HC Deb 02 June 1863 vol 171 cc251-61

rose to move that this House immediately resolve itself into a Committee to consider the Act 8 & 9 Vict., for the Endowment of the College of Maynooth, with a view to the repeal of the same, due regard being had to vested rights and interests. The hon. Member, having presented thirty-seven Petitions, signed by 50,000 persons, for the repeal of the Maynooth College Act, proceeded to say that the large number of Petitions he had presented was his justification for bringing the subject once more under the attention of the House. The purport of those Petitions was that every year had more strongly confirmed the conviction of the Petitioners of the inexpediency, in the first place, of the grant to Maynooth; and secondly, the inexpediency of its withdrawal by the Act of 1845 from the control of the House of Commons. The subject had been continuously before the House for the last seven years; and as the hon. Member for North Warwickshire (Mr. Spooner) had frequently submitted it to their attention, and ably shown the results of this institution on the religious and civil liberty of the country, the task he had to perform on the present occasion was comparatively easy. Instead of being obliged to solicit the attention of the House to possible future dangers, to doctrines in books or abstract teachings, he was enabled to show the practical results of the teaching at Maynooth, which, he thought, amply justified him in bringing forward the question. In the present Session the leaders of both parties in the State had vied with each other in cordially and completely ratifying an alliance with the priest party who were trained and educated at Maynooth. This, and other circumstances, fully warranted them in asking what that party was. The Chief Secretary for Ireland, on the last occasion when this subject was brought before the House, admitted that Maynooth was an experiment, and that it had been an ignominious failure. But another right hon. Gentleman on the Treasury bench declared that Maynooth was not only an ignominious failure, but that it would be a thorn in the side of England so long as it was allowed to continue. Though the grant to Maynooth out of the public purse was only £30,000 a year, it resulted in a drain upon the public purse to the extent of £400,000 a year. The unfortunate in- fluence of the teaching given at Maynooth made itself felt in a variety of ways. They had found, within the past year, the social and political disorder which had for so many years prevailed in Ireland extended to this country. The House should remember the riots which had recently occurred in Hyde Park and at Birkenhead, and the disloyal demonstrations which had accompanied the attempt to celebrate the marriage of the Prince of Wales in certain Irish towns on the 10th March last. Would any one attempt to deny that these riots were the result of organization; that Cardinal Wiseman had made himself a party to the demonstration in Hyde Park by passing through the park at the time it was going on—would any one deny that the rioters were organized and paid by the Roman Catholic priests, and that the priests paid the penalties imposed on the convicted rioters? In the same way, did any one doubt that the disturbances at Birkenhead were organized by the priests? Looking to the feeling in the country, he asked, whether it was not the duty of the Government to make some inquiry as to that organization. Government, however, made no such inquiry, but they shut the gates of Hyde Park and prevented meetings being held there, thus depriving the people of the right they had exercised for many years, and in every town in the kingdom freedom of debate was prohibited, lest it might be offensive to the Roman Catholic priests; and the Lord Mayor, acting under the same influence, had refused the use of the Guildhall for a meeting. On one occasion he was fortunate enough to bring the Secretary for Ireland on his legs in answer to a question as to the Prince of Wales being burned in effigy in Ireland, under the direct encouragement of the priests; and the right hon. Gentleman treated the matter as if it was not of the slightest consequence, and said that he had himself been burned in effigy on one occasion. He ventured then to tell the right, hon. Gentleman, and he now repeated, that these indications of the tendency to political and social disorders which had ravaged and continued to ravage Ireland were but the natural result of those doctrines which the hon. Member for North Warwickshire (Mr. Spooner) had year after year been endeavouring to force upon the attention of the House as the doetrines taught at Maynooth. From the day when the canon law was introduced into this country in 1851 (when the country was roused and then went to sleep again on the assurance of the Government that the matter should be taken care of)—from that time agents had been engaged collecting evidence showing that the Ribbon Societies in Ireland were the source of the agrarian disturbances in that country, and that they were essentially the organized courts of the Roman Catholic priesthood, to give effect to the canon law. The hon. Member for North Warwickshire, when he brought forward his Motions on this subject, always asked the House to withdraw the grant. He (Mr. Whalley) did not, on this occasion, ask the House to come to any conclusion that the teaching at Maynooth was disloyal, or that it was the source of those troubles in England or in Ireland. He merely called attention to these circumstances, as he might also do to the recent Reports of Sir George Grey from New Zealand, that wherever he went he found that the Roman Catholic priests were at the bottom of the rebellion of the Maories; or to the reports which he received every week from Canada and Newfoundland to the same effect. He did not ask for any decision of that kind at the present time. All he now asked was that the exceptional nature of this grant, which by an Act of Parliament was removed from the control of that House, should no longer continue. On a former occasion he showed that the practical effect of taking the grant out of the control of the House was that the teaching at Maynooth, which was formerly Gallican, had become Jesuitical. He was desirous, after the Motion of last year, to enable himself to bring before the House the practical working of this system, as shown in the conduct of those priests of Rome who had matriculated at Maynooth; and he moved for a Return of the priests who had been educated at Maynooth, and where they were ministering. Of course, his object in making that Motion was obvious, because it was well known that Maynooth was no longer the college for Ireland, but for every part of the British Empire. The House acceded to that Motion; but would it be credited, that on an order emanating from Maynooth, Her Majesty's Government came down to the House and rescinded the order, and thus he was unable to trace these priests to various parts of the world. This grant was withdrawn from the control of the House in order to prevent the expression of the strong religious feeling which was expressed in the Petitions he had presented, and in order to prevent the grant being the subject of discussion. This was an additional wrong to the people of this country, and an outrage to the Constitution. The grant ought to be placed under the annual control of Parliament, so that the College of Maynooth might have an opportunity of defending itself; and if it could be shown that the books used there did not contain the principles which he had read in them, none would be more benefited than the Irish Members, and none more gratified than himself. There were circumstances which might justify a grant being made permanent, but in that case there should be a general concurrence of opinion on the subject. But there was no such concurrence with respect to the Maynooth grant, and it was for the express purpose of putting down discussion that the grant was made permanent. Last Session they had the fact admitted by the Chief Secretary for Ireland that the grant was an experiment, and that it had proved a failure; and it was acknowledged by the Chancellor of the Exchequer that it was a thorn in the side of this country. In the year 1829, when the Catholic Emancipation Act was passed, it was thought necessary to protect this country against the incursions of the Jesuits by expressly providing that no Jesuits should be allowed in this country. But it was a fact that Maynooth was become, to all intents and purposes, a Jesuit College; that nunneries had increased from 50 to 200; that chapels had been increased by some hundreds, and that the Jesuits received a considerable portion of the money which was intended to go to the support of the Church of England. When they found that the Government did not put in force the Act of 1829, that nothing was done to enforce the Ecclesiastical Titles Bill, he thought if ever there was a case when the House might, without acceding to the statements of a person who, like himself, might be considered over-zealous, take the matter into its own hands, this was the case. That was the object of his Motion. Whether the House might be disposed at a future time, the statements he bad made being fully substantiated, to withdraw the grant, was entirely another question; but he respectfully submitted that on the statement of the Secretary for Ireland the experiment of continuing the Maynooth grant by Act of Parliament had failed, and in the fact that Maynooth had thereby been converted into a Jesuit college be had shown sufficient reason for the Motion he had brought forward. [The Speech of the hon. Gentleman had been listened to with great impatience, and when he sat down, there were loud cries for a division.]


seconded the Motion.

Motion made, and Question proposed, That this House will immediately resolve itself into a Committee to consider the Act 8 & 9 Vict., for the Endowment of the College of Maynooth, with a view to the repeal of the same, due regard being had to vested rights and interests.


rose to address the House, but theories of "Divide!" "Divide!" rendered his speech almost inaudible. The hon. Member was understood to say that he had given notice of an Amendment to the Motion of the hon. Member for Peterborough. He did not, however, propose to bring it forward upon the present occasion. He would, at some future time, bring it forward as a substantive Motion. Seeing that the Roman Catholics of Ireland received only 1¼d. per head of State aid, while the Presbyterians received 1s. 7d., and the members of the Established Church nearly £1, he thought it would be most unjust to withdraw this 1¼d. from the Roman Catholics by repealing the Act for endowing Maynooth.


, who also rose amid loud cries for a division, said, the House is impatient for a division, and I will not detain it except for a very few minutes. The hon. Gentleman who made this Motion has paid a just compliment to my hon. Friend opposite the Member for North Warwickshire (Mr. Spooner), for the pertinacity with which he has argued this subject, and which left him an easy task to perform. Certainly, in performing that task, the hon. Gentleman went into a number of matters not connected with his Motion, for he not only alluded to the riots at Birkenhead and Hyde Park, but to the refusal of the Lord Mayor to lend the Guildhall for a public meeting. He said that this is the only grant which is removed from the observation of Parliament, and he wishes to repeal the Act of 1845. This, however, is not the only money-grant for educational purposes which is thrown upon the Consolidated Fund, because there is paid out of the Consolidated Fund a grant of £22,000 a year for the Established Church of Scotland, which never comes in the annual Votes of Parliament. ["Divide, divide!"] I will be very short. The hon. Gentleman has alluded to some remarks made by the Chancellor of the Exchequer and myself respecting the failure of this institution. Whether it is a failure or not I am not in a position to judge, but I think it would be very unfair to withdraw a grant that was made for the spiritual care of a great number of our fellow-countrymen. The hon. Member said, repeating a remark that he made last year, that the Ribbon societies in Ireland were representatives of the Canon Law of Rome. What he means by that observation I know not, but nothing can be more absurd than such an expression.


I rise to order. ["Order!"]


The hon. Gentleman will have an opportunity of answering me next year.


Sir, I rise to order. I submit that the right hon. Gentleman is out of order in misrepresenting a speaker's words.


The hon. Gentleman will have an opportunity of reply.


I did not use the words imputed to me.


I wrote them down, and I do not think I misrepresented him. The hon. Gentleman says that the Roman Catholic priests are intolerant. Whether they are intolerant I know not—I do not believe they are. But as members of the Established Church of England and Ireland, and with another Established Church in Scotland, and contributing, as we do, to the maintenance of other sects, like the Presbyterians in the North of Ire-and, I think it would be intolerant in us if we should endeavour to preclude our Roman Catholic fellow-countrymen from the opportunities of religious instruction and spiritual knowledge which they derive from the efficient maintenance of the establishment of Maynooth. I speak the views of the Government when I say that we must oppose the Motion of the hon. Gentleman the Member for Peterborough. ["Divide, divide!"]


said, he was sorry to see a renewal of the attempts which had been made on previous occasions to stifle all discussion of this subject, which attempts were similar to those made recently throughout the country to stifle discussions on subjects analogous to that now before the House. He thought it was disrepectful to the people of this country to vote away their money in silence, enforced by a system of opposition to free discussion. The hon. Member for Edinburgh, and the right hon. Baronet the Chief Secretary for Ireland, had spoken of the grants to the different religious denominations as if they regarded Roman Catholicism, the Established Church, and Presbyterianism, as only so many forms of superstition, one more absurd than another. This was not a rational way of looking at the question. To take the lowest view, a desire for religion was a positive appetite of the human mind; and it was incumbent on the Government to take care that the doctrines it assisted to disseminate were not such as were inimical to the true interests of mankind. He wished for a moment to call the attention of the House to the position in which this country stood among the nations of the earth. It was perfectly obvious that Maynooth had become what it was predicted early in the century by Lord Chancellor Redesdale it would become—a monastic institution. If they turned to Roman Catholic countries, they would find that the people and Government of Spain, France, and Italy had found it necessary to reduce and suppress such institutions; surely, then, it was very absurd that this Protestant country should pay for maintaining and extending them. It was only right that the House should be made acquainted with the views taken by persons of extreme Ultramontane opinions with regard to the effect of this grant upon the Roman Catholic population in Ireland. At a dinner at Liverpool the other day, at which a person who claimed to be the Roman Catholic bishop of the district presided, the health of the Pope was given before that of Her Majesty, and then the Rev. Mr. Wilberforce delivered an address, in which he said— After a period of 300 years they had seen that the Anglican religion had failed to spread itself in the extended empire which had been given to the English. It was as a sickly exotic, fortified, as it had been, by grants from the British Parliament, taken from the money raised from Catholics as well as Protestants. The Catholic religion, on the contrary, had taken deep root, and was overshadowing the land until it had become, not the sole religion, but the prevalent religion, and was dominant in Australia, the United States, and Canada. As other religions were dying out, the Catholic religion was spreading and taking root. All this was owing first of all to the providence of God, but the great instrument had been the Irish nation. Speaking of the progress which Catholicism had made in that town (Liverpool), he said— That fifty or sixty years ago some of their congregations numbered only thirty or forty persons, but the question was whether there were not 150,000 Catholics in Liverpool at the present time. The Catholic religion had risen to its present state not by the help of any political party or any particular public man. Public men had flattered them alike, not from any love to their religion, but because they saw the Catholics were getting strong enough to be useful to them, and so they 'sought their help.' That was a very significant declaration from a highly-educated and influential gentleman, the editor of The Weekly Register. It amounted to this, that Rome considered the Irish people as the great agents for the extension of her dominion, while the Parliament of England were asked to furnish the means for educating the Catholic priesthood in the Ultramontane doctrines of the Church of Rome, that they might become the directors of this agency. When the grant was first made, the Church of Rome was in a very different position. At that time the Pope had suppressed the Jesuits, and Rome had receded from the principles of aggression into which she had been driven by the Jesuits at the commencement of the seventeenth century: the Roman Catholic Church was endeavouring to become, in the Catholic countries of the world, a local and national Church. When Mr. Pitt saw the Roman Catholic hierarchy and priesthood endeavouring to nationalize themselves, and found them threatened by the revolutionists, he stepped forward to aid the efforts of the Irish Roman Catholics to furnish themselves with a priesthood educated in their own country and animated by all those national feelings which were likely to spring from an establishment instituted under such circumstances. But the circumstances now were totally changed. The Jesuits had been re-organized, and at this moment it was notorious that the Court of Rome was under the influence of the Jesuit party. There was ample evidence that the action of that party was scarcely religious, so essentially political had it become. Its organization was opposed to free institutions, and sought the establishment of despotism; in corroboration of this we had recently seen in the United States the Roman Catholic Archbishop Hughes preaching a war of extermination against the Southern States, and treating Ireland as though it was his legitimate recruiting ground. There was now no plea of poverty upon which to justify the grant to Maynooth. Only the year before last Cardinal Wiseman congratulated the Roman Catholics of England upon the evidences of the wealth of their Church and upon the ex-tension of their religions and monastic establishments. Legate Cullen had written in the same sense with respect to Ireland; therefore the people of this country were only reasonable when they asked that Parliament should resume its control of the expenditure for Maynooth, in order that the public money might not be made accessory to purposes which were opposed to the national character and laws, and were dangerous to the institutions of the country.


, in reply, complained that the right hon. Baronet the Chief Secretary for Ireland had put words into his mouth which were mere nonsense. What he had really said was, that the Ribbon and other secret societies, which changed their names as the chameleon changed its skin, could not be better described than as agencies whereby the Roman Catholic priests carried into effect the canon law of Rome. The only object he had in view was to bring the grant within the control of the House of Commons, whatever might be the amount they chose to devote to the purpose.

Question put.

The House divided:—Ayes 100; Noes 198: Majority 98.

Adderley, rt. hon. C. B. Ewing, H. E. Crum-
Arbuthnott, hon. Gen. Fellowes, E.
Ayrton, A. S. Filmer, Sir E.
Aytoun, R. S. Finlay, A. S.
Baines, E. Galway, Viscount
Beach, W. W. B. Gard, R. S.
Bentinck, G. W. P. Getty, S. G.
Benyon, R. Gore, J. R. O.
Beresford, rt. hon. W. Griffith, C. D.
Blackburn, P. Hadfield, G.
Bouverie, rt. hon. E. P. Hamilton, Major
Bramley-Moore, J. Hill, hon. R. C.
Bridges, Sir B. W. Holmesdale, Viscount
Butler, C. S. Hopwood, J. T.
Cairns, Sir H. M'C. Horsfall, T. B.
Cave, S. Hotham, Lord
Close, M. C. Jolliffe, H. H.
Cole, hon. H. Kennard, R. W.
Cole, hon. J. L. Ker, D. S.
Collier, R. P. Kinnaird, hon. A. F.
Coningham, W. Knox, hon. Major S.
Craufurd, E. H. J. Langton, W. G.
Crossley, Sir F. Langton, W. H. G.
Davie, Sir H. R. F. Lawson, W.
Doulton, F. Lefroy, A.
Du Cane, C. Long, R. P.
Duke, Sir J. Lowther, hon. Colonel
Dundas, F. Mackie, J.
Edwards, Colonel Malins, R.
Egerton, Sir P. G. Matheson, A.
Egerton, E. C. Matheson, Sir J.
Ellice, E. (St. Ands.) Miller, W.
Ewart, W. Mills, A.
Montgomery, Sir G. Stanhope, J. B.
Morris, D. Setwart, Sir M. R. S.
Mowbray, rt. hon. J, R. Stuart, Lieut. Col. W.
Mundy, W. Tite, W.
Mure, D. Torrens, R.
Newdegate, C. N. Turner, C.
Noel, hon. G. J. Vance, J.
North, Colonel Vansittart, W.
O'Neill, E. Verner, Sir W.
Pakenham, Colonel Walcott, Admiral
Parker, Major W. Walker, J. R.
Peto, Sir S. M. Watlington, J. W. P.
Pevensey, Viscount White, J.
Pigott, Serjeant Williams, W.
Scott, Sir W. Yorke, hon. E. T.
Shelley, Sir J. V.
Smith, Abel TELLERS.
Smith, S. G. Mr. Whalley
Spooner, R. Mr. Somes
Acton, Sir J. D. Dillwyn, L. L.
Adair, H. E. Disraeli, rt. hon. B.
Addington, hon. W. W. Douglas, Sir C.
Angerstein, W. Duff. R. W.
Antrobus, A. Dundas, rt. hon. Sir D.
Atherton, Sir W. Egerton, hon. W.
Bagwell, J. Enfield, Viscount
Bailey, C. Ennis, J.
Baring, H. B. Esmonde, J.
Baring, rt. hn. Sir F.T. Evans, T. W.
Bass, M. T. Ewart, J. C.
Bazley, T. Fenwick, H.
Beaumont, S. A. Foley, H. W.
Beecroft, G. S. Foljambe, F. J. S.
Bellew, R. M. Forster, C.
Berkeley, hon. C. P. F. Forster, W. E.
Black, A. Fortescue, hon. F. D.
Blencowe, J. G. Fortescue, C. S.
Bond, J. W. M'G. French, Colonel
Botfield, B. Gibson, rt. hon. T. M.
Bouverie, hon. P. P. Gladstone, rt. hon, W.
Briscoe, J.I. Glyn, G. C.
Browne, Lord J. T. Glyn, G. G.
Bruce, H. A. Gower, G. W. G. L.
Buchanan, W. Greaves, E.
Buller, Sir A. W. Greene, J.
Butt, I. Greenwood, J.
Buxton, C. Gregory, W. H.
Cardwell, rt. hon. E. Gregson, S.
Cavendish, Lord G. Grenfell, C. P.
Cecil, Lord R. Greville, Colonel F.
Chapman, J. Grey, rt. hon. Sir G.
Clay, J. Grosvenor, Earl
Clifford, C. C. Grosvenor, Lord R.
Clifford, Colonel Gurdon, B.
Clifton, Sir R. J. Hankey, T.
Cobden, R. Hartopp, E. B.
Cochrane, A.D. R. W. B. Hassard, M.
Cogan, W. H. F. Headlam, rt. hon. T. E.
Colebrooke, Sir T. E. Henley, rt. hon. J. W.
Collins, T. Hennessy, J. P.
Corbally, M. E. Herbert, rt. hon. H. A.
Cowper, rt. hon. W. F. Hervey, Lord A.
Cox, W. Hesketh, Sir T. G.
Crawford, R. W. Hibbert, J. T.
Cubitt, W. Hodgson, K. D.
Davey, R. Hodgson, R.
Davie, Colonel F. Holford, R. S.
Dawson, R. P. Holland, E.
Dent, J. D. Horsman, rt. hon. E.
Dering, Sir E. C. Howard, Lord E.
Dickson, Colonel Howes, E.
Hutt, rt. hon. W. Redmond, J. E.
Jackson, W. Ricardo, O.
Jervoise, Sir J. C. Robertson, H.
Kekewich, S. T. Russell, H.
Kinglake, A. W. Russell, A.
Kinglake, J. A. St. Aubyn, J.
Kingscote, Colonel Salomons, Mr. Ald.
Leader, N. P. Scholefield, W.
Leatham, E. A. Scourfield, J. H.
Lennox, Lord G. G. Scully, V.
Lever, J. O. Seely, C.
Liddell, hon. H. G. Selwyn, C. J.
Longfield, R. Seymer, H. K.
Lowe, rt. hon. R. Shafto, R. D.
MacEvoy, E. Sheridan, H. B.
Mackinnon, W. A. (Rye) Smith, J. A.
M'Mahon, P. Somerville, rt. hon. Sir W. M.
Maguire, J. F. Stacpoole, W.
Manners, rt. hn. Lord J. Staniland, M.
Marshall, W. Stanley, Lord
Martin, P. W. Steel, J.
Martin, J. Stirling, W.
Massey, W. N. Sullivan, M.
Mitford, W. T. Sykes, Colonel W. H.
Moncreiff, rt. hon. J. Talbot, C. R. M.
Monsell, rt. hon. W. Thornhill, W. P.
Morrison, W. Trelawny, Sir J. S.
North, F. Vane, Lord H.
O'Conor Don, The Verney, Sir H.
O'Donoghue, The Vernon, H. F.
O'Ferrall, rt. hn. R. M. Villiers, rt. hon. C. P.
Ogilvy, Sir J. Vivian, H. H.
O'Hagan, rt. hon. T. Waldron, L.
O'Reilly, M. W. Walpole, rt. hon. S. H.
Padmore, R. Watkins, Colonel L.
Paget, C. Way, A. E.
Paget, Lord A. Western, S.
Pakington, rt. hon. Sir J. Westhead, J. P. Brown-
Palmer, Sir R. White, L.
Patten, Colonel W. Wickham, H. W.
Pease, H. Winnington, Sir T. E.
Peel, rt. hon. Sir R. Wood, rt. hon. Sir C.
Peel, rt. hon. F. Wrightson, W. B.
Pender, J. Wyvill, M.
Potter, E.
Price, R. G. TELLERS.
Pryse, E. L. Mr. Brand
Pritchard, J. Mr. Knatchbull-Hugessen
Puller, C. W. G.
Ramsden, Sir J. W.