HC Deb 24 March 1881 vol 259 cc1812-3

asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Whether his attention has been called to the following words of the honourable Member for Tipperary, spoken at Woodford on Sunday last:— Judge Fitzgerald had better take care that the National Land League did not do away with him and his salary; and also to the following words, spoken by him previously at Borrisokane:— An attempt has been made by some of the magistrates to induce the people to believe that this system of Boycotting is illegal. I tell the people to-day not to believe any magistrate that tells them that it is illegal, and if it be illegal to advise the people to Boycott any man who assists an oppressor or who takes a farm from which another has been evicted, then let the law prosecute me for stating it here to-day to you; and, whether he intends to take any steps in reference thereto?


Before the right hon. Gentleman answers that Question, I beg to ask him, Whether Mr. Justice Fitzgerald is the same as the Mr. Fitzgerald who, at a banquet to the Lord Lieutenant in Cork, in 1852, being still an unpromoted lawyer, made a speech of ultra-patriotic fervour, jumped on the table, broke the glasses, and otherwise gave evidence of extraordinary excitement; and whether no journalistic records remain of the scene from the fact that Mr. Fitzgerald went to the newspaper offices and asked to have the occurrence suppressed or toned down?


With regard to the Question of the hon. Member for Galway, I have to say I do not think it is one which I could under any circumstances be called upon to answer; and, suppose I could answer it without Notice, it is difficult to understand it. As to the Question of the noble Lord, my attention has been called to both the speeches referred to, and I can only say they will receive the careful attention of the Government. As to whether the Government intends to take any steps with reference to these speeches, the noble Lord must excuse me if I say I do not think it would be consistent with the public interest for me to answer that Question?


was understood to ask the Chief Secretary, Whether his attention had been called to a pamphlet by Mr. Henry Crompton on the Land League organization, Mr. Crompton being a high authority on legal matters, in which he stated that the Land League was a perfectly legitimate organization, and that "Boycotting" was not illegal?


I did not hear the hon. Member's Question; but, as far as I can make out, he asks me whether my attention has been called to a certain pamphlet. I do not know whether he wants me to give him any information about the pamphlet; but I must ask him to give Notice of the Question.


I beg to ask the right hon. Gentleman, Whether he is not aware that the "doing away with" at least two of the Irish Judges and their salaries has often been publicly advocated as a desirable reform, and well worthy the attention of Her Majesty's Government?

[No reply was given.]