, that he wished to adjourn it; and he thought that it was for the interest of all parties that an adjournment should take place. He could assure the House and the noble Lord, that it was not his intention to offer any useless opposition to the Bill, because he did not think it right unnecessarily to protract the business of the House. He could not admit that the measure would confer a great benefit upon the country, as the noble Lord had stated; and it was because he considered it would do precisely the reverse—because he considered it would give a great stimulus and a great encouragement to the Slave Trade, that he was about to support the Resolution proposed by the noble Lord the Member for Lynn. He confessed he was astonished to hear, on the previous night, the noble Lord the Member for Liverpool—he who had moved the celebrated Resolution in 1841—assent to the proposal of Her Majesty's Government. He must say, he was not prepared to hear him give such reasons for the vote he was about to give. Neither was he prepared to hear the right hon. the Chancellor of the Exchequer, in a speech of great ability, tell the House that he rejoiced to be able to say, that he looked forward to receive a large increase to the revenue from the source of foreign grown sugar. The debate of the last night had turned not so much upon the state of the West Indian Colonies, as upon other branches of the question; and it was because he was deeply interested in the welfare and condition of those Colonies that he felt unwilling that the House should come to a decision last night, before he had stated what he knew concerning their condition, and the probable effects of the measure upon them. From all that he had learned from practical people on the subject, and from what he knew himself, he should say that he believed the effect of the measure upon those Colonies would be to throw a vast number of estates altogether out of cultivation. All the estates that were of barren and inferior soil, and which had not the advantages of proximity to shipping, would be thrown out of cultivation. He would take, for instance, the island of Jamaica. In that island there were, he believed, in present cultivation about 400 estates; and he had been assured, by gentlemen conversant with this subject, that of them, from 150 to 200 would be thrown out of cultivation by this measure. He contended that the present wretched condition of the West Indian Colonies was owing to the conduct of the Legislature, which had hitherto refused to listen to the complaints of the colonists. He asserted that it was want of labour in sufficient quantity, and the consequently high price of it, that was the prime cause of the wretched condition of the Colonies. He would instance the products of three estates in Jamaica. In 1842, they produced but 75 tons of sugar; in 1843, they produced 100 tons, after having introduced some liberated African colonists; in 1844, 40 or 50 African boys were added, and the produce rose to 300 tons; in 1845, 182 Coolies were introduced, and the produce became 400 tons; whilst, in 1846, the crop of the present year, just finished, amounted to 450 tons, notwithstanding the extreme droughts. The returns from Barbadoes, lately laid before the House, showed that since emancipation the crops had rather increased than diminished, and that wages had also increased; but, unfortunately, since the emancipation the negroes in the West Indies had had their employers completely in their power. What the Colonies wanted, and what they asked for, in order to produce an abundant supply of sugar, was an unlimited supply of labour. The fault lay not with the planter, but the Government. He was exceedingly sorry to hear from the noble Lord that he would not permit the emigration of labourers from any part of the African coast on which the British flag was not flying. He thought labourers should be at full liberty to come from any part, under such guarantee as to personal liberty as the Government should think fit to appoint. Were it not for the unparalleled drought which had been felt in the West Indies this year, the crops would have been greater than at any former period; and it really would be very hard, that because they had been so unfortunately visited, they should be brought into competition with slave labour. The truth was, that a Government ought to adapt its excise to its reforms, and not its reforms to its excise; and though he did not pretend to decide whether it were better for this country to have a few large capitalist distillers, or many distillers with smaller capitals, sure he was that the West India interest ought not to be sacrificed to one or to the other. He had always held that emancipation had fully answered its purpose; and from what he had seen in Cuba, Louisiana, and elsewhere, he was satisfied that free labour was cheaper than slave labour. Nevertheless, he was convinced that the admission of slave-grown sugar would not only throw estates out of cultivation, but give a stimulus to the Slave Trade. The increased importation of sugar to the extent of 50,000 tons, contemplated by the noble Lord at the head of the Government, could not be accomplished without giving a new impulse to slavery. True it was, that we admitted slave-produced cotton, tobacco, &c.; but there was no doubt that a refusal to admit slave-grown sugar had materially tended to check the Slave Trade. If Great Britain consented to receive slave-grown sugar, it was merely idle to keep up her expensive extensive establishment to put an end to the traffic in negroes, since it was only undoing with one hand what she did with the other. He was confident that the West India body would be willing to make considerable sacrifices; but he regretted to see a Minister of the Crown boast of the revenue that would be derived from the importation of slave-grown sugar. If these plans were pursued, ere long we might see half our Colonies lost. If it were wished to put an effectual end to the traffic in slaves, the end must be attained by showing the whole world that free labour was cheaper than slave labour; and the present measure of free trade was not likely to produce that conviction.


expressed his satisfaction at the presence of the head of the late Administration, and declared that he had never listened to a speech more calculated to lower the House in the estimation of the country than that which the right hon. Boronet had last night delivered. He had avowed that he supported the present Motion because the Government by which it was brought forward had only been a few weeks in office; however injurious rapid changes of the kind were, he exclaimed, Fiat justitia ruat cœlum, if a measure injurious to the Empire were proposed. On any question involving a principle to which he objected, he would vote against a Government, even if it produced the fatal consequence, and most fatal it would be, of restoring the right hon. Baronet to power. The real purpose of the speech of the right hon. Baronet was as clear as noon-day. That purpose was to render it difficult to form any Government. He could not support the Amendment of the noble Member for Lynn, because, upon certain terms, the noble Lord was willing to admit slave-grown sugar. The noble Lord balanced the blood of the negro against so many pounds, shillings, and pence; and provided 40s. per cwt. could be secured to the sugars of our own free Colonies, the noble Lord was not opposed to the importation of sugar from Cuba or Brazil. In his opinion, all friends of humanity and justice were bound to refuse admission to slave-grown sugar from all parts of the world; and whatever the price of sugar might be, on this account he would firmly resist the introduction of that commodity from the East Indies; for what were the Parias on the banks of the Ganges but slaves? All the main elements of slavery were connected with their existence. They were bought and sold, and every man that was bought and sold was a slave. The Parias on the banks of the Ganges, from whence so much sugar was to be expected, were in a state of slavery, as was evidenced by Claudius Buchannan, Sir W. Jones, and Judge Richardson. It was indisputable that India was steeped to the lips in slavery, and Mr. Wilberforce had said that in India slavery had her birth, her bringing up, and her dwelling place. The hon. Member proceeded to read various statements to show that slavery in America, Manilla, and Java, was much more than in Brazil and Cuba. In the latter countries, for instance, negroes were admitted to all the privileges of civilized life, and often filled high stations, and were found members of the learned professions; whereas in America they were utterly excluded from the rights of humanity, and the horrible practice prevailed of breeding human beings for slavery, and selling negro women to prostitution for purposes of propagation. At the same time it should be recollected that the planters were not the originators, nor even the encouragers of slavery, which had been forced upon them by our legislation; and it would be most unjust to leave them to struggle with all the difficulties necessarily attendant upon a sudden abolition of the system which had so long been sanctioned. At present the larger proportion of the estates in the West Indies were either wholly out of cultivation or only half cultivated; and unless provision were made for securing to the Colonies an ample supply of free labour they would soon be reduced to a state of barbarism. Even, however, an unrestricted import of free labour would be comparatively unavailing, if some time were not given to prepare for the shock of competition with slave labour. And with these views he should propose that the 9s. 3d. per cwt. differential duty be continued in favour of our Colonies for five years; at the end of which period (provided an ample supply of free labour were secured) they would be prepared for the competition contemplated.


lamented the lateness of the period at which so important a measure had been introduced. And he the more regretted it because the right hon. Baronet (Sir R. Peel), whose speech had really been in favour of the Amendment proposed by the noble Lord (Lord G. Bentinck), had ascribed to the present position of parties in the House his inability to give effect to his own opinions, and to vote in accordance with them. The vote, however, which he (the Marquess of Granby) was about to give, was wholly uninfluenced by party considerations one way or the other, and was not against the Government, but against the measure. He should vote against it on the grounds of protection to our Colonies, and of the prevention of slavery—grounds closely connected, and not easily separated; for protection had been rendered requisite to our Colonies by the Legislature of this country; and on account of measures adopted with laudable objects, but not the less injurious to our colonists—and not the less entitling them to protection. "Sir (said the noble Marquess), I should like to know what the constituencies of this country—what the nations of the world must think of our conduct, if we, who at a time when the interests of humanity and of our own Colonies appeared to be in opposition, said the 'interests of humanity must be paramount' — 'perish the Colonies — perish the interests of our consumers, if they are against the claims of humanity!'—what can be thought of us, if now, when the interests of humanity and of our colonists are identical—now when the colonists are calling on us not to admit slave-grown sugar — we are deaf to their demands? Can anything be conceived more inconsistent or more unjust? As to the argument of having sugar a halfpenny a pound cheaper, that cannot weigh with a country which expended twenty millions to eradicate the evils of slavery. Then it is said, that because we admit slave-grown cotton, coffee, &c., that therefore we must also admit slave-grown sugar. Sir, I might rely on the great difference between the species of labour alluded to, and that of sugar cultivation, as to which difference I could quote a speech of the right hon. Baronet opposite, if he would allow me to recur to a speech of his delivered so long ago as last Session. But even supposing that the distinction does not exist, what is the worth of an argument, that because we have done wrong in one case, we must continue to do wrong in all others? There is a proverb to the effect, that the first step is the most dangerous. But it was reserved for the noble Lord at the head of the Government to teach the reverse lesson, and urge that when once the first rash step has been taken, the whole flight must at once be leaped. It is surprising also to hear it argued that this measure will not add a stimulus to the Slave Trade. The noble Lord opposite (Lord Sandon) urged that if 50,000 tons of slave-grown sugar, and 50,000 of free-grown sugar, were at Hamburgh, it would not matter, as far as respected slavery, whether the free or the slave-grown sugar were admitted into our markets. I should think, Sir, that if the slave-grown sugar were taken, it would to that extent encourage the growth of slave sugar. But if we have not enough of sugar for the consumption of the country, why not resort to free foreign sugar to supply the deficiency?" There was another argument used on this question, which was, that all their endeavours to repress slavery had failed, and therefore that they should not persevere in those endeavours. If any hon. Member was influenced by that argument, let him get up and say so, and recommend the withdrawal of our fleets and men from the unwholesome and unhealthy coast of Africa. If such a proposition were made, however, after the House had heard the heartrending accounts of the Slave Trade read by his noble Friend the Member for Lynn last night, no one in that House could be induced to support it. But, at any rate, if they were to give encouragement to the Slave Trade, let them not deprive their own Colonies of such benefits as it carried with it. He felt assured, however, that by the continuance of that protection which he believed to be just, the supply of sugar demanded by the country would be obtained, and they would ensure the love and affection of their own Colonies. He should have ended there but for the observations of the hon. Member for Evesham. The hon. Gentleman had accused the party with which he had the honour of acting, of opposing the present measure in order to raise a cry in the country. He denied such an accusation. That party had been formed for the purpose of maintaining all the interests of the country—commercial as well as agricultural; and when the commercial interests were attacked, as they had been by the proposed measure, they were bound in consistency to oppose it.


wished to address a few words to the House, as he was about to give a different vote to the one he had given last year on this question. The noble Lord's Amendment appeared to be grounded on two reasons: first, the injustice and impolicy of taking from the West Indian Colonies their existing protection; and, secondly, that the proposition of the Government would give encouragement to the Slave Trade. Now, with respect to the first point, the noble Lord's Amendment did not hold out to the West India body any hope of permanent protection, and being of opinion that the greatest evil that could befall them was the continuance of uncertainty, and the making their interest a bone of contention or rallying point between two factions, he must say he thought a settlement of the measure was extremely desirable. Not only so, but looking at what had lately happened in that House, and seeing that protection to agriculture had been withdrawn by the act of the Legislature, he confessed he thought they must be prepared to abandon with it all protection whether to our domestic or colonial interests. He was told the noble Lord (Lord G. Bentinck) and his party were prepared to restore to agriculture the protection it had lost. No doubt they were sincere in their intentions; but he thought a little time would cool their ardour: should it fail to do so, he was convinced the defeat they would soon meet with would be signal. He had paid great attention to the noble Lord's statements respecting the decreased protection to our West Indian Colonies; but he could not draw the same inference from them. The noble Lord stated that the loss the Colonies had sustained by the withdrawal of protection since the abolition of slavery amounted to 750,000l.; but then it must be remembered that we had given them 20,000,000l., and that the interest of this sum must be put against that reduction. It was true that the increased expense they had been put to to obtain free labour, might be a ground for giving them further compensation; and if the West India planters could prove that by the abolition of slavery they had lost a greater sum than they had received, which he was inclined to think they could prove, he for one would readily support a measure for giving them further compensation. He was not, however, prepared to see this country give 20,000,000l. for the abolition of slavery, and also from 1,500,000l. to 2,000,000l. a year, which was the sum the noble Lord the Member for Lynn seemed to admit the present Sugar Duties cost us. With respect to the next point, the encouragement which this measure would give to the Slave Trade, he must frankly confess he did not support the measure of the late Government with respect to the Sugar Duties from any considerations with respect to the Slave Trade. He might be wrong, but he thought the arguments he had heard on the other side on this subject were the strongest. He did think that for this country to attempt to control the social state of other countries by our fiscal arrangements, was a complete mistake. When we wore slave-grown cotton, when we drank slave-grown coffee, and smoked slave-grown tobacco, he could not for the life of him conceive on what principle they might not also use slave-grown sugar. It seemed to him to be straining at a gnat and swallowing a camel. He must say too, when he knew that there were other species of slavery of a worse kind, that which never saw the sun, whose horrors were hidden from the light in the most unwholesome mines, and when he knew that by means of such slavery 49,000 tons of copper were exported last year from Cuba to Brazil, he thought this part of the noble Lord's argument fell utterly to the ground. Moreover, had the facts which the noble Lord read last night occurred ten years after slave-grown sugar had been admitted, he should have thought them entitled to much weight; but it must be remembered these horrors had taken place not after the admission of slave-labour sugar, but when we were exerting ourselves to the utmost to exclude it. The House would remember, too, that Mr. F. Buxton had left it on record as his decided opinion, that all we had done to put down the Slave Trade had not even mitigated its horrors. They must look for the amelioration of this evil to some other quarter than the Custom-house, and he should therefore negative the noble Lord's Amendment.


thought the hon. Member for Evesham was totally mistaken in what he had said of India. There was not a native in Bengal who might not, if any attempt were made to coerce him, go to one of the courts of justice, claim its protection, and be set at liberty. When he was in India, there was not in the Benares district a single slave employed in the cultivation of sugar. In fact, the only vestige of slavery remaining, was that of the predials connected with families in the southern part of India; and if any one of these wished to be free, he had only to claim the protection of the Company's courts, wherever he was. It was, therefore, wrong to say that the sugar coming from Bengal was produced by slave labour. Much had been said of the horrors of slavery; but the admission of slave-grown sugar into England would really not have the smallest effect in any way upon colonial slavery. The measure of the late Government, in that view, was one of their most objectionable steps; the whole policy of the right hon. Baronet (Sir R. Peel) with regard to the Sugar Duties, was a gross mistake, and contrary to the principles he had been so usefully carrying out. The right hon. Baronet stated again, on the previous night, that the admission of slave-grown sugar would give an additional stimulus to slavery and the Slave Trade; but he gave no reason, nor could he. Suppose that the whole supply of sugar that came or could come to Europe amounted to 320,000 tons, and that 80,000 tons more were furnished by the Continent, from beet-root; suppose one-half of all this sugar to be slave grown, and, therefore, consumed on the Continent, and not here; if now, instead of the slave-grown sugar being used here, and the free on the Continent, both consumers used both sorts indiscriminately, the price of sugar would not be affected, and no stimulus would be given to the Slave Trade by the change. The West Indies seemed to be doomed to suffer from their own friends; the case was put on grounds that would not support it. The noble Lord (Lord G. Bentinck) asked, whether we meant to allow the Slave Trade to continue, and give up our efforts to suppress it? Why, our efforts to suppress it by coercion had failed, and always must. It was on that ground he had ever been anxious to see the British fleet, amounting to at least twenty-seven ships, removed from that coast. He believed, with Sir Fowell Buxton, that all that had been done only tended to aggravate the horrors of the middle passage, and that the sooner we removed our ships from that station, the sooner we should lessen our expense, and diminish the horrors experienced by the unfortunate slaves. While he entertained these views, he did not despair of putting an end to slavery. He was satisfied that we had it in our power to abolish that system, if we only pursued the right plan. Free labour, if procured in abundance, would ever be found cheaper to the planter than slave labour. But in our West India Colonies we had not given the system a fair trial. It was because we had not enabled the planters in the West Indies to procure a sufficiency of free labour, that the experiment there had failed. It had not failed from any want of principle in the experiment itself, but purely because the Colonies had not the supply of labour which was necessary. Now his remedy was, that the West India Colonies should have the same access to labour as other producers of sugar, with this difference—let Cuba and Brazil take the natives of Africa as slaves if they chose—for, in fact, we could not prevent them—and let the West India planters take their labourers also from the shores of Africa—buy them as slaves if they so pleased—and set them free the moment they were landed in the Colonies. ["Hear, hear!"] Some hon. Members shook their heads at this; but really, when they found that all other remedies failed, why should they not adopt the only mode that was likely to secure their object? It was impossible the West Indies could compete with other sugar-growing Colonies unless they gave them abundance of free labour. In 1836 Lord Glenelg, in an able despatch on this subject, strongly recommended that preparations should be made for supplying the West India Colonies with plenty of labourers, and stated that it was the wish of Government that arrangements should be made for that purpose. But, notwithstanding this, what had been the course pursued? Had we not done everything in our power to prevent the necessary supply of labour being sent to the Colonies? The Orders in Council had, in fact, been a complete bar to the introduction of labourers, for though those Orders did not in words prevent labourers going to the Colonies, they prevented proper arrangements being made for paying the passage of the labourers, and expressly declared that no contract for services should be made on account of the Colonies, except in the Colonies themselves — thus presenting a complete bar to the introduction of free labour. Relaxations had no doubt taken place; but it was only within the last eighteen months that such relaxations had been made as could lead to any supply of labourers. No man was more anxious than he was for free trade; and in 1840 he contended for such a comprehensive measure as would include our West Indian Colonies, having regard to the peculiar circumstances in which they were placed, so as to enable them to compete with other countries. The hon. Gentleman, after expressing his belief that the suppression of the smuggling trade in tobacco would tend very much to put down slavery, repeated his belief that the only effectual mode of suppressing the Slave Trade and slavery was to open up large supplies of free labour. Let the planters have free trade in blacks, and they would take away the temptation to reduce them to slavery. The time was come when we ought to act upon some right principle in this matter, as on every other question that came under their consideration. He knew that there were men in the country, whom he honoured as valuable members of society, who would be shocked to be told that the planters should go to the coast of Africa and bring off the natives. But he would go farther. He would buy them, and then land them on the shores of our Colonies as freemen, and by so doing would be performing a kind and generous act. The right hon. Baronet (Sir J. Graham) seemed to have startled into life at this statement; and he should like to hear from him some explanation as to what other course was likely to be successful. Let them take the 500,000l. which was something like the expense incurred at present in putting down the Slave Trade by means of our navy—let them withdraw their fleet and expend only half of that sum in getting labour for the Colonies—take the whole sum if they choose for one year, to make the experiment, and what would be the result? Why, slavery would cease. He had seen a gentleman lately from Cuba, himself a proprietor, and he assured him that the proprietors there did not wish to have one slave more admitted; but that the slaves were now taken there, and solely through the cupidity of the governors. The same gentleman had assured him that the Governors of Cuba had been making large fortunes by means of the introduction of slaves. They had all heard an account of 150 slaves being bayonetted in a disturbance in that island; but he believed that two ships laden with negroes came into port there the next month, and lay nearly five weeks before they discharged their cargoes. In his opinion the Chancellor of the Exchequer would lose revenue by the measure without benefiting the consumer; and when revenue was lost without benefit accruing to the consumer, it was so much money utterly thrown away. In this manner it was, he held, that much of the late abolition of duties had been lost and thrown away. In his opinion the same argument did not hold with respect to corn and sugar. For corn we had the whole world as a market to buy in; but, with respect to sugar, the case was different. Sugar required time to create an additional supply, and many arrangements not needed in the case of corn. The planters, therefore, ought to have had more time given them, not for the sake of themselves but of the revenue. If the measure could be amended in this respect in its progress through the Committee, he did think, on public grounds, that it ought to be amended. Many persons might suppose that he was averse to give relief to the consumers of sugar; quite the reverse was the fact; he was desirous to see the duty on sugar reduced to half, for he believed that duty would give as great a revenue as they could raise by any means, and would confer a great benefit on the country. He wished to act in this matter upon principle; he thought their legislation was deviating too much from principle; and that the country had been the dupe of maladministration on the part of Governments and Colonial Secretaries; but they ought now to retrace their steps; and if all their efforts had hitherto failed to put down this abominable traffic, let them try that which he had proposed, namely, to take away the temptation to it. The Government ought to be prepared to carry out those regulations in the Excise which would enable them to admit the produce of the Colonies to be used in all the ways of which they were capable. Let a Committee be appointed to-morrow, and let them investigate that part of the question, and they would demonstrate that all the fears of the Government on this subject were fallacious, and that the boon might be conceded without any difficulty.


thought the hon. Gentleman had made the best speech on his (Sir J. R. Reid's) side of the question that he had heard in the course of this discussion. He rose to declare that the colonists, under existing circumstances, and in the event of the Government proposition being carried into effect, would be totally and completely ruined. He had no hesitation in declaring this when he had to state to the House, without reserve, that that very day, in consequence of the turn the debate had taken last night, and the probability of this measure being carried, as he had no doubt it would be, a decision had been come to by some of the most respectable parties connected with the Colonies, and the fiat had gone forth for preventing the supplies being sent out for cultivating their estates there. He said that on his own knowledge. Every practical man connected with the Colonies would bear him out in saying, that to compete with slave labour, placed as the Colonies now were, was altogether and totally impossible. If any one asserted that it was practicable, he for one denied it. He did implore the House and the noble Lord calmly to consider the great interests now at stake. The West Indians wanted to throw no obstacles in the way of free trade; all they wanted was fair play. With fair play he had no more doubt than he had of his own existence they would produce plenty of sugar, and at a very low price. A circumstance had occurred that day which was worthy of mention. A friend of his had had a coffee estate in Jamaica that formerly yielded him 6,000l. a year after deduction of all charges; he had also a considerable sugar estate; and he now was completely ruined, and had come to him that very day telling him of his unfortunate position. He was deeply overcome by his friend's narration, and had afforded him pecuniary relief for himself and his eight children. He did not mention this anecdote in order to work on the feelings of the House, or excite their commiseration for the class to which he belonged; all he asked was, give them fair play, and then they would fear no competition whatever.


was anxious to detail the true state of the circumstances and situation in which the plan of the Government would place the Colonies, and point out certain salient points in it which were deserving of the serious consideration of the House. In what he was about to say he should commit nobody but himself, as he was no longer a member of the committee of West India proprietors. With respect to the term of years to be given the West Indians, he cared not for it; he wanted to see the question settled once for all. Whatever might arise, let them have the solid substantial prospect of a settlement. It must be remembered that the great pressure had fallen upon the West Indians since the abolition, and under present circumstances he thought the West Indians must prepare themselves for coming events by increased assiduity and skill, and by the adoption he might almost say, of European modes of cultivation. He saw no other of meeting their difficulties. For himself, he never had voted on this question for some years, being interested in it; and therefore he should be the last man who would oppose a Government plan of this nature when it removed protection from the class he belonged to. The case of the West Indian and English landed proprietors he considered as standing on a totally different basis. With respect to the importation of free labourers into our West India Colonies, there was, as the House was probably aware, considerable diversity of opinion. Some people thought that there was no need for such an importation; but the number who thought so was, he believed, very small. The general opinion was, that a large importation of free labourers was wanted. If it was asked, where were they to come from, he would say the coast of Africa. The African negro was much better fitted for the purpose than the Indian Coolie. The Indian Coolie, from his accustomed diet and habits, was not likely to prove so useful a labourer in point of bodily strength and activity as the African, nor was he so likely to amalgamate with the West Indians. The proposed period of contract, however—twelve months—was too short; and he hoped the noble Lord at the head of the Government would think well before he tied down the West Indian proprietor to that period. Then with respect to the fiscal regulations, he hoped his right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer would not be daunted by the difficulties that surrounded him, that he would not be misled by anything which was said out of doors, or by the misrepresentations of interested parties, but would proceed to carry out the principles of free trade to their full extent. Was it fair that the West India interest, after having free trade imposed upon them, as against themselves, should not be allowed the advantage of it as regarded the articles which they imported for consumption in this country? As the House was aware, a duty of 1s. 6d. per gallon was now levied on West India rum, as against English spirits; and it was proposed to diminish this duty one-third. Did the House imagine that this small reduction would satisfy the West India interest? He assured them it would not, and that it was useless to attempt to maintain a different duty upon West India spirits from that which was imposed on English spirits. They might keep it up for twelve months; but, after passing the present measure, he defied any set of gentlemen, he cared not who they were, especially if they were exponents and apostles of the principles of free trade, to keep it up much longer. With regard to the admission of sugar in a crystallized shape, and in an unrefined state, as molasses, into the breweries and distilleries of this country, he was aware that there were various difficulties in the way; but the noble Lord must throw these difficulties overboard, and be prepared to carry through the principles of free trade, not by halves, but by wholes. He regretted to hear the hon. Member for Dover state that certain gentlemen connected with the West Indies had determined to abandon the cultivation of their estates. That was not the course which he (Mr. Bernal) intended to pursue. He was resolved rather to look to increased energy to enable him to meet the competition by which he would be surrounded; and he would say to others who were similarly situated as himself—"Do not despair; do not waste your energies in vain regrets. The temper of the times, and the tone of men's feelings, run so much in the direction of free trade, that you can no more help acceding to the demand for sugar at a supposed cheap price, he would say, than the gentlemen connected with the agricultural interest could resist the cry of free trade. And when he spoke of cheap sugar, he would say, that he did not think that sugar would for any length of time be so cheap as he should wish it to be. When the products of any particular country came suddenly and unexpectedly into demand, the furnishers of these products expected and obtained an increased price for them. And so, if the sugars of Brazil and Cuba came into extensive demand, there would consequently be such an increase of the price as would prevent the enthusiastic dreams of great cheapness from being realized. He repeated, that such were his opinions in reference to this measure; and therefore he should vote, and had always intended to vote, for the measure proposed by the noble Lord. He had never had but one opinion about it; but he hoped he should not be accused of inconsistency, if at the same time he should be found stickling as much as he could for the admission of colonial spirits into this country on the same footing as Scotch, Irish, or English, spirits; and also pressing for the admission, under due and proper restrictions, of colonial sugar and molasses into the breweries and distilleries of this country. He trusted, also, that the noble Lord would reconsider the question as to the period of contracts to be entered into with the negroes on the coast of Africa. There might be complaints in Jamaica relative to the repayment of money for immigration; and though he did not agree with the hon. Member for Montrose, he did think that some part of the money spent in keeping cruisers on the coast of Africa, might form an emigration fund under the management of sober and well-trained agents. And he concluded with the hope that from this year the West Indians, not recurring to past hardships, would exert themselves, and be enabled, though it would not be without great difficulties, to commence a new era.


would have been content to rest his vote on the statement of his noble Friend who introduced this Motion, and on the speech of his right hon. Friend (the Chancellor of the Exchequer) in defence of the Bill; but there were some points which pressed themselves on his mind, and on which he wished to make a few observations. He never could forget that he was one of those who voted for the emancipation of the slaves in our Colonies; that measure had had a greater effect on private fortunes than any legislative measure in the history of this country—a great responsibility lay on the promoters of it. And if there was one thing more than another that the Legislature ought to guard against, looking to the interests of humanity in their widest range, to the fate of the negro race throughout the world, to the force of the example of this country, to its moral influence, as well as to its material interests, it was this—that that great experiment should not be a failure. What had recently occurred in that House with respect to free trade? They had heard Minister after Minister declare that treaties and tariffs had failed, and would fail, and that we must show other nations by our example that free trade can be successfully carried on. Now, what was true of free trade was true also of free labour; and if we wished that other nations should follow our example, we must show the success of our own free-labour experiment. And this brought him to the consideration of two points—the conduct pursued by this country on the west coast of Africa, and the conduct pursued towards our West Indian Colonies. The right hon. Baronet the Member for Tamworth, last night, declared that the best armament against the Slave Trade was the successful cultivation of sugar by free labour. That was no new opinion; but he rejoiced that the right hon. Baronet had given to that opinion the sanction of his high authority. Sir Fowell Buxton, in 1839, speaking of the failure of our measures on the coast of Africa, declared— That the number of slavers had increased from 70 to 150, and that for every cargo formerly carried over the sea, two cargoes, or twice the number in one cargo, wedged together in a mass of living corruption, are now borne on the waves of the Atlantic. His noble Friend, Lord J. Russell, in 1839, in an official letter to the Lords of the Treasury, said— Under such circumstances, to repress the foreign Slave Trade by a marine guard would scarcely be possible, if the whole British navy could be employed for the purpose. It is an evil which can never be adequately encountered by any system of mere prohibition and penalty. Earl Grey, then Lord Howick, on the 24th of June, 1845, on Mr. Hutt's Motion, expressed his opinion to be entirely in accordance with Mr. Hutt's, "that the Mixed Commission was a farce;" and the right hon. Gentleman the Chancellor of the Exchequer (Mr. C. Wood), in 1841, on the debate on the Sugar Duties, said, that "the new efforts to put down the Slave Trade had only aggravated its horrors;" and inquired, "Might not some other means be tried — a Treaty with Brazil, &c. ?" Since that time the force on the coast of Africa had been much increased; steamers had been added, and yet the Slave Trade flourished more abundantly. Her Majesty's Commissioners wrote to Lord Aberdeen, from Sierra Leone, on December 31, 1844— The activity of the increased squadron, and especially the addition of effective steam vessels, has, without doubt, had a considerable effect on the number of captures; still, however, we believe that the Slave Trade is increasing, and that it is conducted, perhaps, more systematically than it has ever been hitherto. And Her Majesty's Commissioners wrote to Lord Aberdeen, from Rio de Janeiro, on March 21, 1845, and said that— The importation of African slaves has not diminished; the capital employed in these illicit transactions augments;" and that "the risk is so subdivided amongst several vessels, held in shares, that the capture of four vessels would not subject them to loss provided the fifth was successful in landing slaves. That was the latest report which had been received; and it showed that whilst on the coast of Africa the Commissioners reported that the Slave Trade was increasing, the Commissioners at Rio Janeiro said that the importation was not diminishing. Let him, then, invite the attention of the House to the expense which these expeditions on the coast of Africa caused year by year. By a Parliamentary return of June 20, 1843, it appeared that— The ships of all classes employed for the suppression of the Slave Trade and estimate of charge for the public, for 1842, were, ships, 58; guns, 945; men, 8,554.

Total expense £575,466
Add for liberated Africans for the last six years, average 25,000
Mixed Commission Courts, about 10,000
This estimate, large as it was, he had been assured was far below the reality; but he stated it, as it appeared on the face of public returns. The failure of our endeavours up to this time was fully borne out by an intelligent officer who had recently returned from the coast of Africa, who told him that the effort, great as it was, to put down the Slave Trade, was entirely ineffectual; and that, do what they would, they could not keep up a blockade along a coast of more than 4,000 miles in length. That officer had illustrated the difficulties of a blockade by an occurrence which happened to himself: the mists from the heat, after the rains, were very great, and, in one case, two ships had run into the mouth of a river on the speculation of catching a slaver, and though they had been close together, on meeting afterwards it appeared that neither knew the other had been there. The House had heard a great deal about steamers, but there were many drawbacks to their use; their smoke could be seen for twenty-seven or twenty-eight miles, which gave warning to the vigilant slavers. Then, the steamers were more unfavourable to the health of the crews from their lying near the shore, and the work and exposure in taking in coals and wood. His informant, fresh from the scene of action, confirmed the public reports—"that the Slave Trade is increasing." When he left the coast of Africa, in the month of December, the barracoons were more frequent on the coast. Let him next refer to an expense of a more serious character—in the loss of health and life. The House would recollect the case of the Eclair:The Eclair sailed from Devonport, in November, 1844, having a crew of 146 officers and men, for the coast of Africa, on which station she remained to the 23rd of July last, 1845, up to which period she had lost nine men from the common coast fever. The total loss by deaths on the voyage home and in harbour was sixty-eight. The Styx left England, on June 1, 1845, with one captain, two lieutenants, a surgeon, a purser, and a master; in all, six officers. The lieutenant was dead, the surgeon was dead, the purser was dead, the master was dead, the second lieutenant was invalided, very ill; and the captain was invalided, having been very ill, and, at one time, quite lost his eyesight. So that not one single officer remained well. He believed, then, that the attempts to put down the Slave Trade up to this time had been ineffectual; and if our efforts had not been successful, there was no one who would doubt that our attempts had materially aggravated the horrors of the Slave Trade. Turning from the coast of Africa to our possessions in the West Indies, what course had been pursued there? The Select Committee of the House of Commons on the West India Colonies, which sat in July, 1842, resolved— That the principal causes of diminished production and consequent distress are—the great difficulty which has been experienced by the planters in obtaining steady and continuous labour, and the high rate of remuneration which they give for the broken and indifferent work which they are able to procure; and, that one obvious and most desirable mode of endeavouring to compensate for this diminished supply of labour is to promote the immigration of a fresh labouring population to such an extent as to create competition for employment. At the same time another Committee sat on the state of the West Coast of Africa. The Committee on West Africa in August, 1842, considered three points:—
  1. "1. Whether there was any considerable materials for a free emigration from Africa to the West Indies?
  2. "2. Whether it would be desirable for the African to make the change?
  3. "3. Whether it could be carried on without reasonable apprehension, or indeed a possibility of creating or encouraging a new Slave Trade?"
And they reported with respect to these—
  1. "1. The materials for emigration are enumerated, 134 and if it were permitted, encouraged, and successful, they would probably prove to be considerable.
  2. "2. It would be for the negro the highest advantage—the greatest blessing.
  3. "3. Under proper regulations, the Committee think that no danger exists of creating a real or plausible suspicion of a revival of the Slave Trade.
Your Committee cannot but strongly urge upon Parliament not only not to prohibit the emigration of free blacks from our African settlements to our West India Colonies, but to encourage and promote it by the authority of Government. He would say also that the French West India Islands were looking to the result of our experiments with the most extreme and lively interest. The condition of those islands in which there was slavery and no Slave Trade was most lamentable; and if we could only show by our example that free labour was successful in our Colonies, it would be but a few years before the French West Indies would follow our course. No estate in any French island was now saleable, except at the most ruinous price. Lately, an estate in Santa Cruz was sold, producing 150 hogsheads of sugar, with 300 slaves upon it, at a price of 4,000l. About the same time, an estate in Barbadoes was sold, producing the same quantity, 150 hogsheads, without, of course, any slaves, and the price was 21,000l. This showed, even with all our difficulties, how much better the condition of Barbadoes was, than that of Santa Cruz. But Barbadoes was an island in which the population and the territory were more evenly balanced than in our other islands; and was an instance of what others might become with an increased supply of labourers. The West Indians had themselves pointed out in innumerable documents and representations their great want and great difficulty. Mr. Cave wrote to Lord Stanley on November 5, 1843, and said— The momentous question, whether the staple products of tropical countries can be raised as effectually by the labour of freemen as by that of slaves, can never be brought to a fair trial, until the freedom of the employer be as fully established as the freedom of the labourer; and emancipation cannot be pronounced successful until that question be satisfactorily solved. Without an immediate and extensive supply of labour, their agriculture and trade must still further decline. The Acting Committee of West India Planters, in a memorial to the Government, presented July 15, 1846, declared that— A policy directly the reverse of this course was unhappily adopted. Although it was quite certain that a great proportion of the agricultural labourers would, on being liberated from their obligations of service, occupy themselves with other pursuits, the proprietors were by a strange exercise of power, which they have always regarded as unjustifiable, prohibited from employing any other servants than those who chose to remain on their estates. The restrictions upon immigration, after being obstinately maintained for many years, to the grievous loss of the proprietors, have at length, though very recently, been relaxed. But they are still prohibited from attempting to hire, even within the British dominions, the labourers most suitable to their service. To render their cultivation again profitable, and to induce its extension, they only require the enjoyment of freedom in procuring labour. Here then was the contrast—a blind and lavish expenditure on the coast of Africa—parsimony and restriction towards our West India Colonies—the prodigal expense accomplishing no good, probably aggravating the evil—the injurious restriction, forbidding the improvement and threatening almost the existence of the Colonies. He thought the demands of the West Indians reasonable and fair; he thought that that interest, now almost prostrate, had a right to require every possible assistance in obtaining free labour. He was not indisposed, even this year, to say that he was ready to vote a certain sum, say 50,000l., for the purpose of assisting the immigration of free labourers into the West Indies; and that sum he should propose to deduct from the expenses which we incurred in the prevention of the Slave Trade on the coast of Africa. This seemed to him a matter of very great importance and of urgent necessity. It would depend on the feelings of the House whether this proposal would meet with their favour. In his opinion it was a subject which well deserved the serious attention of Her Majesty's Government. The Chancellor of the Exchequer apprehended a deficiency at no distant period—he could not help suggesting that means of providing for that deficiency might be found in the direction which he had indicated. Without further detaining the House, he would venture to urge the responsible advisers of the Crown to give a favourable consideration to the entreaties which came from the West India interest, and to give to the admission of free labour the utmost assistance in their power.


said, he had not the good fortune to hear the speech of the noble Lord, developing his plan for the settlement of this important question; but, after an attentive perusal of it, he came to the conclusion, first, that the public, and more especially those whose interests were immediately affected by the proposed change, were under great obligations to the noble Lord for the attempt he was making to put the Sugar Duties upon a permanent footing, in place of those annual discussions which led to so much doubt and uncertainty, and were so injurious to the interests of the colonists. But, secondly, he must say that he could not think the plan of the noble Lord was the best that could have been devised for carrying out free-trade principles. It seemed to him monstrous to continue a tax upon West Indian sugar of 14s. the cwt., which was equal to 1½d. per pound, and to tax other sugar 21s. the cwt., or close upon 2d. per pound, and at the same time talk of cheap sugar. It was certainly most desirable that we should afford to the constantly increasing population of this country cheap sugar, and an abundant supply of it; but this object could not be fully and properly attained so long as these heavy duties were continued; and if our Colonies were to be considered an integral part of the mother country, as the right hon. Baronet said on one occasion they ought to be, let him ask, why should they tax sugar coming to London from his farm in Jamaica, any more than they would tax corn coming from his farm in Cumberland? There was less reason for so doing, because sugar was liable to heavy costs of freight, insurance, wharfage, and other heavy expenses in the Colony before shipment; whereas the cost of the transmission of corn would be very small. If they meant to admit slave produce, and they wanted revenue, he should say, take your tax on slave produce, but enable your own colonists to have a chance of disposing of their produce at a profit, which they cannot now do, by admitting that produce duty free; or, if you will not do that, take a small duty, say 4s. on colonial sugar, and 14s. on slave sugar; you would thus enable the great mass of our population, to whom this article has now become one of prime necessity, and to whom, from its present high price, it is unattainable, to enjoy it in abundance at a cheap rate, and you would, by this means, obtain a larger revenue than under the proposed plan, by the immensely increased consumption of the article which would take place. They were not acting up to their own principles if they allowed corn to come into this country duty free, and did not apply the same principle to sugar. He should say nothing at present about the wickedness and immorality of giving direct encouragement to the Slave Trade and slavery, which it had cost us some 35,000,000l. or 40,000,000l. to put down, as it appeared now to be admitted on all hands that the Emancipation Act had turned out a complete failure. In fact, its principal effect had been to ruin our own colonists, to enhance the price of sugar to our own people, to render a formerly active and industrious population a lazy and indolent one, and to transfer the labour formerly performed by them to other labourers in the slave countries. He always said it would be so. Since the passing of the Emancipation Act, no attempt had been made by the successive Governments fairly to carry out that measure; on the contrary, every impediment (with one slight exception, whilst the noble Lord was in office) had been thrown in the way of the immigration of free labourers; and thus, in place of free labour becoming cheaper than slave labour, as we were assured by the author of the Emancipation Act would be the case, it was about double the price, and hardly possible, in some of our islands, to obtain steady and continuous labour (indispensable to the profitable cultivation of a sugar farm) at any price. It seemed that restrictions as to those parts of Africa where the best labourers were to be found were still to be continued, under the imaginary pretence that to obtain them there would be an indirect re-enactment of the Slave Trade, although nothing could be more easy than to make such regulations as would prevent such an occurrence. He thought that if the Legislature should determine to admit slave sugar into consumption in this country, the least the Government could do would be to give fair play to our own colonists by affording every facility to the introduction into our Colonies of free labourers, from whatever part of the world they might choose to obtain them. Upon the whole, he rejoiced that the question before the House was likely soon to be permanently settled, for anything was better than uncertainty.


spoke as follows:—As one deeply interested in the adjustment of the Sugar Duties, I am anxious to explain the vote I am going to give tonight. Having felt it my duty to support the commercial policy of the late Government, my speech would require rather an awkward preface were I about to advocate the application of any other principle to sugar, than that which I have voted for applying to corn, to timber, and to silk, according to the several circumstances affecting each trade. I rise, however, for no such purpose. I am for free trade in sugar, as I was for free trade in corn. The only question to which I think the House ought to address itself is, how to pass from the present system of differential duties on foreign sugar, to one of perfect equality, consistently with justice, with humanity, and with self-interest. Justice, namely, to the West India colonists—humanity to the African race—the interests of the people of this country. I believe these three important principles will be best promoted concurrently. I shall endeavour to show that they can be alone combined by putting your West India Colonies into a position to compete with foreign sugar-growing countries before you deprive them of all protection. It does not need much argument to show that justice requires this. The simple fact, that the inability of the West India planter to compete with the foreigner, is the result of the legislation of this country—is enough to prove that it would be most unjust to expose him to that competition without doing all that in you lies to restore his former powers of production. Now, can you restore them? To discover the remedy, we must as usual trace the disease. You possess in the western hemisphere the finest sugar-growing countries on the earth—regions destined hereafter, whether as dependencies of the British Crown, or as independent States, to furnish the cheapest supplies of sugar to the markets of the world. A few years since these Colonies were flourishing—they produced more sugar than you consumed—they exported the surplus to foreign markets: thus defying competition, and rendering your protective system nominal as for as the article of sugar. They now languish—their proprietors are half-ruined—their production has fallen off one-third—they fear to encounter their foreign rivals with any degree of protection you can afford. What change has taken place in their position? Of what element of prosperity has your legislation directly deprived them? Not of capital, not of skill, not of a resident proprietary body (as some pretend), but of that without which all of these requisites are utterly useless—of labour. I will not detain the House by tracing the effects of your tampering with the supply of labour in the West Indies— from your Orders in Council of 1823, to that violation which you committed upon your own terms in proposing abolition, by first reducing the apprenticeship from twelve to seven years, while the measure was before the House; and again, by the abrogation of the last two years of that most important probationary period — whereby the colonists were hurried into a social revolution without the slightest opportunity of legislative preparation. I am not complaining of this interference—I question neither its propriety nor its sincerity. I believe it to be the best reparation this country could make for having shared so deeply in the profits and the guilt of the Slave Trade. Ruinous as the consequences of your measures have been to me individually, I would not have them undone for any earthly consideration. I hold the people of this country responsible, not for having abolished slavery, but for having abolished it badly, unadvisedly, by impulse, not according to reason. Eight years have now elapsed since coercive labour in our Colonies was thus rashly but happily abolished. Time has proved that the apprehensions then expressed by West India proprietors were well founded. Emancipation has succeeded morally; it has failed economically. Nothing can be more satisfactory than its results as regards the condition of the negroes; but as regards the owners of property its effects have been most disastrous. And what has been the course of the Government of this country under such a state of things—that Government reflecting, of course, the opinion of Parliament and of the country? Did it pass laws calculated to foster industry, and to repress squatting and vagrancy? I fear the less inquiry on this subject the better. Did it hasten to give every encouragement to the introduction of free labourers, to supply the place of those who it was certain would retire from field labour? No! In the teeth of this suggestion of common sense, it conferred a monopoly of the labour market on the few who chose to remain. Simultaneously with the termination of the apprenticeship, a law was passed prohibiting in effect the introduction of a single labourer into the Colonies. I was surprised to hear the noble Lord the other night still attempting to palliate the passing of that Order in Council. Does he not know that under its most impolitic provisions the planters of the Crown Colonies were for upwards of three years prohibited from entering into engagements with their fellow subjects in this country? If they wished to send out an English ploughman to teach the negroes the use of the plough—if they desired to engage a sugar-boiler out of one of our refineries to improve the art of making sugar—this iniquitous law deprived them of the power of doing so. Nay, the House will scarcely credit me when I state, that if at the present hour I entered into such a contract with a German sugar-baker at Hamburgh or Bremen, it would be so much waste paper. It is true that within the last few weeks permission has been transmitted to the colonial Legislature to legalize such engagements; it is true, likewise, that the absolute prohibition imposed upon the communication between the British West Indies and the British possessions in Africa and India—the two great sources from which a copious supply of labour could alone be expected—has been of late years relaxed. Nay, more: the noble Lord opposite, who first had the honour of originating that system of free immigration from Africa which may yet not impossibly supersede the forced immigration of its unhappy children, promised the other night to grant a further relaxation by allowing short contracts. But it still remains the fact, at the moment at which I speak, that immigration is fettered by many restrictions; that the vast African continent is virtually closed to our languishing Colonies; and that the more costly immigration from India, to which they have been driven as a substitute, is only this very year commencing. I do protest, therefore, against the injustice of forcing the West India planter, thus un-provided with labour, into a competition with slave countries where human life is a drug. Sir, the restrictions with regard to labour are not the only restrictions the removal of which the West Indians are entitled in justice to demand, before you bring them into further competition with other countries. Is free trade to be free only as far as the interests of the mother country are concerned? With what consistency can you talk of free trade in sugar, and maintain the monopolies which at present affect the other products of the sugarcane, rum and molasses, in your home markets? This subject has been so ably gone into by my hon. Friend the Member for Weymouth (Mr. Bernal), that I shall not detain the House with any repetition, especially as I shall have an opportunity of entering more fully into it when it comes directly under our consideration. Meantime, I feel certain that these restrictions are indefensible, and I have all the more confidence that they will be speedily abolished, because the interests of the consumer in this country are equally concerned with those of the planters in their abolition. As I have alluded to the consumer, I will proceed at once to show how his interests are nearly as much identified with the maintenance of sugar production in our Colonies, as those of the British producer. If in so doing I postpone considerations of humanity to considerations of trade, I fear I am only following the course which the people of this country are disposed to take. Let me not be disposed to underrate the importance of cheap sugar to our working classes. I admit that it is the duty of Government to procure it for them by every legitimate means; but I do think the Chancellor of the Exchequer is deceiving both himself and the country in assuming that the reduction of 5s. per cwt., which he expects to secure by his measure, will extend the power of consuming sugar to fresh masses of the people. I do not think that a fall of ½d. per lb. will have any such effect. It is because I feel strongly the importance of cheap sugar that I wish it not to be quite forgotten that the maintenance of cultivation in the West Indies is, after all, a national object. It is all very well for your men of abstract principles to say that the differential duties on sugar ought to be abolished at once; but, apart from the considerations of revenue, those who look to practical results do not value free trade as an end, but as a means—they advocate free trade in sugar because they wish to procure cheap sugar for the people of this country. The question then is, would the immediate equalization of the Sugar Duties secure a permanent supply of cheap sugar?—or would it not, by creating a falling off in the supply from our Colonies, occasion, after the first few months, a gradual rise of price for several succeeding years, until, in short, the investment of capital in slave countries and the extension of the Slave Trade made up the deficit? It must be borne in mind that, independently of any legislative interference, the present season is one of severe trial to the West India planter, in consequence of the long-continued dry weather; further advances of capital from this country will in most cases be required, and, unless a fair prospect of ultimate reimbursement be held out, many estates will be abandoned. Any very discouraging measure will, therefore, easily check production, and prevent any effort to bring up the crops, which will this year be at least 30,000 tons short of last; nay, more, it will check the disposition on the part of the colonists to raise funds for the purpose of procuring labourers, in expectation of which their existing cultivation had been extended. An enormous defalcation of sugar must ensue. We are acting in face of bitter experience on this score. At emancipation the production of the West Indies was thought of little consequence. The duty on East India sugar had recently been equalized, and it was expected that any deficiency would be made up from that quarter. What was the result? The West Indies fell off in their production 90,000 tons: the importation from the East Indies rose 20,000 tons. The price of sugar rose in the home market from 29s. 5d. in 1834, to 49s. 1d. in 1840; and even the price of slave sugar rose all over the world 6s. to 7s. per cwt. No one looks now to any very rapid extension of shipments from the East Indies, especially if the price in the home market be moderate or even stationary. Under every discouragement and disadvantage for want of labour, the West Indies have increased their exports since this question was discussed in 1841, nearly 40,000 tons; while those from India, comparing the same periods of 1841 and 1845, have only increased 3,500 tons. To what other free-labour country can you look to supply the deficiency? In Java—if you deem the labour there free—the cultivation is based altogether upon an artificial system of commercial monopoly. That we cannot rely upon that source for a material increase of supply is evident from the fact, that our markets have for the last two years been open to Java sugar, and that the quantity entered for consumption is insignificant. It is then upon the slave countries, Cuba and Brazil, that you must become dependent, if you diminish presently or prospectively the production of your own Colonies. I will not enter into any question as to the consistency of such a dependence—with that policy for which the people of this country have made so many sacrifices; but I ask, is that dependence expedient, even in the interests of the consumer? Is not slavery at best a very insecure source of supply? The British Colonies are as yet the only countries in which the negro race have been set free—they alone have been subjected to the ordeal of emancipation. The ill success, indeed, of that experiment, has been sufficient hitherto to deter France, Denmark, and other nations, who at its commencement were on the eve of following our example. But public opinion in these European countries will not be long quiescent; and on the other side of the Atlantic the glad sound of liberty has echoed from the hanks of the Mississippi to those of the Amazon. Slavery, as an institution, is doomed to perish; and it will perish with more or less injury to property and cultivation in proportion as each slaveholding nation has elevated her bondmen in the scale of civilization by previous training. Before, therefore, you needlessly give a deathblow to the production of your own Colonies, would it not be well to consider what the effect on the price of sugar would be if Cuba became a second St. Domingo? Do I exaggerate the chance of such an occurrence? Last year a servile war was only suppressed in that island by the slaughter of 3,000 slaves; and I think the immigration to which the Chancellor of the Exchequer last night alluded, of 3,000 white labourers, was prompted rather by a wish to take precautions against the recurrence of such an event, than by a preference for free labour. If, by your policy, you so stimulate the avidity of the sugar growers of Cuba and Brazil for present gain, beyond their apprehensions of future consequences, depend upon it the result is only a question of time. I have pointed to this disadvantage of a dependence upon slave labour merely as a question of commercial prudence. It is impossible, however, altogether to disregard its bearings in connexion with humanity. I do not intend to raise the humanity cry; I may have feelings on the subject; but I am a West India proprietor, and therefore keep them to myself, knowing how little credit I should get for their sincerity. I have, however, no wish whatever to avail myself of the co-operation of the anti-slavery party; on the contrary, I believe that to their mistaken and shortsighted opposition to free immigration into the West India Colonies, the present crisis is mainly to be attributed. I have every respect for those who conscientiously entertain these extreme views; but I cannot pretend to share them. I admit at once that it is impracticable to abstain from the use of slave produce—that it is visionary to dream of supplying ourselves with any other than slave-grown cotton and tobacco; but I do not see that I preclude myself by this admission from endeavouring to abolish the distinctive duties between free and slave-grown sugar in such a manner as to guard against the extension of the Slave Trade and the perpetuation of slavery. I should fail in doing my duty if I did not proclaim the deep responsibility which rests upon the authors of any measure which shall have the effect of discouraging the production of sugar by free labour. Will the measure described to the House the other night by the noble Lord have this effect? From the bottom of my heart I do fear that if passed in its present shape it will. Before I proceed to analyse its provisions, let me first declare how entirely I concur in the eloquent anticipations with which the noble Lord concluded his speech as to the new era to which the establishment of perfect free trade between Great Britain and her Colonies must give rise. I share in none of the apprehensions which some have expressed as to the results of the abolition of the old colonial system. I believe the only true colonial principle to be that enunciated by the right hon. Baronet the Member for Tamworth—to treat your Colonies as integral portions of your Empire. I shall rejoice when the day arrives in which the colonists stand in a position to dispense with all protection, because I feel sure that it will then be inevitable to do them justice. I cannot help thinking, however, that the noble Lord's peroration was singularly inappropriate to the measures he had been developing in his speech. A more one-sided scheme, a more mother-country attempt to apply free-trade principles, I cannot conceive. The colonists are to be exposed to free competition with all the world; but they are not to have the benefit of procuring free labour where they choose, lest it should interfere with the Anti-Slave-Trade policy with which the mother country has embarrassed herself. They are to have free trade in sugar; but if they claim free trade in rum and molasses, musty reports of Committees of this House thirty years old are all the answer deigned to their petitions. The Chancellor of the Exchequer did use one argument, indeed, last night, besides those connected with revenue (which are no arguments at all where justice to the Colonies is concerned). He said that the claim of the colonists to perfect freedom did not commence till they themselves were exposed to free competition. The argument was unworthy of the right hon. Gentleman. Now, it is evident that an interval of at least two or three years must necessarily elapse between the permission to get free labour and the time at which the effects of that free labour can be presented at your Custom-house in the shape of sugar—between the investment of capital in the erection of distilleries in the West Indies, and the importation of an additional quantity of rum into this country. This argument brings me, however, to a consideration of the duration and amount of the scale of duties on sugar as proposed by the Government. There is to be for five years to come a constantly changing differential duty imposed on foreign sugar, ostensibly for the protection of the colonists. But, after the first two years, during which protection is least of all wanted by the West Indian—both on account of the shortness of his production, and the impossibility of diverting more than a certain limited quantity of foreign sugar from the European market—the protection rapidly diminishes, becoming, in fact, less than a halfpenny per lb. in the third year, which is that in which a valid support would be most required. By that time the foreigner will be prepared to pour in an additional supply of slave sugar into our ports, and the production of our own Colonies must, if ever, have been restored. The scale proposed by the Government, therefore, yields no such efficient protection as will encourage the colonist to persevere. Sir, I wish to confine my remarks within the limits of fair criticism; but I must in my conscience say, that no contrast can be more complete than that between the comprehensive simplicity of the commercial reforms of the late Government, and the complicated provisions of the scheme now before us. I acquit the noble Lord and the Chancellor of the Exchequer of much blame in the matter. They were hurried on to settle a great question in a few days' time—they were pressed from behind by those who knew little of the difficulties of the subject. I believe that they would have produced a much better measure if they had felt quite sure of carrying it. Now, however, that it is quite clear that a settlement of the Sugar Duties will be effected, I do think that they will be amenable to the reproaches of men of all political opinions, if they refuse so to remodel their scale in Committee as to make it more acceptable to all parties —better calculated to promote the permanent interests both of the consumer and the producer. It would be easy to effect, this by shortening the period of five years allowed for the abolition of protection, and condensing the amount of protection into three or four years. Although the West India body decline respectfully but firmly to be any way accessary to improving a measure which they, by that very step, prove they sincerely believe to be destructive to their interests, I feel confident that they would prefer three years of really efficient protection to the five years of attenuated duties offered. I confess I am not without hopes that when we go into Committee, some alteration of this kind may be proposed by the Government, especially as my right hon. Friend last night confined himself entirely to explaining the grounds of the differential duty of 7s. per cwt. imposed during the first year, and did not proceed in any way to justify the rest of the scale. It only remains for me to state the course I am about to pursue on the Amendment of the noble Lord the Member for Lynn. However I may acquiesce in the letter of that Amendment, I think it must be clear to the House that I differ widely from the spirit in which it is moved. My objections to the measure do not arise either from protective or anti-slavery feelings. The question with me is not one of principle but of degree. It would be a question with me, therefore, whether I could conscientiously support such an Amendment, were I even purely a colonial Member—did I sit here to advocate West India interests only; but, as a representative of the British people in the House of Commons, I cannot put out of consideration the consequences which the success of such a Resolution would have upon the social interests of this country. I cannot shut my eyes to the state of parties—to the probability of a dissolution—to the great questions which would then agitate the country; to which the cry of cheap sugar on the one hand, and no slavery on the other, would add ardour and intensity. Sir, I was in no way accessary to bringing in the present Government. I question whether they were justified in arriving at power by the combination they lent themselves to. I doubt if they were wise to accept office with so weak and divided a party; but I do feel strongly that the interests of this vast Empire are too important to be made the sport of mere party strife; that we cannot afford a Ministerial crisis every week; and that I ought, therefore, to be most cautious that no feelings of personal interest should prevent my giving an unbiassed consideration to this as to every measure brought forward by the new Government. Much, therefore, as I complain of the details of the new Sugar Duties Bill as they at present stand—much as I deprecate the encouragement which it may afford to slavery and the Slave Trade—strongly as I protest against the inconsistent policy for which West India property is to be endangered—I have nevertheless come to the conclusion that I shall best discharge my duty to those who sent me here, and at the same time best consult the ultimate interests of the producers of sugar in the British Colonies, by voting for going at once into Committee for the purpose of settling the question, in preference to supporting the Amendment of the noble Lord, by which that settlement would be indefinitely postponed.


Sir, the noble Lord who moved the Amendment to the Motion that you leave the chair, proposed to himself to establish three points for the consideration of the House. The first was, that this country has legitimate sources for the supply of all the sugar necessary for its consumption; the second, that the calculations of revenue under the Resolutions proposed by Her Majesty's Ministers were erroneous; and the third, that if we adopt these Resolutions, we should be stimulating that traffic in slaves which this House has so often and so indignantly reprobated. Sir, I have listened with great attention to the speech of the right hon. Gentleman the Chancellor of the Exchequer, a Member of the Cabinet, who has affected to give an answer to the speech of the noble Lord the Member for Lynn. I have not been inattentive to any of the addresses which followed the speech of the Chancellor of the Exchequer; and though it may be some of those speeches are remarkable for characteristics and circumstances, not bearing any relation to the subject immediately before us, still, looking at the speeches affecting to discuss this question which followed in the wake of the Chancellor of the Exchequer, I can find no answer to the speech of my noble Friend. The Chancellor of the Exchequer appears to me, with regard to the first proposition of the noble Lord the Member for Lynn, to have opposed to it an assumption; to have encountered the second proposition with an hypothesis; and he supposes he has vanquished the third by a sophism. Now, I am prepared, if the House will permit me, to sustain all the positions of the noble Lord the Member for Lynn. That noble Lord, in supporting his position that this country could legitimately be supplied with a sufficient and ample quantity of sugar for its consumption, has offered estimates which, if those estimates are correct, prove the dogma he laid down. Her Majesty's Ministers have no confidence in those estimates; but they have entered into no details and offered no facts to show that they are erroneous. Or rather to prove that the estimates of the noble Lord were erroneous, the first feature of the demonstration was, that the noble Lord the Member for Lynn had underrated a very important item. Her Majesty's Ministers estimated the produce of the West India Colonies at 125,000 tons; and the noble Lord had estimated it only at 115,000 tons. Well, then, at the first glance it would seem that the noble Lord, however erroneous his estimate, has not ventured to overstate the amount of free-grown sugar which may be obtained from our West India Colonies. Her Majesty's Ministers, who accuse my noble Friend of overstating quantities, have themselves, in the very first item, offered an estimate exceeding the estimate of the noble Lord. This shows that the noble Lord has not indulged in extravagant estimates. If we approach the second portion of the estimates of the noble Lord, I mean the produce of the Mauritius, I don't believe Her Majesty's Ministers, notwithstanding some inuendos—for so I must call them—I don't believe Her Majesty's Ministers are inclined to quarrel with this part of his estimate. The noble Lord estimated the produce of sugar of the Mauritius at 50,000 tons. My noble Friend has now corrected me, and says 58,000 tons; but I believe, in his speech, he calculated it at 50,000 tons. I believe that my noble Friend might have carried his estimate higher, for I have received this morning a copy of a Mauritius journal, of a most respectable character, which calculates the crop of sugar at upwards of 60,000 tons. Why, then, as far as anticipation goes, I believe, so far as we may rely upon testimony from the Mauritius itself, it is not in the power of Her Majesty's Ministers at all to substantiate their point against the noble Lord, that he has produced exaggerated estimates. But the Chancellor of the Exchequer says, that with respect to the third part of the noble Lord's estimate, he was fairly astonished. He cannot believe that India can furnish the quantity of sugar which my noble Friend supposes; and he warned the House against giving credit to that estimate. If we find that in one part of the estimate which the noble Lord has offered he is right; and in the second that his expectations are warranted by documents, and confirmed by evidence from the respectable quarter to which I have referred, we have a right to suppose that the same care and caution have governed him in the third; and that he has not without consideration offered to the House any calculation not founded upon data entitled to influence the opinion of the House, and which have not the sanction of thought and research. And I beg the House to bear in mind, that although the Chancellor of the Exchequer has expressed his incredulity as to the amount of Indian produce, he has not offered one single fact or argument to the contrary. He said, he was extremely astonished; and the hon. Baronet the Member for Beverley (Sir J. W. Hogg), who, upon sugar questions, should be a good authority, if we may judge from former debates, on whatever side his opinion might ultimately fall—that hon. Baronet, who tells us that this is a most important subject in the eyes of the Home Government of India, rose to the assistance of the unsupported position of the Chancellor of the Exchequer. But neither the Chancellor of the Exchequer, nor the hon. Baronet the Chairman of the Court of Directors, notwithstanding they expected this discussion and the arguments likely to be propounded—neither of these Gentlemen could find and offer a single argument or fact to induce the House to distrust the estimate of the noble Lord the Member for Lynn. Now in this case, with respect to the production of sugar in India, whilst this is the position of the Chancellor of the Exchequer, endorsed and ratified by the hon. Baronet the Member for Beverley, there is one consideration of great importance which has not been brought before the House, though it is a great element in the question, namely, the nature of the producers of sugar in India. The noble Lord (Lord John Russell) produced statements to show the amount of British capital invested in India, and how that British capital worked, and the results obtained from it, and that greater might be accomplished. But I want to bring this fact before the House, that the sugar of India is produced by two classes of persons, that is, British capitalists, who, we are told, need no protection, and it may be so; and the native ryots, who produce a sugar in India, who may require protection, and if they require protection, I will show that is a protection which will bring great results to this country, which will bring wealth to England, and not only commercial wealth, but political power. The hon. Baronet the Member for Beverley tells us that the sugar producers of India require no protection; that this is their own opinion; that meetings have been called and circulars issued; and they were to be satisfied with meetings of sugar producers which were never heard of, and the passing of resolutions which nobody ever knew. It may be true that these sugar producers are gentlemen who do not fear the measure of Her Majesty's Ministers—it may be true, as the hon. Baronet says, that these British capitalists in India do not fear competition: they do not fear competition in 1846, though I recollect they did in 1841. The hon. Baronet tells us that the condition of India is so improved in the five years that have elapsed, that the sugar producers of India do not now fear competition. I certainly think that the condition of India may have improved since 1841; for it could not have been worse. India had nearly become bankrupt; it required but an event, a circumstance, an hour, the transmission of a post, to prevent bankruptcy in India. Every one will admit this who knows the facts. I can prove it if documents can prove it; if writings by those who are acknowledged authorities can prove it, to any who are interested in, or care anything about India. No doubt the situation of India has been improved; it could not have been worse. I have a letter by me now very interesting, but with which I will not trouble the House, written at the very time when the hon. Baronet the Member for Beverley made his speech in 1841. It was written by a native Indian gentleman well known, and second to none in intelligence and patriotism, and stated that such would be the consequence of the commercial system that we pursued with respect to India, that ere long India would be too poor to govern. The writer said it was impossible for you to keep that country; that he would not insult you by appealing to your fears; that the danger that threatened you was not from national or political conspiracy, but that you would never be able to raise the necessary revenue; that your empire would crumble under you, and that in five years you would lose India. We are told now that the state of India is not as bad as it was then—that it is much improved at present. I shall show that the principal cause of this improvement in the condition of India is that alteration of your Sugar Duties which you are now called upon to repeal and abrogate. I have here the circular of a mercantile firm at Calcutta, who have a house in London. They said in 1841— Many mercantile men were surprised at the abatement of the West India duties and the admission of East India sugar on equal terms, but that those resolutions would benefit the country at large, and open a boundless market among the lower classes of Hindoos, many of whom had never seen a piece of cotton cloth in the whole course of their lives. They give now what they consider will be the consequence of the present alteration of the Sugar Duties on the Manchester manufacturers. They show the increase that has taken place in the fabrics used by the poorer classes in India. In 1837 and 1838 the total number of pieces of long cloths, jaconets, &c., was 190,000 pieces. In 1843 and 1844 the number had increased to 2,500,000 pieces; whereas the increase in the consumption of fabrics used by the richer classes who were not affected by the change in the Sugar Duties, was not nearly so large. In 1837 and 1838 the number of pieces of lappets, white cambrics, book muslins, &c. was 1,000,000; and in 1843 and 1844 it had only increased to 1,300,000 pieces. So that the fabrics used by the poorer classes have increased from 190,000 pieces to 2,500,000 pieces; while those in use among the richer classes have only increased from 1,000,000 pieces to 1,300,000 pieces. Let the House remember when we are called upon in the month of July, in this crude manner, to pass these important Resolutions on sugar, as if they were a part only of a commercial tariff, that the only cultivation of the soil in India which is not a monopoly is that of sugar. In the cultivation of indigo, cotton, lac, and the other products of the soil, the native can only be a labourer. I repeat, that the only privilege of the poor in that country, in which wages are the lowest and the interest of money the highest in the world, is the cultivation of sugar. This is the class which will mainly give you the sugar from India. It is not the English speculator who furnishes you with 20,000 tons, it is the peasantry of India; not the owners of vacuum pans and steam-engines who will send you the sugar to purchase these quantities of Manchester goods, and who, if supported in their intentions, will take more of your manufactures than any slave population in the world. There are 100,000,000 of your fellow subjects in India; and if every native would only buy a turban of you, it would produce an effect upon your manufactures greater than that of your whole foreign trade. If these 100,000,000 of your own fellow subjects could only take annually 10s. worth per head of your manufactures, you would derive 50,000,000l. from India—this India which you have so ill treated and so exhausted, and which, for the first time in the history of your commercial legislation, benefited by the late alteration in your Sugar Duties, so often referred to, and which you are now called upon violently to terminate. When I see what British capital can produce in the valley of the Ganges—when I see such results following the equalization of the duties on East and West India sugar—that produce was brought from places never heard of—and that persons came with consignments from districts which the most experienced person in Calcutta never dreamed would produce sugar—when I find in the letter read by my noble Friend the Member for Lynn last night, from Bell and Co., of Madras, that the produce of the present year would be one-third more than that of last year, namely, from 10,000 tons to 15,000 tons—when I find that, in another letter from an active partner in a mercantile house, that the extra produce of this year, in the valley of the Ganges, is 30 per cent, extending over a superficies of more than 70,000 acres—why should we suppose that the produce of Bengal should proceed at a slower rate than that of Madras, and that 100,000 tons would be an immoderate calculation of what we may expect from the East Indies next year? I have a right, then, to say, that the first position of the noble Lord (Lord G. Bentinck), that this country can be supplied with an ample quantity of sugar from its own possessions, has been met only by a sceptical assumption from the Chancellor of the Exchequer; and that, as respects the second point, as regards the revenue, the Chancellor of the Exchequer has only given up his sceptical assumption to take refuge in a credulous hypothesis. That noble Lord estimated the revenue of the country on data which came from a higher authority than that of the Chancellor of the Exchequer. He showed that there could not be an increase of revenue to the amount of more than 400,000l., and to prove this he took the estimate of the noble Lord the First Lord of the Treasury, the highest authority upon the subject. The latter noble Lord estimated the supply from our Colonies at 200,000 tons, the produce of free-labour sugar at 20,000 tons, and slave-labour sugar at 20,000 tons. The noble Lord the Member for Lynn made a calculation, which proved that on the noble Lord's own showing we could not obtain more than 400,000l. The Chancellor of the Exchequer demurred to the calculations of my noble Friend; but I shall prove that the Chancellor of the Exchequer has offered an estimate and a series of figures which may be right and connected, but which have a distinct difference from those of the First Lord of the Treasury. How does the Chancellor of the Exchequer calculate the probable supply of colonial and free-labour sugar? If the First Lord of the Treasury expected 20,000 tons of free-labour sugar, the Chancellor of the Exchequer turned that into 15,000 tons. With a rhetorical dexterity which Chancellors of the Exchequer are not often famous for, he immediately afterwards transmutes 20,000 tons of slave-grown sugar into 30,000. But who then are we to believe? Are we to believe the First Lord of the Treasury, who actually, though not formally, opened the debate, or the right hon. Gentleman the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whose speech may formally, though not virtually, be considered as answering the speech of the noble Lord near me? With regard, then, to the first point, no one has touched the estimates of my noble Friend. I think I have also shown the House that the criticisms of the noble Lord on the estimates of the Government, with respect to the revenue, are just and well considered. Figures are not party men. You may cross the House, but you cannot convert 15,000 tons into 20,000 tons. I now approach a subject which is more important and not less interesting. The noble Lord the Member for Lynn has not only wished to show the House and the country that from legitimate sources we can supply England with sugar; he has not only shown the House that there is a great and unsatisfactory inconsistency in the estimate made with respect to the revenue by Her Majesty's Ministers; but he has offered, for the adoption of the House, an Amendment expressing the opinion of himself and his Friends, that if the Resolutions of the Government are passed, a great stimulus will be given to slave labour. Now, often as this question has been discussed by the House of Commons—many as are the years that have elapsed since it was originated—many as are the Governments that have had to meet or to conduct such debates—this I think will be admitted, that under no circumstances, at no time, was this great question ever brought forward here, or met in a manner so remarkable. When we remember all that has been said upon this question; when we remember the parties that cry has formed—the Ministers, or rather the Ministries, it has made—the public men it has called into existence who never would have been public men, if they had not joined in the public cry—I think there is something rather remarkable in the way in which this question is now discussed, and now met. Far be it from me to suppose for a moment, or even to insinuate, that the First Minister of the Crown, or the right hon. Gentleman he has succeeded, or any of their Colleagues, are supporters of slavery. No one is a supporter of slavery; every one is filled with natural indignation at the thought of it. But all or many seem to be prepared to suppose that the evil is unavoidable—that it can no longer be politically resisted—and that if it be morally wrong, one thing is quite clear, that it is fiscally inevitable. I am not, perhaps, strictly in order in referring to the speech of the First Minister of the Crown; but, by the indulgence of the House, and the permission of the noble Lord, I hope I shall be permitted to do so, considering that that able and interesting speech was in fact the opening one of the debate. In that address, the noble Lord has taken up what may be considered a safe position on this subject. The noble Lord cannot forget that the party he represents, and of which it is his pride—his justifiable pride—to be the leader, is the Whig party that carried the abolition of the Slave Trade. The noble Lord is a man of great spirit, and would not, I am sure, under any circumstances, upon no consideration, to obtain no degree of power, for any lease of time, forget the glorious heritage to which he has succeeded. The noble Lord says all this is true; we deprecate still, we still denounce this infamous traffic; but then I have two fatal objections for you—it is true as an abstract philanthropist I am as ready to oppose the traffic as before, but you cannot deny this, that the Slave Trade exists—that it even flourishes—that it not only flourishes but increases. You cannot deny that it has baffled all our efforts. This I place before you, says the noble Lord, as an effectual, as the best, vindication of my course; this is the unanswerable argument with which we are to go to the hustings—if we are to go to the hustings—this I state to you, that all the efforts you have made, all the squadrons you have equipped, all the subscription lists you have swelled, all the devotion of nearly half a century, all the highest convictions, all the most fervent aspirations of a generous people, have not prevented this result—that what you have done is neither effectual nor complete. Well, Sir, if all that England has done on this great theme has failed in efficacy, has failed in completeness, I am not disposed to say that even a Whig Minister, that even a Whig party may not be authorized by urgent economic considerations to come before the Senate of the nation, and solemnly inform that assembly that they have committed a great public error, which, however it may redound to their credit as men, proves scarcely their prescience as politicians. But let us see, Sir, if this position, so painful to assume, and which nothing but the last necessity should authorize any Minister to assume, let us see if this position is just. The noble Lord says that the spirit of commerce baffles all philanthropy, all politics, all the strong convictions of the middle classes of this country, all the treaties of Secretaries of State, that all these sink before the energies of commerce. He says that the English merchant, while he denounces slave produce, is, in fact, by a circuitous, but to him quite natural process, exchanging English produce for the produce of slave labour; that is the first proof the noble Lord offers, that the great measure which the English people originated—not only sanctioned, but originated—has failed in efficacy. Now, with regard to such an argument, I must say, that at the first blush it appears to me to result in a superficial conclusion. The noble Lord tells us the energies of commerce were unanticipated; that whatever we chose to decide, commerce baffles us. I remember a right hon. Gentleman, no longer a Minister of the Crown, told us, on one occasion, this Session, that England is a great commercial country—that was announced as a great discovery; I ventured then to intimate that the commerce of England was not the creation of yesterday. The noble Lord seems to have now discovered, in addition, that the spirit of this commercial nation is also remarkably adventurous. Has the spirit of English commerce become so adventurous only in the year 1846? I take it for granted that if there has been any change in the spirit of English commerce, it is less adventurous now than formerly; from our increased knowledge, our more rapid means of communication, our better acquaintance with the resources and wants of foreign countries, a commercial venture has become a transaction. A merchant writes to his correspondent; his object is attained by return of post; and the consignment follows immediately upon the receipt of the letter. If there is any difference at all, English commerce, forty years ago, was more adventurous than it is now; a man with a cargo which he could not conveniently land at one place, would roam about from port to port, and made his arrangements accordingly. If that is true,—and I think none will dispute it—then I contend it says but little for the penetration of the great public men who took up this great public question, that they did not foresee this result. I visit upon the noble Lord, and upon those of whom he is the able successor, all the responsibility. I say those Whig statesmen had no right to take up this great public cause—one that they did not originate; that they had no right to join that public cry, not being acquainted with what must have been the inevitable commercial and political consequences of the measure. I do not use the term Whig statesmen in any spirit of party; I wish to offer the homage to that party which, with regard to the question of slavery, they are entitled to; but it does not tell for the penetration of the public men of that day, that they did not see these consequences. If I cannot suppose that they did not see them, then it fixes a stigma upon their ingenuousness, if, knowing them, they concealed them from the public; that stigma I am not willing to fix upon the present occupiers of the Treasury bench. But, says the noble Lord, your system not only wants efficacy, it wants completeness; you come here and denounce slave-grown sugar, and yet you are at this moment—the whole nation—members of anti-slavery and abolition societies, consuming slave-grown produce of another kind. Here is mock morality, says the head of Her Majesty's Government! Mock morality! Yes, it has come to this! But I ask the noble Lord, when Clarkson, and at a subsequent period, Wilberforce addressed those districts of the north of England which originated the great movement against slavery—at the moment when were pronounced the thrilling words that touched the heart of a great nation, when the horrors of that traffic were first revealed to the pure conviction of this country—I ask the noble Lord, whether at that moment the fabrics of the north of England were not fed with cotton the produce of slave labour? I ask him more; when that movement had succeeded, and when statesmen, as statesmen always do—with the instinct of aristocracy, saw it was irresistible, and might bear them into power; I ask him when the public men of that day—I care not to what party they belonged—put themselves at the head of that movement, addressing public assemblies, in which they expressed with cultured eloquence the deep convictions of an unlettered people—whether that people of England did not then smoke, and snuff, and chew—whether they had not for 200 years, been smoking, snuffing, and chewing slave-grown tobacco? That destroys your case. Can we believe that the people of England were not conscious of all this? Can we believe that these great statesmen were not conscious of all this? Why of course they were. But a practical people knew how to deal with circumstances. They said, we must put an end to those abominations we can control, and shut our eyes to those we cannot control. The people of England by their conduct, and the Whig leaders by theirs, are estopped from availing themselves of the flashy plea that is now put forward by the noble Lord. The very circumstances to which the noble Lord has referred are the materials of an argument against his position. I have no wish to argue the question abstractly; at the same time will the noble Lord come forward to the Table and lay it down as an abstract principle, that a man, because he is obliged to wink at a certain evil, is bound to commit a greater one. Whether I view it as an abstract or a concrete position, the noble Lord cannot escape the inevitable result. The noble Lord told us the other night that it would be well for the people of England to read Jeremy Taylor as well as Cicero. Jeremy Taylor is the great casuist of our literature. Let the noble Lord turn to the ductor dubitantium, and if he can there find any solution to assist his argument, I shall be surprised indeed. Well, then, I think I may say that the answer which was made to my noble Friend's third proposition was no sound argument, but a fallacious flashy sophism. You may carry a majority, you cannot convince them; you may give them words they may repeat to constituencies who will recoil with nausea from such phrases. I say, that the fact that Mr. Wilberforce was supported by men who patronized slave-grown cotton and slave-grown tobacco, estops these nice refinements of the year 1846. The people of England took the case as they found it; they were practical men; they said, "We have a great object to attain; we too, as well as our rulers, must have some open questions—slave-grown cotton, slave-grown tobacco must be an open question; all these things must be forgotten and endured for putting an end to the slavery which our own countrymen practise." And the same feeling animates them now: they cannot listen to your refinements, they don't wish to encourage slavery; nay, it would be a libel to suppose them indifferent to it—they will do all they can to prevent any stimulus to the Slave Trade. Well, but now the noble Lord and his Friends will deny that their measures will give any stimulus to the Slave Trade, and to that point I will now advert. The right hon. Gentleman the Chancellor of the Exchequer has informed us officially, authoritatively, that in Cuba at this moment, or very recently, such was the state of the slave society that there was a general disgust on the subject, and they absolutely wished to get rid of their slaves. There had been insurrections, as I had learned from other quarters; there had been a reduction of profits, which was equally known, and the result was such as he described. Well, then, my answer to you is, if there is that disposition in Cuba to put an end to slavery, why recommend a measure which even possibly may encourage the Slave Trade? We are told we must do this on account of great commercial considerations. Above all, it is the commerce of the Brazils that upon this and previous occasions has been brought elaborately before the notice of the House of Commons. I say the House of Commons—I don't use the ordinary phrase in this House, because I am speaking of another House of Commons, of which I had the honour to be a Member when the question of the Brazilian trade was first brought forward. I remember when a Gentlemen who may be now be sitting on the Treasury bench, used to make Motions on the subject of the Brazilian Treaty of Commerce. Its conclusion was impending, and though there were few Gentlemen at that time who knew anything about the Brazilian Treaty of Commerce, the right hon. Gentleman got up and said, "The Brazilian Treaty is about to cease—the question cannot be evaded—we must decide what we will do about sugar." That frightened everybody. The most unflinching opposers of free trade were staggered. They said, "This question of the Brazilian Treaty must be settled. The Brazilians give us notice; we must take it; a vast commerce is involved, and we may lose it all." But we have heard a right hon. Gentleman get up in his place since then and say that of all worthless things in existence, nothing is half so worthless as a treaty of commerce. I shall never forget the speech of another right hon. Gentleman, to whom, as I am informed he is absent, I will not further allude, than to say that his speech was listened to with great interest. That right hon. Gentleman made a speech on Brazilian commerce; he said it was no slight question. Our exports to Brazil amounted to 5,000,000l., with a revenue then daily declining. He produced a thrill of horror when he described the consequences which would ensue from the loss of that trade. That was urged as a reason for re-creating the Treaty of Commerce with Brazil six years ago; but this important commerce, it would seem, has fallen off one moiety during that period, for our exports do not rank as high now as three millions; and now, as if to exemplify the proverbial mystery of Brazilian statistics, the right hon. Gentleman the Chancellor of the Exchequer comes forward and quotes an authoritative communication from Brazil, in which his correspondent said—"We don't care what you do about your Sugar Duties; we have no sugar to send you. It is all the same to us, get sugar where you please; the demand is greater than the supply; your legislation is a matter to us of the most perfect indifference." What then becomes of the great case, that if you don't have a treaty of commerce with Brazil, the old story, or don't alter the Sugar Duties, the new story, you will lose your commerce with the Brazilians? What commerce? where will you forfeit it? how will you forfeit it? Answer that if you can. But if this is to be treated as a question of commerce, I have already given some intimation to the House how important the present arrangement of the Sugar Duties may be with reference to the interests of Manchester and the great towns in its neighbourhood. It becomes us to consider what really that commerce is which we have with the Brazils. The Brazilian nation!—the empire of the Brazils!—immense phrases! But when you recollect that the free population of Brazil is not that of a moiety of the metropolis in which we live, scattered over a country five times larger than England—that these proprietors possess two millions and a half of slaves—and that this is the Brazilian empire and nation—it becomes us to pause and consider whether we are about to be gainers by this transaction. Two millions and a half of slaves—of notoriously the worst customers; beings that are badly fed, and cheaply clothed. Well, to put the case fairly before the House, will you give up your commerce with English Colonies for commerce with a Portuguese Colony? It comes to that. It may not be so politically, but commercially Brazil is only a Portuguese Colony. When she makes treaties for the suppression of the Slave Trade, that country then assumes an imperial character. As regards her financial and commercial resources, Brazil offers you no more, or little more, than she did when she was a mere Colony of Portugal, and when you supplied her through the mother country. Well, take those West Indies that now no one defends—those forlorn Antilles—those islands which have to-night been delineated in so picturesque a manner by the hon. Member for Weymouth—those proprietors whom you have betrayed, and those slaves whom you emancipated; and I ask you now, in their lowest fortune, what are they as customers compared with the Brazils? Why, at this moment, as your customers, they greatly exceed the Brazils. But when you look at that great continent, which you have so long enjoyed and so long abused; when you look at the fortunes and capabilities of that great peninsula, connected as it is—from the proposition before the House—with this subject; if you take an enlarged and really statesmanlike view of your colonial resources and colonial capabilities, who, for a moment, would dwell upon our commerce with Brazil—a commerce which that country rejects, which it repudiates in comparison with India? The Brazilians tell you, indeed, in their own words, which you heard read by a Chancellor of the Exchequer, that they can offer no increased demand for your productions. What then, I say, is Brazil, what is Cuba, what is all the custom of Fonseca, compared with that of our own Colonies? But, Sir, I forgot; our colonial trade is only part of a "vicious circle." The Colonies of England, we are told by the First Minister of the Crown, are only a portion of a "vicious circle." I think it is desirable when Ministers of the Crown—I care not whether they be men of primal conviction or of recent conversion—or on which side of the Table they may sit—I think it is desirable that when, with their great power and position, they come forward and deliver themselves of these loose abstractions, they should deign to enter into some detail, and condescend to enter into some argument. I would rather say facts; of arguments the right hon. Gentlemen on both sides are great masters; but an argument in vacuo is proverbially worthless. When they tell us that we may emancipate ourselves from this vicious circle, it would be extremely interesting—it might be extremely advantageous—to the public, if they would give us, even in the vulgarest pounds, shillings, and pence, some idea of the profit and loss—if they would only strike a balance, say, "old-fashioned notions, so much," and then turn to enlightened principles and emancipated commerce, and prove that the effect of these new ideas and this novel course will at least be to increase our resources and to benefit our trade. But it is not our fortune to fall upon such times. I see one, who was a Minister of the Crown, who presented us with an income tax; I see another, who is a Minister of the Crown, who has almost promised us a deficiency. But if, after testing our colonial system under the greatest disadvantages—after taking the fag end of that system, which even the proprietors of the soil, notwithstanding all the flush prosperity which they have derived from it, have not the courage or the spirit to support; we find it so fertile of benefit and fruitful of advantage to this country, compared with the favourite district of abstract philosophy and Board of Trade management, I think the House must hesitate before it adopts the Resolutions of the noble Lord the Member for the city of London. I say "Board of Trade management," because no one can be insensible to the great, and for a long time secret, influence which has been exercised upon the commercial fortunes of this country, by almost unknown, and always irresponsible men. I say nothing of one departed—a man whom I knew and respected—Mr. Deacon Hume, who is now quoted by those who are or would be counsellors of the Crown. All I will say is, that, long before the Import Duties Committee was established, long before that evidence was given, to which with almost infantile ingenuousness I have heard statesmen of most mature years appeal as authority, Mr. Deacon Hume told me, that year after year, in the pages of an established and most respectable periodical, he had given all this evidence—he had communicated all this knowledge and communicated it in vain. But our statesmen never read, and are only converted by Parliamentary Committees. We have had another reference to a gentleman connected, I believe, with the same or a similar office—a most respectable gentleman; and I only mention him because the First Minister of the Crown brings forward the name of that gentleman to influence our opinions. The noble Lord (Lord J. Russell) while he expressed his opinions with that classic neatness and propriety which he displayed the other night, while he indicated—as I remember he before did in 1841—the remarkable inconsistency which he thought fatal to the anti-slavery cause, said, "These opinions are opinions which have been long adopted by men of intelligence, by Mr. M'Culloch and others." I will not say it would have been ingenuous on the part of the noble Lord (because I am sure he is incapable of anything intentionally disingenuous, and I think a Minister of the Crown is not called upon, in a formal statement, to make any unnecessary admissions which might destroy the general effect of his exposition); I will not say it would have been ingenuous, but I will say it would have been curious, if the noble Lord had told us, when he brought forward Mr. M'Culloch as an authority to influence the House on the arrangement and disposition of the Sugar Duties, that that gentleman was an honest, an honourable, but an avowed supporter of slavery as an institution. It would have been curious if the noble Lord had told us that in the very page of the very work to which he referred, Mr. M'Culloch has laid down his conviction, founded upon study, upon long observation, and I believe upon personal experience, that there is no delusion greater than the objection against slavery—that it is an institution that has worked well for the world and for society—that the cultivation of the tropics never could have been achieved without slavery—that, in every view, it is an institution far from being justly open to the opprobrium and denunciation which have been applied to it—and that it is to be viewed in quite a different light, and respected in quite a different spirit. Yet this is the authority to which the noble Lord appealed—an authority pensioned by one who was recently Prime Minister of this country, and praised by the noble Lord who is actually Prime Minister. Why, what must the country think of such an authority? There is a proverb in Turkish, with which I dare say the hon. Member for Bolton (Dr. Bowring) is familiar, that "fortunate is the fruit that is sunned on both sides." This gentleman is fruit of that description. Yet this admirer of slavery—this bold, honest, uncompromising supporter of that institution—is appealed to by the noble Lord, with that sort of adroit dignity and noble simplicity which characterize him. Mr. M'Culloch is brought forward—he is brought forward to control public opinion—M'Culloch versus Clarkson. Here is a great political economist, but his slavery tendencies are kept in the rear. He approves the noble Lord's principles: he has supplied the noble Lord with some of his arguments; but no one has yet, to this moment, announced that Mr. M'Culloch is an avowed and ardent supporter of slavery. Well, then, there is another gentleman connected with the Board of Trade whose authority is also quoted; he is a gentleman who would preach peace and goodwill to all men; and that is his principal argument in favour of the Slave Trade; it is his principal argument in favour of the achievements of Fonseca. This gentleman can listen to nothing which compromises a principle; and that is his answer to all our facts and all our reasons. But though this gentleman's argument is absurd, his absurdity has not the charm of novelty. There was also a gentleman, a pedant, who thought himself a philosopher, who said, at the time of the French Revolution, "Perish the world sooner than compromise a principle!" What was the fate of that individual? Ere twelve months had passed after he uttered this dictum, self-complacent as he was, he committed suicide in despair of the fortunes of the human race, and at his own impending catastrophe. I am bound to say, under these circumstances, I think that the argument which the Government has produced founded on our partial encouragement of slavery—that that argument which has been brought forward with such frequent ostentation, is an argument that cannot hold; that it has no foundation. But, Sir, I am not opposing the Resolutions of the Ministry merely on account of their antagonistic character in reference to our previous arrangements as to slavery. I do oppose them because they are hostile to what may be considered a fragment, but a fragment which I value, of the colonial system of England. Sir, these are for the moment old-fashioned notions; but in my belief they will yet be furbished up by the national approbation. Though it is only a fragment of that system which is now at stake—though you have fatally tampered with that system—though you have deprived it of many of its most beneficial phases, and this country of many of its greatest advantages—though in other instances you have followed an ignis fatuus, as deceptive and as destructive as that Brazilian trade about which you give us such contrary accounts—and not only contrary but unpromising accounts—still would I cherish the hope that this fragment may be preserved, because I believe that ere long you will have to rebuild the structure you have destroyed, and that you will have to retrace the steps which, in my opinion, you have so heedlessly pursued. And this I believe for two reasons: because it is not only from my conviction that your policy is wrong that I came to such a conclusion; that is not a sufficient reason, for all men may be mistaken, and every man who adopts an opinion flatters himself he is right; but because I have observed in our history that it is the characteristic of this country that it always retraces its steps. I believe the prosperity of England may be attributed to this cause, not that it has committed less blunders than other countries, but that the people are a people more sensible of their errors. The history of England is the history of reaction. Why, what have you not done, and what steps have you not retraced? You destroyed your Church Establishment, and you replaced it. You destroyed your ancient monarchy; and you re-established it. You destroyed the House of Lords; and now you are obliged to take up your Bills to them for their sanction. You even abolished this very House of Commons; and yet here we are assembled debating a great question. It is not more than 100 years ago, that in this House you chose to effect one of the greatest financial revolutions in the world. You were warned against it. An hon. Gentleman, then the leader of "the country party," rose and denounced the policy of Sir R. Walpole. You had, out of the House, the most gifted statesman and eloquent writer of that day affirming that, by adopting a system of indirect taxation, you were effecting the degradation of the people. And what happens now? Is there a man who speaks on the subject, who does not tell you that he approves of indirect taxation? Are you not retracing your steps on that important question? By the speeches of your ablest—by the votes of your most influential men, are you not proving that Sir William Wyndham was right, and that Lord Bolingbroke, was a true prophet? You say that you don't retrace your steps. Why, contrast the debate going on with what has previously taken place in this House as to the abolition of slavery. Here are Ministers of the Crown coming forward, and in the face of England acknowledging that for forty years we have been in error, and that they must now terminate for ever the greatest effort which the people for themselves ever commenced. You yourselves acknowledge that 50,000,000l. have been expended on this effort. The very men who came forward with measures against slavery now virtually tell you that the Slave Trade has baffled all their efforts; and, under their auspices, instead of their opponents you are about to become its tributaries. When you hear these very men and these very Ministers announcing that within the last forty years you have expended more than 50,000,000l. for the suppression of slavery, I ask how, when going to the hustings, will you explain the course which it is now proposed to adopt? Will not the people say—"What is this Parliamentary Government of England? These men who tell us they expended 50,000,000l. to put down slavery, now come forward and acknowledge that they have expended it only to effectuate a failure!" I believe that you will retrace your steps, reconstructing the great industrial system which you so rashly, and in circumstances so personally peculiar, destroyed. If it be an error—if this completion of a course which I denounce as mischievous be an error—then this can be said of the people, that in that error they have not participated. They did not send you here to destroy the colonial system of England. To you remains all the glory; and under no circumstances can they experience the shame. And now, Sir, I should no longer trespass upon the attention of the House, had I not remembered that there was one speech made in the debate last night, which I could not pass unnoticed. Sir, we heard last night a funeral oration delivered over the abolition cause by the noble Lord the Member for Liverpool (Lord Sandon). I thought if the subject was not choice, the orator, at least, was chosen. When I remembered another speech which that noble Lord made on the same subject, at a period not very remote, I must say he was the last person from whom I should have expected any criticism on the Resolution of my noble Friend (Lord G. Bentinck). Certainly the Resolution of the noble Lord the Member for King's Lynn, whatever the taste of others might have to object, did not contain that prudential parenthesis which appeared in the Resolutions of the noble Lord the Member for Liverpool in 1841. I cannot take upon myself, whatever may be my private opinion, to inform the House which is the authentic speech as regards the opinion of the noble Lord (Lord Sandon). By courtesy it is the speech of last night; by unction I should say it is the speech of 1841. It completes the picture of this eventful Session to see the noble Lord the Member for Liverpool mounted on a hogshead of sugar, in a white sheet, holding the taper of penitence, and crying "peccavi." At his last election I remember the noble Lord had carried before him a wooden bible. I am of opinion that the speech of last night was the wooden bible speech. I believe the litera vera may still be found in the speech of 1841. Notwithstanding the defection from our ranks of this chosen champion of sugar and anti-slavery, I still had thought that we might have fought a good battle for the good old cause if we could have enlisted on our side the wonted assistance of the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Tamworth. The right hon. Gentleman made a speech which, in my opinion, was an admirable resumé of every argument which could be adduced against the Resolutions of the noble Lord at the head of the Government. No one understands the West Indian question better than the right hon. Gentleman; there is not a detail which has escaped his thoughtful and vigilant attention; and I am sure that the somewhat solemn warning he gave to the noble Lord at the head of the Government to take care, if he facilitated immigration into the West Indies, that the free labourers should be accompanied by a sufficient supply of the gentler sex, would not be lost on the noble Lord. But great was the mortification of myself and my Friends around me, when we understood that that speech terminated by a resolution which was fatal to our hopes. The reason which was given, however, for the course which the right hon. Gentleman pursued was less ingenious and more surprising than most of the arguments we have heard even from him. If the right hon. Gentleman really is convinced, as no one can doubt, of the opinions which he expressed with so much ability, is it possible that our colonial empire—a population under such peculiar circumstances—is it possible that such great interests, which, if not national, are most important and extensive—is it possible that these are to be sacrificed for such minute considerations as who shall sit on that (the Ministerial) bench? I said, a few minutes since, that if we go to the hustings, and tell the people of England that 50,000,000l. of their treasure have been spent in prosecuting a delusion, perchance they may have some misgivings as to the excellence of this Parliamentary Government under which they have so long been living; but, when they are told that it is not a question of 50,000,000l., but of principles which they appreciate beyond all treasure, which are given up by one of the most gifted of our assembly against his conviction—for the sake of party convenience, and for the calculation as to "who should be the Minister of England;" then I fear it will be farewell to the Parliament of England. The right hon. Gentleman told us, indeed, that he could not under the circumstances of the case act otherwise than he did, because he could not see how any Government could be formed. I will not stop to notice the indecorous habit which has crept into the House of always speaking of the Government of this country as to be appointed and selected not by one out of the House, and in a higher position, but by the House itself. But this I will tell the right hon. Gentleman, that in my mind his forte lies not so much in forming a Government as in destroying one. These are the views, which I have imperfectly attempted to express, that have influenced the noble Lord the Member for Lynn and my Friends around me in resisting the Resolutions of the Government. I am glad to believe that there is not a Member of that Government—that there is scarcely a Member of the House, who will suppose that, in the course which we have taken, we have been influenced by an illegitimate or sinister feeling. I can fairly say that as regards the Government themselves—remembering the circumstances under which those noble Lords and right hon. Gentlemen acceded to power, remembering that I myself as a member of the majority that virtually placed them on that (the Ministerial) bench—cannot—ought not to shrink from the minute portion of responsibility falling even to me, I should feel that it was a step greatly to be deprecated and long to be pondered over, before, immediately after they had obtained power, we placed ourselves in collision with them. But I cannot believe—I cannot see—that any other course could have been taken by us than that which we have pursued. I believe that there is not a Member of the Government who can suppose that I am expressing opinions and sentiments which I do not feel; and if the Government cannot impute such motives to us, still less do I believe that any other Gentleman in the House, or party in the country, can imagine that we have been influenced by any factious or selfish feeling. The Members of the West Indian body did not stand by us (the protectionists) "in the hour of death and the day of judgment;" and many Gentlemen have said to me "Why should we support them?" I believe that they thought that by not fighting the battle then, they might still gain time; it is the policy of the weak; and it seems by the admission of the right hon. Gentleman, they might have been saved perchance for a year. Perhaps it is better that the catastrophe should be consummated. Perhaps it is better that if the system of protection is to be put an end to, that it should be put an end to under existing circumstances, and by this protection Parliament, which was elected virtually by the success of a Motion which pledged the Commons of England to support the colonial interests. I heard the other night the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Tamworth express the considerations that induced him to come to the conclusion at which he had arrived. I challenge the propriety of that resolution; I impugn the sagacity of that decision; I deny the assumed necessity on which it was founded. On the contrary, I say that the noble Lord at the head of the Government might more fairly have come forward and said, "This is not a vital question, I should think, since, when the right hon. Gentleman led the Ministry and the Parliament of England in 1830, he was opposed and defeated on the Sugar Duties, and yet he did not think fit to resign." The noble Lord might have said, "I have been called to power under peculiar Parliamentary circumstances—I have received a quasi confidence from those who are opposed to me on great constitutional principles, and I have told them in a memorable speech"—a speech which did not in any degree compromise the position of the noble Lord—"I have told them that I am not anxious to disturb the peace and public mind of England; that I am not desirous of bringing forward any question which should place us in collision. I have received a quasi confidence from a party who, on account of their numbers, are not to be despised, and I see before me one who has been a Minister, eminent for his ability, but who has pursued a course which, right or wrong, has forfeited for ever the confidence of Parliamentary England; and considering all these circumstances, considering that the right hon. Gentleman himself was once in a similar position, and did not think fit to resign; considering that there is in this House of Commons no evidence of a hostile or factious opposition; considering the position of the right hon. Gentleman himself, which is one which gives him great influence in this House, but who is deprived for ever of any influence in the country—I think I am only doing my duty to my country and my Sovereign by, whatever may be the opinion of the House on this question, retaining power." I believe that if under these circumstances the noble Lord had remained in power, he would have remained with honour—with honour to his party and credit to himself, and I am willing to believe, with advantage to the country; but the course taken by the noble Lord has left none other to us but to give it a hearty, honest, and most sincere opposition. I call, therefore, on every Member of the House who may be meditating on his decision to decide with us; and I tell them that whatever may be the result, of this I am certain, that if it is carried against us, it is a decision that will give another, perhaps a last blow to the character of public men, and I am sure that it will be received by those out of the House who sent us here with blended feelings of sorrow and indignation.


Sir, in rising towards the close of this debate to address some observations to the House, I must, in the first place, most willingly declare that my noble Friend, whether in the Motion that he has made, or whether in the speech with which he prefaced that Motion, has not proposed anything or said anything of which I personally can have the least reason to complain. The noble Lord, no doubt believing in the truth of his own principles, has declared his opposition to the plan of the Government, and has asked this House, in a Parliamentary Resolution, to declare its opinion on the subject. But, Sir, that Resolution does affirm principles which, I think, go far beyond the condemnation of the immediate plan before the House. I could understand my noble Friend, however, saying this is a very late period of the Session; it is impossible to alter the whole system of your Sugar Duties without considering other questions which are involved in it; let us have further time for consideration; we, therefore, must vote against the adoption of the plan before us; but we shall be ready at the commencement of another Session to take that or any other plan which the Government may have matured, into consideration. I can well understand that that course might have been taken by my noble Friend, and he might indeed have been supported in it by a majority of the House, and the Government might still think themselves justified in continuing to administer the affairs of this country. Sir, the course which my noble Friend has taken is widely different from that. It declares, in the first place, as I think, an adherence on the part of this House to the principles of commercial protection. It declares, in the next place, that the plan before the House is calculated to give a stimulus to the Slave Trade. It altogether condemns, upon those two allegations, the whole plan which has been submitted to the consideration of this House of Parliament. Sir, I will endeavour, in the first place, to touch upon some few of those topics to which my noble Friend adverted, and which the hon. and learned Gentleman who has just sat down has repeated, and I will then ask the House to consider what may be the effect of the adoption of the Resolution now before them. My noble Friend commenced with a statement as to the production of the Colonies, but more especially as to the produce of British India. I am not going at present to follow him in any calculations with regard to the amount of sugar that may be introduced into this country from India during the present year, I would call your attention to the principle upon which my noble Friend proceeds. It is, that you should endeavour to create an interest in India for the production of sugar, by giving a higher price for that sugar than it would otherwise obtain if you did not by law interfere. Now, Sir, a worse instance of the adoption of a protective policy I could not well conceive. I can well understand with respect to corn, with respect to any production which has been long favoured by law, that any Minister may say, "This is a system which it is very difficult to touch; there is too great a part of our population whose interests are involved in the production which you interfere with; too many interests have grown up under the ancient system which you are about to disturb; it is impossible for me, therefore, unless very gently, to interfere with those interests." But my noble Friend says nothing of that kind. His is not that limited and partial defence of protected interests which Mr. Huskisson and others have at various times adopted. My noble Friend says, you must raise up a protected interest; you must by law create a protected interest; you must give to the sugar of India an advantage in the market of England by raising the price by law, in the hope that in some future year you will obtain such a production as may suffice for the consumption of the people of this country. Now I am not going to argue the question of protection and free trade; but this I wish to point out to the House, that unless they are ready to recall their former votes—unless they are persuaded not only that protection ought not to be interfered with when established, but that it is in itself an admirable system for the welfare of the country, and that it ought to be invented and cherished where it does not now exist—unless the House is prepared to come to that opinion, they cannot well assent to the Resolution of my noble Friend. Well then, Sir, the hon. Gentleman who has just sat down entered into some statements with regard to the revenue. Now, I am not going to follow him into figures upon that subject either, but I will observe that both he and my noble Friend seem entirely to cast out of their calculations that which we calculate upon, and what I think we justly calculate upon, that with diminished duties and diminished price there will be increased consumption; that with increased consumption you will have additional importations; and that with additional importations you must have an increase of revenue. My noble Friend, on the contrary, seems to me to take exactly the same figures whatever may be your amount of duty, and supposes that with a very high amount of duty you have exactly the same consumption as that you would have with the diminished duties which we have proposed to the House. But, Sir, a more important question, and upon which the hon. Gentleman who has just sat down asks the House to agree to the proposition of my noble Friend, is the last part of his proposition, that the plan which is now before the House will give a stimulus to the Slave Trade. Sir, upon that subject I must say that the hon. Gentleman who has just sat down was led by his exuberance of fancy into a most extraordinary confusion of ideas. The hon. Gentleman seemed to suppose, because we have said, and have said for these five years past, that we did not think that the exclusion of slave sugar, and of slave sugar alone, of all slave produce, from the markets of this country, could be permanently kept up as an efficient system, that therefore we are ready to say that the abolition of slavery was in itself a failure. Why, Sir, no two propositions are more distinct. When the hon. Gentleman says that Mr. Wilberforce and Mr. Clarkson, in proposing the abolition of the Slave Trade, and in desiring the abolition of slavery, never objected to the consumption of slave-grown cotton, it is obvious that their proposition and the question of the consumption of slave-grown cotton had no conceivable relation to each other. They said, "Let us abolish the Slave Trade; let us abolish the Slave Trade carried on between our Colonies and Africa." Mr. Wilberforce said afterwards, "Let us in our own Colonies abolish slavery." With that proposition the consumption of the produce of other countries having slaves had no immediate relation. But after these plans had been adopted, after these measures had been carried into effect, there then arose another question, and it arose accidentally, rather than from any fixed purpose, and that was whether you should give a protection to your own Colonies against all sugar which was the produce of the slave Colonies of other countries. And thereupon arose the question, whether, in the first place, that was defensible upon the principles of protection; and, in the second place, whether, not being defensible on the principles of protection, there was any ground of morality upon which you could defend that protection? Sir, we maintain that you could not; but, at the same time, with regard to that great question, in the first place, of the prohibition of the Slave Trade; and, in the next place, of that great measure in which I had the honour of bearing a part as an advisor of the Crown, namely, the abolition of slavery in the British Colonies; I still hold to those two great measures as wise and righteous measures, as measures founded upon sound principles, as measures justified by humanity, as measures which experience has sanctioned, and which no House of Parliament would, I venture to say, ever propose to disturb. But, Sir, the question that we have now before us is, as I have already pointed out to the House, a totally different one. It is this question, whether, not prohibiting the admission of slave cotton, of slave copper, of slave rice, of slave tobacco, and of all the other products of slave labour, you do in effect put any effectual check on the Slave Trade, and on slavery, by the single prohibition of slave-grown sugar? Now, my noble Friend said, that in quoting these examples, I was only justifying one wrong by another; that I was using the old argument, that if I must be hanged for a lamb, why not be hanged for a sheep? But, Sir, I do not admit the wrong. I do not admit that it is wrong to take slave-grown cotton, or slave-grown rice, or slave-grown tobacco, or any of those other slave-grown products. I do not admit that it tends to civilization, that it is wise, that it would further the cause of humanity in the world, if you were to declare that in your Tariff and your Custom-house books, you would take an exact account of the manner in which certain articles were first produced, and afterwards brought to the ports from which they were embarked for this country. Let us, Sir, suppose at an early stage of the affairs of Europe any such principle had been adopted—suppose our ancestors had examined into our trade with Asia, our trade with the various countries in India, or our trade with Africa, and had said that with none of those countries would we trade if we found that slavery existed in those countries, and that their practices were barbarous and inhuman: will any man say if such had been the case—if, on the ground of humanity, such had been the policy of this great commercial nation—mankind would be in a better situation than they now are? Will any man say that the commercial intercourse of this great and civilized country with Asia and with Africa has not tended to mitigate the barbarous practices which have existed in India and in other countries? And on the whole review of the state of the world, will any person say that it has not produced a far more happy relationship between men and men than would have been the case if you had proceeded upon a narrow and exclusive principle, which, though it seemed humane, would have really turned out to be a barbarous and an injurious policy? Such, Sir, I think, is a fair deduction from the principles which the hon. and learned Gentleman has put forward. My right hon. Friend near me has quoted the opinions of the Anti-Slavery Society of Liverpool. The opinions of that society are to this effect:— That freedom is served by the admission of slave-labour produce, and not by the exclusion of it. They are of opinion that free labour, when brought into competition with slave labour, can be made much more productive and profitable than otherwise. They cannot but regard the system of a continuance of protection duties upon free labour as a virtual and practical declaration that that argument is foolish and untenable. They believe that sugar will be successfully produced by free labour, and thereby the most convincing lesson will be exhibited to slaveholding countries that their true interests are inseparably connected with the immediate and entire renunciation of this odious system. Such, Sir, is the opinion expressed by the Anti-Slavery Society of Liverpool. I hold in my hand a report from a different body—namely, the Standing Committee of West India planters and merchants—made this year. They say— To undersell the produce of slave labour by the produce of free labour, is the only good evidence of economy that will have any practical influence in discouraging the former. Without that they believe that all our efforts will be useless, and will be equally unnecessary. The simple plan to adopt for the abolition of slavery is to render its continuance unprofitable by cheaper productions, and to destroy the demand for slaves by affording an abundant supply of free labour. That remedy has not as yet been tried, and it is now for the first time attempted. If it be fully carried out, it will afford the most certain prospect of success. Now, Sir, these two opinions are in their expressions identical; and yet they come from two very different bodies—the one from the Anti-Slavery Society of Liverpool, and the other from the Standing Committee of the West India body, who are deeply interested in the preservation of our Colonies. I say, then, that no man has a right to assert that the plan we propose tends to increase the Slave Trade and slavery. Let me take another step in the argument, and let me endeavour to show you that the present system actually prevents what free labour would undoubtedly effect. That argument is no other than the well-known argument which experience has repeatedly shown to be well founded—namely, that the effect of monopoly and protection is always to check exertion, to diminish enterprise, to prevent the full and fair results of the capital, the skill, and the labour of those engaged in any branch of agriculture or manufacture. What is the case in the West Indies? We have had, during the last two or three years, some evidence given before the Committee of the House of Assembly of Jamaica, and in pamphlets written by persons who were well acquainted with the West Indies. All these go to show that the cost of production of sugar is very much greater than it need be if they had all the advantages of machinery, or if the applications of skill were used which modern science and modern industry have suggested. I have a pamphlet before me in respect to the cultivation of sugar in the West Indies, which shows the plan recommended to be generally well founded. The author may have exaggerated expectations on the subject. I have, however, no doubt that there is much truth in his statements. He declares that the hundred weight of sugar which now costs for its production 26s., might be produced at a cost of only 14s. Now, I do not rely with confidence upon these particular figures. I do not say that they are precisely correct, but I am decidedly of opinion that there might be very great economy exercised in regard to the manufacture of sugar under the circumstances to which I have just referred, and if those Colonies were exposed to competition. It is competition, and competition alone, which ever does bring out enterprise and economy. I have spoken of late years to various persons who were engaged in various branches of manufacture, and I have asked them what their opinions were in respect to the great advance made in machinery during the late years. They all answered me by saying that the great press of competition had of necessity led to the great improvement of machinery, and encouraged a resort to every species of economy, in order that their produce might not be undersold in the markets of the world. The same stimulus, if applied to the West India Colonies, my belief is, instead of damaging their interests, would considerably raise them, and would enable them to flourish in a much greater degree than they could ever do for many years under the present system. An hon. Gentleman who has spoken to-night has made a statement which I was sorry to hear—namely, that he knew of one person who had resolved not to send out any further supplies to his property in the West Indies; and that he would not cultivate his estate there any longer. I believe that if other persons would undertake the cultivation of these estates, and use the proper machinery requisite for them, there could be no better speculation than to advance money for West India production even at the present day. The hon. Gentleman who has just sat down has alluded to some other points on which I wish to touch before I conclude my address to-night. With regard to the opinion of Mr. M'Culloch, I wish merely to notice this point for one purpose. Mr. M'Culloch usually does me the honour to send me a copy of his works. The last work was one upon Taxation. He sent me a note with it, stating that he hoped I should approve of the greater part of that work; but with respect to his opinions therein expressed upon slavery, he knew that I disagreed with him. I know Mr. M'Culloch to be an able and well-informed writer; and yet, upon that particular question of slavery, he and I widely differed, and shall continue to differ, in opinion. The hon. Gentleman having been led away by an erroneous impression, seemed to imagine that I had said our Colonies formed a part of a vicious system. On the contrary, I said that the Colonies were a great part of the strength of the Empire, and I trusted that they would ever flourish. But this I did say, that the ancient system by which the mother country had refused to allow her Colonies to send their produce anywhere else but to the mother country, and obliged the Colonies to take only their goods from the mother country—I said that this was a vicious system, to both the mother country and to the Colonies, and that both would flourish far better under an improved and a more rational system. Now, this is a point of the utmost importance. I know that there are many who say, that if it were not for this ancient system we should not have achieved that prosperity in our Colonies which you wish to destroy. I declare, on the contrary, that the colonial system ought to be altered, and that both the mother country and the Colonies would flourish much better under an altered system. But with regard to the attachment between both—to the connexion of union between them, no person can more firmly adhere to the colonial system, or can more heartily desire the prosperity of our Colonies, than I have always done, and shall continue to do. The hon. Gentleman made, I think, some very curious remarks as to the policy of this country, and the experience he has derived from what, he says, he has observed in respect to political economy. His observation, it appears, has led him to the conclusion that this country was always retracing her steps. Now, a more extraordinary discovery, and one less expected by me, could not have been made. No doubt there may be particular cases in which Parliament has repealed Acts that it had previously passed, or has found reason to modify some of them; but that this country has ever gone back, or, after having adopted an improved system, has gone back to errors which she had already exploded, I utterly deny that that is the characteristic of this country. I do not refer now to what had occurred in those times of violence when the Throne and Parliament were scattered by the decision of the House of Commons acting with usurped authority, and which itself fell before the Protector's sword; but I speak of those days when we had a regular government after the restoration of the House of Stuart. Nothing can be more apparent, nothing more clear, nothing more beautiful to the reader of history, than to see the progress of this country in improvement since then, and the determination which it has ever exhibited of maintaining its conquests of reason. In those days of which I now speak, personal liberty was not safe. Persons were imprisoned at the will of the Sovereign, and sent to any distant place of confinement. The Habeas Corpus statute was passed; but has the country ever retraced its steps with respect to it—have we said that personal liberty ought to be at the will of a monarch? The Revolution took place, and the Bill of Rights was passed. Have we ever repealed the Bill of Rights—has any one ever proposed that the rights secured by Parliament then should be again renounced, and that we should again embrace the dark and slavish political system which flourished under Charles II.? The press was under a censorship: it was set free. Has it ever again been placed under censorship? The Dissenters were fined, imprisoned, and persecuted, because they preached doctrines which they believed to be true. The Act of Toleration was passed; and has the country ever again descended to persecution—has it ever been proposed that we should retrace our steps and make it penal for a man to preach what he believes to be the will of God to the congregation around him? With respect to a great question of later days—with regard to that great act in which Mr. Wilberforce took so great a part—the abolition of the Slave Trade; has it ever been proposed, either in this or the other House of Parliament, that the Slave Trade should be restored, that we should retrace our steps with regard to that measure? I might allude to other measures, if they were not likely to be the cause of difference of opinion among Members of this House; but I think I may safely risk the assertion, that, with respect to the enjoyment of the religious liberty which we now have—when Members of this House may be Protestants, Dissenters, or Roman Catholics, or of the profession of any form of Christian faith in which they believe—there is no party in this House who would wish to restore the disabilities and disqualifications under which they laboured. Then, I say, my conclusion is exactly opposite to that of the hon. Gentleman—I say, that, whatever small incidents he may be able to quote to the contrary, whenever a question has passed under discussion, and the leaders in Parliament have taken a decided part in repealing restrictions or prohibitions, or in bettering securities for the liberty of the subject—when the mind of the country has been awakened to, and has discussed, and weighed, and measured all those matters, and the question is settled and decided—that with respect to these great questions you will find that the triumph has been permanent—that the triumph of reason, of liberty, and of truth has been gained without convulsion, and has remained without risk of reverse. My noble Friend who began this debate, and the hon. Gentleman after whom I am now speaking, contemplated the passing of this Resolution; and at the same time, with the greatest courtesy to Her Majesty's present Ministry, they contemplated that after the passing of this Resolution Her Majesty's Ministers could continue with benefit to administer the affairs of this great country. Sir, I thank my noble Friend for the courtesy with which he spoke of us. I have, as I said, nothing to find fault with either in his making this Motion, or in the terms of the speech in which he introduced it. But the Resolution itself is completely subversive of the policy I wish to establish. It is a complete censure of the course which we, in this first great measure that we have proposed in the House of Commons, have recommended to their adoption as a course calculated for the benefit of the people of this country. Sir, I had hoped, in taking upon myself, together with my Colleagues who have done me the honour to act with me, the administration of affairs at a time when there was no certainty of a party to support us—when I could not say I had a majority of political adherents who would enable me to carry my measures—I had hoped that after a period of angry contest—after a period in which a measure had been carried with more violence of opposition than has been usual in this House, that there would be that kind of acquiescence on the part of a great majority of the Members of this House, that would allow the Ministers of the Crown to develop their policy, that would allow them to administer the affairs of the country until they could take a settled course, and that then a majority of the House would be able to decide whether that course did suit their views of public interest, their views of moderation, their views of the permanent maintenance of the institutions of this country, to which I believe the majority of this House is attached. With that expectation, therefore, I did feel what an hon. Gentleman some few days ago called the presumption—I did feel sufficient presumption—to induce me to undertake the administration of the affairs of this country. But, Sir, I did not think any Ministry would carry on the affairs of this country with advantage, either as regards its domestic affairs, or as regards its character in the face of foreign Powers, unless it had the respect of this House and of the country; and I should feel that if I tamely acquiesced in such a Resolution as my noble Friend has proposed—if I should consent to go on, having my own course censured and the policy of my noble Friend adopted in its stead—I should be exposing my Administration to contempt. I should be injuring the dignity of the Crown, whose servant I am; I should be injuring the reputation of the Government of which I should be nominally at the head; and I should be even diminishing in some degree the glory of the great nation to which we all belong. I could not, therefore, I frankly confess, carry on the affairs of this country if my noble Friend's Resolution were to be adopted by the House. I am of opinion that if that policy is the policy of this House, and if that Resolution correctly represents the opinion of the majority of this House, that Her Majesty would do well to place office in the hands of those who possess the confidence of that majority; but it would be a policy of which I could not approve, and a policy to which I could not give my assent. Those, however, who adopt that policy would, in that case, have a right to say, "We have a majority in this House; we bring forward the policy in which we are sincere believers, and which is approved of by a majority of the representatives of the people, and, we believe, by the people at large." That would be a constitutional and intelligible course to take; and the people would then be able to judge whether the policy of my noble Friend, or the policy of the late Administration, or the policy of the present Government, was the policy of which they approve. But for a Government to hold office, degraded by the Resolution of my noble Friend, brought forward on the very first measure they proposed to Parliament—to hold office thus debased, would be to do permanent injury to the Constitution of this country; and I feel that I should not be justified in continuing to administer public affairs on those terms.

On the Question, "That the words proposed to be left out stand part of the Question," House divided:—Ayes 265; Noes 135: Majority 130.

List of the AYES.
A'Court, Capt. Barkly, H.
Aglionby, H. A. Baring, rt. hon. W. B.
Ainsworth, P. Barnard, E. G.
Aldam, W. Barren, Sir H. W.
Anson, hon. Col. Bell, J.
Antrobus, E. Bellew, R. M.
Archbold, R. Benbow, J.
Arundel and Surrey, Earl of Berkeley, hon. C.
Berkeley, hon. Capt.
Attwood, J. Berkeley, hon. H. F.
Baine, W. Berkeley, hon. G. F.
Bannerman, A. Bernal, R.
Barclay, D. Blackburne, J. I.
Blake, M. J. Goulburn, rt. hon. H.
Borthwick, P. Graham, rt. hon. Sir J.
Botfield, B. Greene, T.
Bouverie, hon. E. P. Grey, rt. hon. Sir G.
Bowes, J. Grosvenor, Lord R.
Bowring, Dr. Guest, Sir J.
Bridgeman, H. Hall, Sir B.
Bright, J. Hamilton, W. J.
Brotherton, J. Harcourt, G. G.
Brown, W. Hastie, A.
Browne, R. D. Hatton, Capt. V.
Browne, hon. W. Hawes, B.
Buller, C. Hay, Sir A. L.
Buller, E. Hayter, W. G.
Byng, rt. hon. G. S. Heathcoat, J.
Carew, hon. R. S. Heneage, G. H. W.
Carnegie, hon. Capt. Heneage, E.
Cavendish, hon. C. C. Herbert, rt. hon. S.
Cavendish, hon. G. H. Hervey, Lord A.
Chapman, B. Hindley, C.
Christie, W. D. Hobhouse, rt. hn. Sir J.
Clay, Sir W. Hogg, Sir J. W.
Clements, Visct. Hollond, R.
Clerk, rt. hon. Sir G. Holmes, hon. W. A'C.
Clifton, J. T. Hornby, J.
Colebrooke, Sir T. E. Horsman, E.
Collett, J. Hoskins, K.
Collins, W. Howard, hon. C. W. G.
Courtenay, Lord Howard, hon. E. G. G.
Cowper, hon. W. F. Howard, P. H.
Craig, W. G. Howard, Sir R.
Crawford, W. S. Hume, J.
Curteis, H. B. Humphery, Ald.
Dalmeny, Lord Hutt, W.
Dalrymple, Capt. James, W.
Dashwood, G. H. James, Sir W. C.
Denison, W. J. Jermyn, Earl
Denison, J. E. Jervis, J.
Denison, E. B. Jocelyn, Visct.
Dennistoun, J. Johnson, Gen.
D'Eyncourt, rt. hn. C. T. Johnstone, Sir J.
Dickinson, F. H. Labouchere, rt. hon. H.
Divett, E. Langston, J. H.
Douglas, Sir C. E. Lascelles, hon. W. S.
Duckworth, Sir J. T. B. Layard, Capt.
Duke, Sir J. Leader, J. T.
Duncan, Visct. Le Marchant, Sir D.
Duncan, G. Lemon, Sir C.
Duncombe, T. Lincoln, Earl of
Dundas, Adm. Listowel, Earl of
Easthope, Sir J. Macaulay, rt. hon. T. B.
Eastnor, Visct. Mackinnon, W. A.
Ebrington, Visct. M'Carthy, A.
Ellice, rt. hon. E. M'Donnell, J. M.
Ellis, W. Maitland, T.
Elphinstone, Sir H. Mangles, R. D.
Escott, B. Marjoribanks, S.
Esmonde, Sir T. Marshall, W.
Etwall, R. Marsland, H.
Evans, W. Martin, J.
Evans, Sir De L. Maule, rt. hon. F.
Ewart, W. Milnes, R. M.
Ferguson, Col. Mitcalfe, H.
Ferguson, Sir R. A. Mitchell, T. A.
Fleetwood, Sir P. H. Moffatt, G.
Flower, Sir J. Morpeth, Visct.
Forster, M. Morris, D.
Fox, C. R. Morrison, J.
French, F. Mostyn, hon. E. M. L.
Gibson, rt. hon. T. M. Muntz, G. F.
Gill, T. Napier, Sir C.
Gisborne, T. Neville, R.
Gore, hon. R. Nicholl, rt. hon. J.
Norreys, Sir D. J. Smith, B.
O'Brien, C. Smith, J. A.
O'Brien, T. Smith, rt. hon. R. V.
O'Connell, M. J. Smythe, hon. G.
O'Conor Don Somers, J. P.
O'Ferrall, R. M. Somerville, Sir W. M.
Ogle, S. C. H. Spooner, R.
Osborne, R. Stanley, hon. W. O.
Oswald, A. Stansfield, W. R. C.
Oswald, J. Staunton, W. H.
Owen, Sir J. Staunton, Sir G. T.
Paget, Col. Stewart, P. M.
Paget, Lord A. Stuart, Lord J.
Palmerston, Visct. Stuart, H.
Parker, J. Strutt, E.
Pattison, J. Sutton, hon. H. M.
Pechell, Capt. Talbot, C. R. M.
Peel, rt. hon. Sir R. Tancred, H. W.
Peel, J. Thesiger, Sir F.
Pendarves, E. W. W. Thornely, T.
Philips, G. R. Tomline, G.
Philipps, Sir R. B. P. Tower, C.
Philips, M. Towneley, J.
Phillpotts, J. Traill, G.
Pigot, rt. hon. D. Trench, Sir F. W.
Plumridge, Capt. Troubridge, Sir E. T.
Polhill, F. Tuite, H. M.
Ponsonby, hn. C. F. A. C. Turner, E.
Power, J. Vane, Lord H.
Price, Sir R. Villiers, hon. C.
Protheroe, E. Wakley, T.
Pryse, P. Wall, C. B.
Pusey, P. Warburton, H.
Ricardo, J. L. Ward, H. G.
Rich, H. Wawn, J. T.
Romilly, J. White, S.
Ross, D. R. Williams, W.
Rumbold, C. E. Wilshere, W.
Russell, Lord J. Wood, rt. hon. C.
Russell, Lord E. Wood, Col. T.
Russell, J. D. W. Worsley, Lord
Rutherfurd, A. Wortley, hon. J. S.
Sandon, Visct. Wyse, T.
Scrope, G. P. Yorke, H. R.
Seymour, Lord Young, J.
Seymour, Sir H. B.
Sheil, rt. hon. R. L. TELLERS.
Shelburne, Earl of Tufnell, H.
Sheridan, R. B. Hill, Lord M.
List of the NOES.
Ackers, J. Brooke, Lord
Acland, Sir T. D. Buller, Sir J. Y.
Acton, Col. Carew, W. H. P.
Allix, J. P. Chapman, A.
Astell, W. Chelsea, Visct.
Austen, Col. Chichester, Lord J. L.
Bagot, hon. W. Christopher, R. A.
Baillie, Col. Chute, W. L. W.
Baillie, H. J. Clayton, R. R.
Baldwin, B. Codrington, Sir W.
Bankes, G. Collett, W. R.
Benett, J. Compton, H. C.
Bennet, P. Deedes, W.
Bentinck, Lord G. Dick, Q.
Blackstone, W. S. Disraeli, B.
Blakemore, R. Douglas, Sir H.
Bodkin, W. H. Douglas, J. D. S.
Boldero, H. G. Duncombe, hon. O.
Briscoe, M. Du Pre, C. G.
Broadley, H. East, J. B.
Broadwood, H. Fellowes, E.
Finch, G. Mackenzie, W. F.
Fitzmaurice, hon. W. M'Clintock, W. B.
Floyer, J. Manners, Lord C. S.
Forbes, W. Masterman, J.
Forester, hon. G. C. W. Maunsell, T. P.
Forman, T. S. Maxwell, hon. J. P.
Fox, S. L. Mildmay, H. St. J.
Frewen, C. H. Miles, P. W. S.
Fuller, A. E. Miles, W.
Gardner, J. D. Morgan, O.
Gaskell, J. M. Mundy, E. M.
Gooch, E. S. Neeld, J.
Gore, M. Neeld, J.
Gore, W. O. Newport, Visct.
Gore, W. R. O. Newry, Visct.
Granby, Marq. of O'Brien, A. S.
Grogan, E. Ossulston, Lord
Hale, R. B. Packe, C. W.
Hall, Col. Pakington, Sir J.
Halsey, T. P. Powlett, Lord W.
Hamilton, J. H. Reid, Col.
Hamilton, G. A. Repton, G. W. J.
Hamilton, Lord C. Richards, R.
Hampden, R. Rolleston, Col.
Harris, hon. Capt. Ryder, hon. G. D.
Henley, J. W. Sanderson, R.
Hildyard, T. B. T. Scott, hon. F.
Hill, Lord E. Seymer, H. K.
Hodgson, R. Sheppard, T.
Hope, G. W. Sibthorp, Col.
Hudson, G. Smith, A.
Hussey, T. Stanley, E.
Ingestre, Visct. Stuart, J.
Inglis, Sir R. H. Thompson, Ald.
Jolliffe, Sir W. G. H. Thornhill, G.
Jones, Capt. Trevor, hon. G. R.
Ker, D. S. Trollope, Sir J.
Knight, F. W. Trotter, J.
Knightley, Sir C. Tyrell, Sir J. T.
Law, hon. C. E. Vesey, hon. T.
Lawson, A. Vyse, R. H. R. H.
Lefroy, A. Waddington, H. S.
Lindsay, hon. Capt. Walpole, S. H.
Long, W. Williams, T. P.
Lowther, Sir J. H. Wodehouse, E.
Lowther, hon. Col. TELLERS.
Lygon, hon. Gen. Beresford, Major
Mackenzie, T. Newdegate, C. N.
Paired off.
Acheson, Lord Copeland, Ald.
Baring, rt. hon. F. T. Baring, T.
Blake, Sir V. Emlyn, Visct.
Busfeild, W. Buck, L. W.
Bulkeley, Sir R. B. W. Walsh, Sir J. B.
Byng, G. O'Connell, D.
Cayley, E. S. Pakington, Sir J. S.
Dawson, hon. T. V. Coote, Sir C. H.
Duff, J. March, Earl of
Ellice, E., jun. Balfour, J. M.
Granger, T. C. Round, C. G.
Gregory, N. H. Leslie, C. P.
Heron, Sir R. Baillie, W.
Howard, hon. J. K. Gladstone, Capt
Howard, Capt. Hope, Sir J.
Hanmer, Sir J. Farnham, E. B.
Langton, Col. G. Kerrison, Sir E.
Loch, J. Ferrand, W. B.
Lyall, G. Round, J.
Matheson, J. Drummond, H. H.
M'Taggart, Sir J. Bentinck, Lord H.
Martin, C. W. Smyth, Sir H.
Milton, Visct. Bailey, J. J.
Morison, Gen. Bateson, T.
Molesworth, Sir W. Goring, C.
Rawdon, Col.
Rice, E. R. Barrington, Lord
Scott, R. Attwood, M.
Strickland, Sir G. Burrell, Sir C. M.
Stuart, T. V. Colvile, C. R.
Trelawny, J. S. Plumptre, J.
Vivian, hon. Capt. Chandos, Marq. of
Vivian, J. H. Powell, Col.
Walker, R. Rashleigh, W.
Watson, W. H. Marton, G.
White, Col. H. Cresswell, B.
Winnington, Sir T. E. Palmer, R.
Wrightson, W. B. Worcester, Marq. of

The Resolution was then agreed to, and the House adjourned at half-past One o'clock.