HC Deb 08 March 1848 vol 97 cc314-28

House in Committee on the Roman Catholic Relief Bill.


wished that the House should he put in possession of the instructions of Her Majesty's Government on the subject of the Bill.


would he prepared, as the Committee proceeded, to state in detail his views on the different provisions of the Bill. To the general opinion which he expressed some days ago on the measure, he still adhered. He did not think that it would remove any great practical grievances, for all such grievances had already been repealed by positive enactment, or were virtually abrogated. He admitted, however, that there were some obsolete penal enactments which it would be as well to remove at once from the Statute-book; and he might here observe that of this class there were two Irish Acts which he believed would not be touched by the Bill of the hon. and learned Member for Youghal. Perhaps it was an oversight, for no doubt it was not the hon. Member's intention that any favour should be extended to English Catholics in which Irish should not also participate.


explained that the reason why the Bill did not contain any allusion to the Acts in question was, that pursuant to a suggestion which fell from some Irish Members in the course of former debates, it was thought the more expedient course to leave to Irish lawyers the task of drawing up a Bill for the relief of Irish Catholics.


was sorry that there was not a more definite expression of the intentions of Government with respect to the Bill. He could not consent to give his vote for the whole of this Bill as it now stood. He had voted for the second reading after considerable hesitation, contrary to the opinion of a large body of his constituency; but he did so solely on the ground that when they came into Committee the objectionable portions of the Bill should be omitted, and if they were not he must vote against the Bill. Though he did not mean to say anything disrespectful of them, he thought that anything which would give facilities for the introduction of monastic orders into the country would prove injurious, as it would tend to create differences, and in many instances disturbances, which he should very much regret to see. In his mind the result of such a measure would be, that those parties, en- tertaining no doubt a sincere conviction of the truth of their own opinions, would endeavour to convert other persons to those opinions, and a contest would arise between those who were endeavouring to convert on the one side, and those who were endeavouring to resist on the other. It would also afford facilities for the introduction and continuance of the Jesuits in this country; and, without any desire to create unjust prejudices against persons belonging to that order, he could not shut his ears to the universal opinions of persons not only in this country, but in all the countries of Europe, with respect to the injurious effects that had arisen from their presence. Although he (Mr. Slaney) was most willing to join in removing any practical evils arising from obsolete statutes, he could not at the same time consent to make alterations which would give facilities for the introduction into the country of monastic orders, and thereby prove injurious to the peace of the community. Neither could he consent to a removal of the law with respect to the dedication of property to uses of this kind; and it was to him a matter of doubt whether any further dedication in the nature of mortmain would be advantageous to any religious community.

On Clause 1,


thought it would be better to postpone the words "hereinafter specified," which had reference to the Acts proposed to be repealed. The whole question between them depended upon whether any Act should be repealed or not; and if those words to which he had referred were included, and if they obtained the consent of the Committee to the three words in the clause, "shall be repealed," they would lead the House into an admission which he hoped the majority of the Committee would not be induced to adopt. There was, for instance, the Act 1st Elizabeth, which he apprehended was one of the Acts which the right hon. Gentleman the Secretary of State described as already substantially repealed by the Acts passed in the present reign. Now, if that Act was still in force, and if the Bill in his hand professed to do something more than had been already done, that something was this—that whereas, at present (he would assume for a moment the Act was not repealed) no Roman Catholic could publicly impugn the Queen's supremacy without incurring the penalty which the Act of Elizabeth imposed, this Bill, if adopted, would legalize such conduct on the part of Roman Catholics, but leave it merely obsolete with respect to Protestants in this very same thing. And although the offence of denying the Queen's supremacy, so far as that offence was created by this Act, was, by the Acts referred to, substantially repealed, it still remained an offence at common law. He would take the opinion of the House with respect to expunging the particular part of the clause to which he had referred, and would move the omission of the words, "shall be repealed," on the fifth line, page 2.


said he understood the hon. Gentleman the Member for Oxford to be of opinion that one of the Acts should be repealed; for he proposed to leave out the words "shall be repealed," which would render nugatory the whole of the Bill. If he could get a majority of the Committee to agree with him, it would be tantamount to an expression of opinion that the Bill, so far as this clause went, ought to be rejected. If he understood his hon. Friend rightly, he wished to raise the question whether these Acts should be repealed, and the House would decide that on argument; but the hon. Gentleman could not confine the discussion on these words to one of those Acts.

The Committee divided on the question that the words proposed to be left out stand part of the Clause:—Ayes 94; Noes 59: Majority 35.

List of the AYES.
Adair, R. A. S. Glyn, G. C.
Baines, M. T. Graham, rt. hn. Sir J.
Barrington, Visct. Greene, J.
Bellew, R. M. Greene, T.
Berkeley, hon. G. F. Gyey, rt. hon. Sir G.
Brockman, E. D. Henry, A.
Brotherton, J. Hervey, Lord A.
Carter, J. B. Heywood, J.
Clements, hon. C. S. Hodges, T. L.
Cobden, R. Jervis, Sir J.
Craig, W. G. Johnstone, Sir J.
Cubitt, W. Keating, R.
Divett, E. Kershaw, J.
Drumlanrig, Visct. King, hon. P. J. L.
Drummond, H. Macnamara, Major
Duncan, Visct. Meagher, T.
Dunne, F. P. Maitland, T.
East, Sir J. B. Martin, J.
Ebrington, Visct. Martin, C. W.
Evans, W. Milnes, R. M.
Ewart, W. Monsell, W.
Fagan, W. Morison, Gen.
Fitz Patrick, rt. hn. J. W. Mowatt, F.
Fordyce, A. D. Nugent, Sir P.
Fox, R. M. O'Brien, J.
Fox, W. J. O'Brien, Sir L.
Gardner, R. O'Brien, W. S.
Gibson, rt. hon, T. M. O'Flaherty, A.
Pendarves, E. W. W. Talbot, J. H.
Perfect, R. Tenison, E. K.
Pigott, F. Thompson, Col.
Pilkington, J. Thornely, T.
Power, N. Townshend, Capt.
Pusey, P. Trelawny, J. S.
Raphael, A. Tufnell, H.
Reynolds, J. Urquhart, D.
Russell, F. C. H. Vane, Lord H.
Sadleir, J. Villiers, hon. C.
Scully, F. Wakley, T.
Seely, C. Walmsley, Sir J.
Seymour, Lord Wawn, J. T.
Sheil, rt. hon. B. L. Williamson, Sir H.
Slaney, R. A. Wilson, M.
Somerville, rt. hn. Sir W. Wood, rt. hon. Sir C.
Stansfield, W. R. C. Yorke, H. G. R.
Strickland, Sir G. TELLERS.
Strutt, rt. hon. E. Anstey, T. C.
Sullivan, M. Arundel and Surrey.
Sutton, J. H. M. Earl of
List of the NOES.
Adderley, C. B. Halford, Sir H.
Alexander, N. Harris, hon. Capt.
Arbuthnott, hon. H. Heald, J.
Archdall, Capt. M. Henley, J. W.
Arkwright, G. Hildyard, R. C.
Baldock, E. H. Hood, Sir A.
Benbow, J. Hope, Sir J.
Blackstone, W. S. Jones, Sir W.
Brackley, Visct. Knox, Col.
Bremridge, R. Law, hon. C. E.
Brooke, Sir A. B. Lindsay, hon. Col.
Bruce, C. L. C. Long, W.
Buck, L. W. Lygon, bon. Gen.
Carew, W. H. P. Mahon, Visct.
Chaplin, W. J. Manners, Lord C. S.
Christy, S. Miles, P. W. S.
Clive, H. B. Mundy, E. M.
Codrington, Sir W. Plumptre, J. 1'.
Compton, H. C. Sandars, G.
Conolly, Col. Sibthorp, Col.
Deering, J. Smollett, A.
Dodd, G. Sotheron, T. H. S.
Duncombe, hon. O. Spooner, R.
Ffolliott, J. Stafford, A.
Frewen, C. H. Tollemache, J.
Fuller, A. E. Vyse, R. H. R. H.
Gore, W. R. O. Waddington, H. S.
Goring, C. Wellesley, Lord C.
Goulburn, rt. hon. H. TELLERS.
Greenall, G. Inglis, Sir R. H.
Gwyn, H. Newdegate, C. N.

then read the Clause.


moved the omission of that part of the clause which repealed the penalties of the Act of Elizabeth, beginning at the 17th line, down to the word "mainprise."


seconded the Amendment of the hon. Member for Oxfordshire. There could be no doubt, he thought, as had been admitted by Lord Lyndhurst in another place upon the passing of the 9th and 10th Victoria, that to impugn the pre-eminence of the Crown was an offence at common law. He did not see that any direct advantage would be gained by repealing the Statute of Elizabeth. The offence would not thereby be repealed. The penalties were already repealed; and he could not see the benefit of retaining words in this clause which should repeal that statute.


opposed the Amendment. If the offence still remained an offence at common law, he saw no reason for retaining the Act of Elizabeth.


wished to inquire, if the offence were an offence at common law, what the offence was?


said, to deny the pre-eminence of the Crown would be, he apprehended, treason at common law.


wished to know whether a person could be indicted at common law for the offence detailed in the terms of the 1st of Elizabeth?


said, he did not intend to state that the denial of the spiritual pre-eminence of the Crown was an offence at common law: he meant of course the temporal pre-eminence. According to very learned opinions the Act of the 1st Elizabeth created no offence at all, but merely imposed penalties for an offence already created. But the penalties being repealed, the Act containing no prohibition created no offence. That being so, the law would remain just the same whether that statute were repealed or not. His reason for voting for the retention of the words in the clause, was, that the Act which they sought to repeal created a doubt whether parties could proceed under the Act or not, and in fact contained a provision which could not be acted upon.


saw no reason for removing from the Statute-book any of the securities we had for the maintenance of the King's supremacy; and, therefore, the arguments of the Attorney General were inoperative with him to induce him to relax in his opposition to this clause, and he trusted the hon. Member for Oxfordshire would give the Committee an opportunity of dividing.


said, that the Attorney General had given no answer to the question, whether or no it was an offence at common law to deny the supremacy of the Crown. He, therefore, thought that the hon. Member for the University of Cambridge ought to reconsider the judgment he had come to, when the law officer of the Crown would not take on himself to affirm whether or no he was disposed to withdraw the statutable protection. He had always understood that this statute mainly declared what the common law meant to do; and when that was once done, there was considerable inconvenience in going hack again to the common law. He should certainly divide the House on the Amendment.


said, that the hon. Gentleman who had just sat down had not done justice to the Attorney General. The hon. and learned Gentleman the Member for Cambridge, who put his question, omitted to state in what sense he understood the word "supremacy," because no one would deny that the Sovereign had some supremacy at common law. The question only was as to the amount and nature of the supremacy. [Laughter.] Hon. Gentlemen who laughed would find that he was not wandering from the question. At common law the supremacy of the Sovereign was temporal; and ecclesiastical, sub modo. If by ecclesiastical you meant spiritual, and claimed a spiritual supremacy over persons not belonging to the Church of England, then he said that at common law it was no offence to deny that supremacy; but if it meant that the King at common law had supremacy in all matters ecclesiastical or civil, then to deny or question that supremacy was an offence at common law, and might amount to high treason. If a Roman Catholic bishop or priest, in pursuit of those advantages which the Toleration Act secured to him, should resort to any measures of a temporal nature for the purpose of enforcing those spiritual rights; then he might even be guilty of high treason; and the repeal of this clause would leave the common law in that respect unaltered. It appeared from a work of the Irish Lord Chancellor Bolton, that until the Ecclesiastical Supremacy Act was extended to Ireland by an Irish Act, such supremacy was not in force in Ireland, not even under the general authority of Poyning's Act, which secured to the English Legislature authority over Ireland; and to meet the difficulty the 2nd Elizabeth was passed. He might mention, also, that the Act against appeals to Rome in matters ecclesiastical had no force in Ireland until it was specially extended there.


If you repeal this Act, do you affect the common law? No. Therefore, are we not involving ourselves in a super-subtle discussion of what the common law is, when the common law is not affected whether we repeal the statute or not? The pains and penalties of the statute have been abrogated—the sting has been withdrawn. Then why keep it on the Statute-book? The question is, ought not a nugatory and offensive statute, which states a falsehood, to be repealed? I say that the Pope has spiritual authority in this kingdom; that is to say, the Pope has the appointment of Roman Catholic bishops, and I can give you a recent and high authority. Mr. Justice Coleridge, on a recent occasion, said, he thought the Pope the rightful head of the Christian world. I repeat it. I see an expression of wonder in the faces of hon. Gentlemen on the other side; but I say, at all events, before the Reformation. Those words are mine; they are not the words of Mr. Justice Coleridge; but they are words which are naturally elicited from the observation of the learned Judge, in reference to a system by which peace and tranquillity were preserved throughout the Christian world. If the Pope, before the Reformation, as rightful head of the Christian world, exercised spiritual authority, so now he has de facto exercised authority, as the bishops of Roman Catholics have been recognised in the Act of Parliament brought in by the right hon. Gentleman whom I see on the bench opposite (Sir James Graham). They have been put upon the Committee of Bequests, and they have been given precedence by that Act, as the words "Catholic Archbishop and Bishop" was introduced by the Committee, and purely upon my suggestion, for I pressed it upon the House. As these words—these technical expressions, which indicate the spiritual authority of the Pope—have been adopted, I say that the statute states what is not true. It states that the Pope has no spiritual authority—I say that he has.


I am extremely unwilling to obtrude at all on the attention of the Committee on such a subject; but an appeal has been made to me by the hon. Gentleman who has just sat down, which renders it impossible for me to give a silent vote. The hon. Gentleman says that under the Bequests Act precedence was given to Roman Catholic archbishops and bishops. I must dispute the precedences; but the recognition of those prelates by Act of Parliament con-not be denied. In reference to the point more immediately under consideration, I have a very painful recollection of the Act 9th and 10th Viet., from one particular circumstance, which was, that it brought me for the first, and I hope for the last, time of my life in a somewhat unfriendly collision with my hon. Friend the Member for the University of Oxford. He contended that the Bill, as introduced by the late Government, was a virtual repeal of the Act of Elizabeth, and that the supremacy itself was no longer in force by that statute. He said that would be the effect. I said it was a limited repeal, and would not produce the effect which the hon. Member for Oxford contended that it would. I have a very distinct recollection of all that occurred on the introduction of that Act. I am quite sure the whole question in reference to obsolete statutes affecting religious belief was referred to the Criminal Law Commissioners; and, if I mistake not, the Criminal Law Commission reported for the absolute repeal of the Clause of the 1st Elizabeth. Her Majesty's advisers, acting on the advice of the Commission, did deliberately consent to advise Her Majesty—going the whole length of the total repeal of the clause now under discussion—to adopt the advice of the Commission, and introduced the Bill. Lord Lyndhurst, occupying the highest post at the head of the law in this country, the first law adviser of Her Majesty, was high steward of the university of Cambridge. He saw no danger whatever in being a party to the repeal of this clause. He advised Her Majesty that such Bill would be brought forward by the Government, and he himself introduced it in the House of Lords. In the course of the discussion in this House, it was suggested that it might be possible to make the penalties no longer operative; and I consented to the introduction of the words of the 9th and 10th Vic, to which reference has been made by the Attorney General. The hon. Member for Dungarvon has said, and said truly, that the sting is withdrawn from the statute we are now discussing by the act of repeal. If the sting is withdrawn, the repeal of this clause may be said to be superfluous; but it does not change the law as it now stands. If the sting be not withdrawn, then I, for one, certainly think that in good faith and honour, having been a party to the original introduction of the Bill for the purpose of repealing the clause, I am bound to see it enforced. I will not stop there. I will go the whole length of saying, that if the common law, when the statutable provision shall have ceased to operate, be inoperative for the punishment of a party in this country for denying the spiritual supremacy of Her Majesty, in the wide sense in which I contend that spiritual supremacy is denied by Roman Catholics, I care not. I should be content that the common law should not create an offence which would affect the liberty of conscience of at least one-third part of Her Majesty's subjects. Certainly I am not alarmed at the effect of the repeal of this particular clause, or at leaving the common law inoperative in the matter. I see no occasion to insist on penalties to be directly inoperative by statute, or indirectly enforced by common law, which, if attempted to be enforced, would be inconsistent with the peace and happiness of the country. Something has been said as to the answer given by the Attorney General as to what offence the denial of the King's supremacy would be at common law. At his answer, in the first instance, I was certainly alarmed. To what extent may not this be pushed? Constructive treasons are a most dangerous doctrine. I know not whether the toast which at one time was given by the friends of the people, viz., "The Sovereignty of the People," might not, on the doctrine of the Attorney General, he termed treason at common law. I have the utmost horror of this doctrine. The hon. and learned Gentleman, on reflection, somewhat modified his opinion. It has been the great object of all constitutional writers to narrow the doctrine of treason. I cannot conceive that the assertion of the spiritual supremacy of the Pope should be constructive treason. I should regret to see that doctrine for one moment supported by the authority of the Attorney General. I have no hesitation whatever in voting for the repeal of this clause. I am indifferent whether at common law it should be an offence to acknowledge the supremacy of the Pope of Rome; and I certainly, on the whole, cannot for one moment hesitate in giving my cordial support to the clause as it originally stood.


said, that the right hon. Gentleman who had recently addressed the House had exhibited a glorious independence as regarded supremacy. Dieu et mon droit was the motto of the Crown; and he would merely add, that if the Catholics were aggrieved by the Act alluded to, he would not have the slightest objection to the removal of their grievances; but if not, he could not agree to the proposition that they were to be the only legal traitors in the country.


said, that the speech of the right hon. Baronet had afforded him great satisfaction. An hon. Member opposite (Mr. Drummond) had said, that if the Catholics laboured under any grievances, he had no objection to their removal. The Bill before them proposed to repeal the penalties against any one who believed that there existed any authority, spiritual or temporal, within the realm other than the Crown. Every Catholic bishop believed that such spiritual authority did exist; and he (the Earl of Arundel and Surrey) would therefore claim the vote of the hon. Gentleman, as he had stated that he would vote for the removal of any grievance from the Catholics.


was of opinion, that it was wrong to put words into any man's mouth when that individual was absent, and of course could not defend himself. A friend of his, a Judge, had been misquoted, and he hoped he was wrong in saying that the misquotation was not altogether from a defect of memory. Justice Coleridge had been described as having said that the supremacy of the Pope before the Reformation was of effect as of to-day. He (Sir R. H. Inglis) could not pay so bad a compliment to the right hon. Gentleman who had so spoken, as to say that he did not understand what he was stating; and if he had done any injustice to him, he apologised for having done so.


said, that while the hon. Member for Oxford expressed his commendable indignation at any allusion to the words of an absent man, he might have abstained from attributing sinister motives to others. He had no antipathy against the learned Judge—he had no individual motive in alluding to the statement of Mr. Justice Coleridge; on the contrary, he had quoted his dictum as a proof of the authority of the Pope under the common law of England, which of course existed before the Reformation, and as a proof that the Pope had been recognised as the head of the Christian world, at least before the Reformation. He must say, that the hon. Baronet, when he meant to give so flat a contradiction to his (Mr. Sheil's) statement respecting the observations of an eminent Judge, ought to have been prepared to show from the newspapers that he (Sir R. H. Inglis) was right in the view which he had taken of those observations.

The Committee divided. On the question that the words proposed to be left out, stand part of the Clause:—Ayes 151; Noes 119: Majority 32.

List of the AYES.
Adair, R. A. S. Jervis, Sir J.
Adair, Visct. Johnstone, Sir J.
Alcock, T. Keating, R.
Anson, Visct. Keogh, W.
Armstrong, Sir A. Keppel, hon. G. T.
Baines, M. T. Kershaw, J.
Baring, hon. W. B. King, hon. P. J. L.
Bell, J. Lawless, hon. C.
Bellew, R. M. Lemon, Sir C.
Berkeley, hon. H. F. Lewis, rt. hn. Sir T. F.
Berkeley, hon. G. F. Lewis, G. C.
Blackall, S. W. Lushington, C.
Blake, M. J. Macnamara, Major
Bowring, Dr. M'Gregor, J.
Brockman, E. D. Meagher, T.
Brotherton, J. Mahon, The O'Gorman
Bunbury, E. H. Mahon, Visct.
Burke, Sir T. J. Maitland, T.
Busfeild, W. Marshall, J. G.
Campbell, hon. W. F. Martin, J.
Carter, J. B. Martin, C. W.
Cayley, E. S. Melgund, Visct.
Clay, J. Mitchell, T. A.
Clements, hon. C. S. Monsell, W.
Cobden, R. Moore, G. H.
Cochrane, A. D. R. W. B. Mowatt, F.
Colebrooke, Sir T. E. Mulgrave, Earl of
Corbally, M. E. Nugent, Sir P.
Cowan, C. O'Brien, J.
Crawford, W. S. O'Brien, W. S.
Cubitt, W. O'Flaherty, A.
Dalrymple, Capt. Patten, J. W.
Damer, hon. Col. Pechell, Capt.
Dawson, hon. T. V. Perfect, R.
Divett, E. Pilkington, J.
Drumlanrig, Visct. Pinney, W.
Duncan, Visct. Power, Dr.
Duncan, Gr. Power, N.
Dunne, F. P. Pusey, P.
East, Sir J. B. Raphael, A.
Ebrington, Visct. Rawdon, Col.
Evans, W. Reynolds, J.
Ewart, W. Russell, F. C. H.
Fagan, W. Sadleir, J.
Fitzpatrick, rt. hn. J. W. Scholefield, W.
Fordyce, A. D. Scully, F.
Forster, M. Seymour, Lord
Fortescue, C. Shell, rt. hon. R. L.
Fortescue, hon. J. W. Shelburne, Earl of
Fox, R. M. Simeon, J.
Fox, W. J. Slaney, B. A.
Gardner, R. Someryille, rt. hn. Sir W.
Gladstone, rt. hn. W. E. Stansfield, W. R. C.
Glyn, G. C. Strickland, Sir G.
Goulburn, rt. hon. H. Strutt, rt. hon. E.
Graham, rt. hon. Sir J. Stuart, Lord D.
Greene, J. Stuart, Lord J.
Greene, T. Sullivan, M.
Grey, rt. hon. Sir G. Sutton, J. H. M.
Grosvenor, Lord R. Talbot, J. H.
Haggitt, F. R. Tenison, E. K.
Henry, A. Tennent, R. J.
Hervey, Lord A. Thicknesse, R. A.
Heywood, J. Thompson, Col.
Hodges, T. L. Thornely, T.
Hope, A. Towneley, J.
Hughes, W. B. Townshend, Capt.
Trelawny, J. S. Westhead, J. P.
Tufnell, H. Williamson, Sir H.
Turner, E. Wilson, M.
Tynte, Col. C. J. K. Wood, rt. hon. Sir C.
Urquhart, D. Wood, W. P.
Vane, Lord H. Wyvill, M.
Wakley, T.
Wall, C. B. TEILERS.
Walmsley, Sir J. Anstey, T. C.
Watkins, Col. L. Arundel and Surrey, Earl of
Wawn, J. T.
List of the NOES.
Adderley, C. B. Harris, hon. Capt.
Alexander, N. Heald, J.
Arbuthnott, hon. H. Heathcote, Sir W.
Arkwright, G. Heneage, E.
Bagge, W. Herries, rt. hon. J. C.
Bailey, J. Hildyard, R. C.
Baldock, E. H. Hildyard, T. B. T.
Barrington, Visct. Hood, Sir A.
Benbow, J. Hope, Sir. J.
Bennet, P. Hotham, Lord
Beresford, W. Hudson, G.
Blackstone, W. S. Inglis, Sir R. H.
Boldero, H. G. Ireland, T. J.
Bolling, W. Jolliffe, Sir W. G. H.
Bowles, Adm. Jones, Sir W.
Brackley, Visct. Jones, Capt.
Bremridge, R. Knox, Col.
Brooke, Lord Lindsay, hon. Col.
Brooke, Sir A. B. Long, W.
Bruce, Lord E. Lowther, H.
Bruce, C. L. C. Lygon, hon. Gen.
Buck, L. W. Mackenzie, W. V.
Buller, Sir J. Y. M'Naghten, Sir E.
Bunbury, W. M. Manners, Lord C. S.
Burghley, Lord March, Earl of
Carew, W. H. P. Maxwell, hon. J. P.
Chaplin, W. J. Meux, Sir H.
Chichester, Lord J. L. Miles, P. W. S.
Cholmeley, Sir M. Moody, C. A.
Christopher, R. A. Mundy, E. M.
Christy, S. Neeld, J.
Cobbold, J. C. Newdegate, C. N.
Cocks, T. S. Palmer, R.
Codrington, Sir W. Pigott, F.
Cole, hon. H. A. Plumptre, T. P.
Colvile, C. R. Plowden, W. H. C.
Compton, H. C. Prime, R.
Conolly, Col. Repton, G. W. J.
Cotton, hon. W. H. S. Rushout, Capt.
Deedes, W. Sandars, G.
Deering, J. Seymer, H. K.
Dod, J. W. Shirley, E. J.
Drummond, H. Sibthorp, Col.
Duckworth, Sir J. T. B. Smollett, A.
Duncombe, hon. O. Spooner, R.
Du Pre, C. G. Stafford, A.
Farrer, J. Stanley, E.
Ffolliott, J. Stuart, H.
Filmer, Sir E. Stuart, J.
Forbes, W. Taylor, T. E.
Fox, S. W. L. Thornhill, G.
Frewen, C. H. Trollope, Sir J.
Fuller, A. E. Vyse, R. H. R. H.
Gooch, E. S. Waddington, D.
Gordon, Adm. Waddington, H. S.
Gore, W. R. O. Willoughby, Sir H.
Goring, C. Yorke, hon. E. T.
Grenall, G.
Hale, R. B. Law, hon. C. E.
Halford, Sir H. Henley, J. W.

A discussion ensued on some verbal amendments, in the course of which.


said: Sir, I regret to be obliged to recall the attention of the Committee to a matter personal to myself. The hon. Baronet the Member for Oxford has stated in language unlike the usual character of his expressions, and with a manner characterised by anything but that gentlemanly deportment—I was going to add, which is his wont—the hon. Baronet has stated that I was guilty of misrepretation, and that, not from any defect of memory. He has stated this in language which, were it employed by any other person, I should have considered as justifying me in a demand for explanation. He has, in fact, without a shadow of provocation on my part, imputed to me wilful falsehood. Upon that charge having been made, I intimated in the most good-humoured way to the hon. Baronet that I should leave the House for the purpose of extracting the exact words used by Mr. Justice Coleridge. Now the words used were, that "the Pope was the rightful head of the Christian Church," without the words which I stated as having been added by myself. It will be in the recollection of hon. Gentlemen opposite that I used the words "at all events before the Reformation." ["No, no!"] I appeal to the right hon. Gentleman the Member for the University of Oxford (Mr. Gladstone), whom I see in his place, if I did not do so? [Mr. GLADSTONE: Yes, certainly.] The right hon. Gentleman says I did. Now these are the exact words used by Mr. Justice Coleridge—" If the Pope bad been content with his power of patriarch, he might have retained his appellate jurisdiction, which rightly belonged to him as the universal head of the whole Christian Church." If different inferences and interpretations may be drawn from these words, which may be the expression of a state of facts before the Reformation, I appeal to the hon. Baronet (Sir R. Inglis) himself, if, under these circumstances, he thinks himself justified in imputing to me that which amounts to a great moral offence?


I do not know whether the right hon. Gentleman has dealt wisely or unwisely in reviving the discussion upon this subject. I made no charge of falsehood against the right hon. Gentleman. But if I did, I hope that, without the terror with which the right hon. Gentleman's speech is charged, I, as a gentleman, and I hope as a Christian gentleman, should be ready and willing to apologise. The right hon. Gentleman knows well enough—at least, I hope that he does—that whilst it is not my habit or wish ever to give offence, it is not consistent with my principles to give the satisfaction which he seems to require. I will not revive the discussion so far as to consider whether or not the quotation which the right hon. Gentleman has now read to the House, bears the interpretation which he originally placed upon it. But I will say that the pause which the right hon. Gentleman made—the pause which he made in quoting Mr. Justice Coleridge's words—was sufficiently long for one to arrive at a very different conclusion from that of the right hon. Gentleman. But I can take an exception at once to the right hon. Gentleman quoting the authority of a judge from a newspaper. The right hon. Gentleman is a lawyer himself, and must know that the opinions of judges are to be taken from what are called the Reports; and I will venture to say that there is no judge, not even a coroner—I will venture to say that not one of them would have his law and bon mots taken on the authority of the Times, Chronicle, Herald, or Post. I apprehend, with respect to the Judges, that their opinions are to be taken from "Adolphus and Ellis," and from the regular Reports; and I will now tell the right hon. Gentleman that it is because he attacked the Judge—not merely because he attacked an absent man, and him my friend—that I was induced to rise. I consider that it is not safe, in this country particularly, that the character of a judge should be assailed. [Mr. SHEIL: I did not assail him.] Oh, no! On the contrary, the right hon. Gentleman meant it to be a compliment! I am quite ready to admit that—I am ready to admit that the right hon. Gentleman's object was not to attack Mr. Justice Coleridge, but rather to give him credit for a much nearer approach to the religious opinions which the right hon. Gentleman himself holds than is actually the case. But I must repeat that the opinions of a judge ought to be taken from the legal Reports; and as long as I have a seat in this House—anxious as I may be at all times to defend a friend, and willing as I may be to defend an absent man, when these two qualities are combined in one man, and that man a Judge—I shall feel it to be my duty to rise on his behalf. The right hon. Gentleman said that I meant to accuse him of falsehood. But, even if I had the fear of that alternative before me to which he has alluded in his speech, I should be neither more nor less willing than I am now, in the absence of such terror, to state, bonâ fide, that I did not mean to impute falsehood to the right hon. Gentleman. I do say, that by pausing as he did, he led the whole Committee to draw a conclusion which I believe would have been inconsistent with the fact; and therefore I felt it to be my duty to rise and make the statement which I addressed to the House. Is the right hon. Gentleman satisfied now?


remarked, he had listened to all the hon. Baronet had said, and attributed to him no intentional misrepresentation; but he certainly understood the hon. Baronet to accuse his right hon. Friend of wilfully misrepresenting that which he quoted.


I am sure the House will feel I had reason to complain of what passed. I yielded at once to the sense of the House, and in the interval I procured the exact words used by Mr. Justice Coleridge. This I say, if I were guilty of any misrepresentation, it was not wilful.

After some further discussion,


moved, that the Chairman report progress, and ask leave to sit again.

The Committee divided:—Ayes 124; Noes 175: Majority 51.

List of the AYES.
Adderley, C. B. Cobbold, J. C.
Alexander, N. Cocks, T. S.
Archdall, Capt. M. Codrington, Sir W.
Arkwright, G. Cole, hon. H. A.
Bagge, W. Coles, H. B.
Bailey, J. Colvile, C. R.
Baldock, E. H. Compton, H. C.
Bankes, G. Conolly, Col.
Beckett, W. Cotton, hon. W. H. S.
Bennet, P. Deedes, W.
Beresford, W. Deering, J.
Blackstone, W. S. Dod, J. W.
Boldero, H. G. Dodd, G.
Brackley, Visct. Duckworth, Sir J. T. B.
Bremridge, R. Duncombe, hon. O.
Briscoe, M. Dundas, G.
Broadley, H. Du Pre, C. G.
Brooke, Lord Farrer, J.
Brooke, Sir A. B. Ffolliott, J.
Bruce, C. L. C. Filmer, Sir E.
Buck, L. W. Forbes, W.
Buller, Sir J. Y. Fox, S. W. L.
Bunbury, W. M. Frewen, C. H.
Burghley, Lord Fuller, A. E.
Cabbell, B. B. Gooch, E. S.
Carew, W. H. P. Gore, W. R. O.
Chaplin, W. J. Goring, C.
Chichester, Lord J. L. Granby, Marq. of
Christy, S. Greenall, G.
Clive, H. B. Gwyn, H.
Hamilton, G. A. Ossulston, Lord
Harris, hon. Capt. Palmer, R.
Heald, J. Pennant, hon. Col.
Herries, rt. hon. J. C. Plumptre, J. P.
Hildyard, R. C. Powell, Col.
Hildyard, T. B. T. Prime, R.
Hill, Lord E. Repton, G. W. J.
Hood, Sir A. Richards, R.
Hope, Sir J. Rushout, Capt.
Hornby, J. Sandars, G.
Hotham, Lord Shirley, E. J.
Hudson, G. Sibthorp, Col.
Inglis, Sir R. H. Smollett, A.
Ireland, T. J. Sotheron, T. H. S.
Jolliffe, Sir W. G. H. Stafford, A.
Jones, Capt. Stanley, E.
Lascelles, hon. E. Stuart, J.
Lindsay, hon. Col. Sturt, H. G.
Lockhart, W. Thornhill, G.
Long, W. Tollemache, J.
Lowther, H. Turner, G. J.
Mackenzie, W. F. Tyrell, Sir J. T.
Manners, Lord C. S. Vyvyan, Sir R. R.
March, Earl of Vyse, R. H. R. H.
Maxwell, hon. J. P. Waddington, H. S.
Meux, Sir H. Walsh, Sir J. B.
Miles, P. W. S. West, F. E.
Miles, W. Willoughby, Sir H.
Moody, C. A. Wortley, rt. hon. J. S.
Mundy, E. M. Yorke, hon. E. T.
Neeld, J.
Neeld, J. TELLERS.
Newdegate, C. N. Law, hon. C. E.
O'Brien, Sir L. Spooner, R.
List of the NOES.
Adair, H. E. Cubitt, W.
Adair, R. A. S. Dalrymple, Capt.
Adare, Visct. Damer, hon. Col.
Alcock, T. Dawson, hon. T. V.
Armstrong, Sir A. Divett, E.
Arundel and Surrey, Earl of Drumlanrig, Visct.
Drummond, H.
Baines, M. T. Duff, G. S.
Barkly, H. Duncan, G.
Barrington, Visct. Dunne, F. P.
Bellew, R. M. East, Sir J. B.
Benbow, J. Ellice, E.
Berkeley, hon. H. F. Evans, Sir De L.
Blake, M. J. Evans, W.
Bowles, Adm. Ewart, W.
Bowring, Dr. Fagan, W.
Bright, J. Fitzpatrick, rt. hon. J. W.
Brockman, E. D. Fordyce, A. D.
Brotherton, J. Forster, M.
Bruce, Lord E. Fortescue, C.
Buller, C. Fortescue, hon. J. W.
Bunbury, E. H. Fox, R. M.
Burke, Sir T. J. Fox, W. J.
Busfeild, W. Gardner, R.
Campbell, hon. W. F. Gibson, rt. hon. T. M.
Carter, J. B. Gladstone, rt. hon. W. E.
Cavendish, hon. G. H. Glyn, G. C.
Cayley, E. S. Goulburn, rt. hon. H.
Childers, J. W. Graham, rt. hon. Sir, J.
Clay, J. Greene, J.
Clay, Sir W. Greene, T.
Clifford, H. M. Grenfell, G. P.
Coke, hon. E. K. Haggitt, F. R.
Corbally, M. E. Hall, Sir B.
Courtenay, Lord Headlam, T. E.
Crawford, W. S. Heneage, G. H. W.
Henry, A. Pinney, W.
Hervey, Lord A. Power, Dr.
Hey wood, J. Power, N.
Hodges, T. L. Pusey, P.
Hope, A. Raphael, A.
Howard, hon. C. W. G. Rawdon, Col.
Howard, hon. E. G. G. Reynolds, T.
Hughes, W. B. Ricardo, J. L.
Hume, J. Robartes, T. J. A.
Hutt, W. Romilly, J.
Jervis, Sir J. Russell, F. C. H.
Johnstone, Sir J. Sadleir, J.
Keating, R. Scholefield, W.
Keogh, W. Scully, F.
Keppel, hon. G. T. Seymer, H. K.
Ker, R. Sheil, rt. hon. E. L.
Kershaw, J. Simeon, J.
Lacelles, hon. W. S. Slaney, R. A.
Lemon, Sir C. Smith, J. B.
Lennard, T. B. Somers, J. P.
Lewis, rt. hon. Sir T. F. Somerville, rt. hn. Sir W.
Littleton, hon. E. R. Stansfield, W. R. C.
Lushington, C. Strickland, Sir G.
Lygon, hon. Gen. Stuart, Lord D.
Macnamara, Major Stuart, Lord J.
Meagher, T. Sullivan, M.
Mahon, The O'Gorman Sutton, J. H. M.
Mahon, Visct. Talbot, J. H.
Maitland, T. Tenison, E. K.
Marshall, J. G. Tennent, R. J.
Marshall, W. Thicknesse, R. A.
Martin, J. Thompson, Col.
Martin, C. W. Thornely, T.
Matheson, A. Towneley, J.
Melgund, Visct. Townshend, Capt.
Mitchell, T. A. Trelawny, J. S.
Moffatt, G. Trevor, hon. G. R.
Molesworth, Sir W. Turner, E.
Monsell, W. Urquhart, D.
Morpeth, Visct. Vane, Lord H.
Mowatt, F. Vesey, hon. T.
Mulgrave, Earl of Walmsley, Sir J.
Muntz, G. F. Watkins, Col. L.
Nugent, Sir P. Wawn, J. T.
O'Brien, J. Wellesley, Lord C.
O'Connell, M. J. Wilson, J.
O'Flaherty, A. Wilson, M.
Patten, J. W. Wood, rt. hon. Sir C.
Pechell, Capt. Wood, W. P.
Peel, Col. Wyvill, M.
Perfect, R.
Philips, Sir G. R. TELLEES.
Pigott, F. Anstey, T. C.
Pilkington, J. O'Brien, W. S.

moved that Mr. Bernal leave the chair.

Some further discussion ensued, and no progress having been made with the Bill, the House resumed.


reported progress, and obtained leave to sit again.

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