HC Deb 15 July 1862 vol 168 c351

said, he wished to put a question to the right hon. Gentleman the Secretary for Ireland in reference to a matter which had created considerable excitement amongst the Protestants of the sister country. It appeared that placards had been posted up throughout the city of Dublin announcing that certain proceedings were to take place on Sunday next, on the occasion of laying the first stone of the Roman Catholic University of Ireland. The programme set forth the fact that a procession was to take place through the public streets, and that places were assigned in it to Members of both Houses of Parliament. It was further stated that the procession was to be preceded by banners and bands, the character of which might be readily imagined. It went on to announce that the Roman Catholic Archbishops and Bishops of Ireland would appear on the occasion in their full canonicals. Now, he apprehended that the appearance of Roman Catholic ecclesiastics, under such circumstances, in their full canonicals, would be a violation of the law of the land, and was calculated to give great offence to Protestants. He wished therefore to ask the right hon. Baronet, Whether the authorities have taken, or intend to take, any steps to prevent such proceedings as are announced in the programme; or, in the event of the procession taking place in the manner announced in the programme, it is the intention of Her Majesty's Government to prosecute the Roman Catholic ecclesiastics for thus appearing in the public streets in their canonicals?


said, his attention had been drawn to the matter, and he had been in communication with the Department in Dublin in reference to it. He was not aware that any breach of the peace was anticipated, but the Government would be of course prepared to see that the law was respected by all parties.