§ SIR HARRY VERNEY
said, he would beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, Whether he will endeavour to devise means for the preservation of ancient monuments, many of them belonging to pre-historic periods, and some to the Roman occupation of Great Britain, which exist in different parts of the country, and many of which have been injured and partially destroyed, owing to the ignorance of their value and want of care of their owners?
§ MR. GATHORNE HARDY
replied that he had not seen the Notice of the hon. Member's Question before he came down to the House, but he thought that there 487 would be great difficulty in the way of the Home Department becoming also an archæological department. In the first place, they had no means to devote to the preservation of antiquities of that kind; and in the second, they were private property, and there would be no justification for the Home Department taking them under its charge. It was no doubt extremely desirable that they should be preserved, but the growth of intelligence in the country afforded, he thought, the best safeguard for their preservation.