HC Deb 22 June 1888 vol 327 cc1059-107
DR. CAMERON (Glasgow, College)

, in rising to move— That in the opinion of this House the Church of Scotland ought to be disestablished and disendowed, said, the question of Church Disestablishment differed in Scotland and in England in this material respect, that while the Church of England was in fact the Episcopal Church in England, the Presbyterian Church of Scotland was by no means synonymous with the Presbyterian Church in Scotland. It was, in fact, a mere fraction of it, and the connection between Church and State in Scotland had been the cause of every secession that had taken place within its ranks. Wholesale secessions had occurred, and a Presbyterian community had sprung up outside the walls of the Established Church essentially the same in doctrine, equal or greater in point of numbers, which was not behind the Established Church in material wealth and energy, which was perfectly efficient for the work of the country, and which, as a matter of fact, was carrying on the religious work of the country in the poorest districts in Scotland. So far from the present privileges and position of the Established Church having a tendency to bring about union in the different religious Bodies, it was admitted by the most far-seeing supporters of the Church—it was admitted, for example, by the Duke of Argyll—that nothing was so likely to bring about the union of the Presbyterian Bodies as Disestablishment. That opinion was held by the opponents of the Establishment. It was admitted on both sides that the present state of things could not last long in Scotland. Either Parliament itself must soon wake up to the inexpediency and injustice of the Establishment, the retention of whose privileges afforded a motive for a constant struggle against the sister institutions, or the Established Church would, by means of the State aid which it received, gradually weaken and undermine the great ecclesiastical edifice which had grown up by its aid. Among the Presbyterian communities the question of Disestablishment resolved itself into the question of whether the resources of the State, to which non-Churchmen as well as Churchmen had to contribute, should continually be applied to fostering the dependence of Presbyterianism on State aid; or whether, the connection between Church and State being severed, the principle of religious equality being practically recognized, and the property of the nation being applied to really national purposes, the Churches should be left to work out their own destiny in accordance with the spirit of the times. The statistics were disputed. On the one side the Established Church claimed a majority of the Presbyterian community—he did not think justly—and on the other side the Free and United Presbyterian Bodies claimed that they embraced a majority of the Presbyterian worshippers; but about this there was not the slightest doubt, that the Established Church did not embrace a majority or half of the population of Scotland. The highest claim advanced on behalf of the Established Church was only 46 per cent of the population. The number of places of worship maintained by the Established Church was over 100 less than those of other Presbyterian Churches, and about 1,000 less than those of the Nonconforming Bodies of Scotland. Now, he asked, why should this sect or section of the old creed continue not only this monopoly, but also be allowed to interfere in purely civil affairs at the present day? Why should it be allowed to control the Theological Chairs in the Universities; and why should its ministers enjoy any special immunity from taxation, or interfere through its Kirk Sessions with the constitution of Parochial Boards, to which were entrusted the incidence of the most important items of local taxation? It was in accordance with the spirit of the old times, when there was religious unanimity, that certain privileges should be conferred upon the Established Church. In those days it was held responsible for the poor, and for the morals of the people; but now a new state of matters had arisen. The Established Church had ceased to represent the community; it had ceased even to represent the Presbyterian community. Among a certain portion of the religious Bodies the connection between the Church and State was regarded as sinful and unscriptural, and conscientious objections were entertained to being compelled to contribute towards the maintenance of a State Church. A vast majority of the Free Churchmen considered that under existing circumstances the maintenance of the Established Church was unjust and inexpedient. The fact of the Free Church, which was favourable to the general principle of Establishments, having been compelled by force of circumstances to declare that the maintenance of an Established Church in Scotland was inexpedient and unjust, should be considered a testimony of enormous weight by the Members of this House. The indignation with which the Free Church had again and again resisted the pecuniary bribe of participation in the endowments to go over to the Establishment might be taken as a proof of the earnestness of conviction on the part of members of that Church. Of the two great Presbyterian Nonconforming Bodies in Scotland, one was dead against all connection between Church and State, and the other declared that in existing circumstances the maintenance of the connection was inexpedient and unjust, and besides those two Bodies there were a number of others who held precisely the same opinion—Baptists, Evangelicial Unionists, Methodists, Congregationalists, and others—all of whom protested against the maintenance of the Establishment as unjust. Again, it was not a Church question only, but Disestablishment was becoming a great political question. With hardly an exception, resolutions in favour of Disestablishment had been adopted by every Liberal association throughout the country, and wherever there was a conference of delegates of those Liberal associations resolutions in favour of Disestablishment and Disendowment were adopted now as a matter of course. Coming to the question of endowments, it was not easy to give exact figures, because most of them had to be dug up from a whole mass of documents. The endowments of the Church of Scotland amounted to between £330,000 and £350,000 a-year, exclusive of a sum averaging £40,000 a-year which the Church received in the shape of an assessment for the maintenance and repair of Ecclesiastical buildings. The total amount received by the Established Church of Scotland in the shape of endowments was therefore less than £400,000 per annum, and that was a mere fraction of the revenues of the Presbyterian Churches in Scotland, which amounted to about £1,750,000 sterling yearly. The endowments which the Church received from the State were from various sources. There was a sum of £17,000 got under Act of Parliament from the Consolidated Fund for the payment of stipends in the Highlands, which the right hon. and learned Gentleman the Lord Advocate (Mr. J. H. A. Macdonald) himself a few nights before had admitted to be wasted. There was another portion of about £20,000 derived from local and burgh assessments, and he did not think the right of Parliament to deal with a Parliamentary grant which was being wasted could be questioned, or that its right to deal with local assessments would be contested, As to the sum received by the Church in the shape of assessments for the repair and maintenance of Ecclesiastical buildings, their hon. Friends opposite admitted the right of Parliament to deal with it, inasmuch as Bills had con- stantly been brought in relating to the subject. But the greater portion of the endowments of the Church was derived from tiends or tithes. Those, his opponents said, were the patrimony of the Church, and they stigmatized any proposal to divert those tiends to secular purposes as spoliation and robbery. He denied that in toto. These endowments from the tiends or tithes were national property, and Parliament had a perfect right, having regard to life interests, to direct them to whatever purpose it pleased. Indeed, he considered Parliament had infinitely more right to deal with those tiends than with Corporation funds, and with the private and recent endowments for educational and charitable purposes on which in the public interest it so constantly laid violent hands. But if his opponents would assert that there was any spoliation in the question, he would reply that the right of the Church of Scotland to these tiends was based entirely on spoliation. Tiends were not instituted by the Presbyterian Church, but by the Roman Catholic Church or the ancient Caledonian Church, and if there was any spoliation, it was practised on the Roman Catholic Church at the time of the Reformation. The Scottish Parliament treated those tiends or tithes as public funds, and for several years after Presbyterianism had superseded Roman Catholicism as the Church of Scotland, no provision for the maintenance of Presbyterian clergy out of tithes existed. Again and again, in the course of various Ecclesiastical revolutions in Scotland, those revenues had been diverted from the Presbyterian Church as the national Church of the country and oscillated between Presbyterianism and Episcopacy. He contended that these tithes were purely national property, that the application of them to a single sect was unjust and inexpedient, because it afforded a lever for the injury of other Bodies who taught the same religion, and who were equally able to provide for the spiritual wants of the people. He maintained, also, that these endowments were unnecessary in the interests of Presbyterianism, because they constituted so small a fraction of the revenues of the Presbyterian religion that their withdrawal would not seriously affect it. He believed one effect of their withdrawal would be to bring about a re-union in the Churches, and effect a saving in the working expenses that would compensate for any immediate inconvenience. It was the principle of Disestablishment and Disendowment that he and those who supported him wished to vote in favour of. They had no wish to interfere with life interests, or to imitate the policy which the Church of Scotland itself, controlled by the State, was obliged to adopt in dealing with the people who seceded from it, and whom it sent forth to the world stripped of all their ecclesiastical property. He considered the present system unjust and inexpedient, and proposed another system which was just and expedient. He proposed that the application of the money shall be to some national object. It was calculated that the money would be more than sufficient to meet local charges for education throughout the country, and sufficient in many Highland parishes to provide a satisfactory solution for the crofter question. As to the destination of the funds, however, that was matter for subsequent deliberation. Meanwhile, he wished the House to affirm the principle that the endowments of the Church of Scotland should be put an end to. The position of the Church of Scotland had ceased to be what it was 20 years ago. Its members had adopted an aggressive attitude, and that was the reason why Disestablishment was demanded. The Patronage Act was the first step in this policy of aggression. [Cries of "No!"] Was it not the passing of the Patronage Act that preceded the action of the Free Church in regard to Disestablishment? Since then the aggressive policy of the Church and its friends had been steadily continued. Only two Sessions ago a measure was introduced by the hon. and learned Member for the Inverness Burghs (Mr. Finlay) which was intended to withdraw from the Free Church community into the Establishment a number of Highland congregations. Then his hon. Friend (Mr. J. A. Campbell) had on the Paper a Bill which all the Nonconformists of Scotland regarded as a measure to strengthen the Established Church of Scotland at the expense of the Free Church. Moreover, there had that very day been brought forward by a noble Lord in "another place" a resolution to make the Established Church a really National Church, by allowing all Protestant ratepayers to vote in the election of her ministers. There were four Amendments on the Paper against the Motion. The first was by the hon. Member for the Central Division of Glasgow (Mr. Baird), the second by the hon. Member for the Glasgow and Aberdeen Universities (Mr. J. A. Campbell), and the third by the hon. Member for St. Andrew's (Mr. Anstruther). The hon. Member for the St. Rollox Division of Glasgow (Mr. Caldwell), in his Amendment, introduced the Treaty of Union, but, so far as regarded the Church of Scotland, the Treaty of Union was irreparably broken—almost before the ink on it was dry—by the passing of the Act of Queen Anne which re-imposed lay patronage on the Church of Scotland. The Free Church, which now proclaimed the maintenance of an Establishment to be inexpedient and unjust, could advance the very best title to being the real heir of the pre-Union Church of Scotland. He (Dr. Cameron) did not propose any measure for the Disestablishment of the Church of Scotland, but simply proposed a Resolution which would afford means for the Representatives of the people of Scotland in the most authoritative and Constitutional manner to declare their wishes upon the subject. He had moved the same Resolution in the last Parliament, and had been defeated by a large majority, but in the minority were a considerable majority of the Scotch Members, and a very large majority of the Scotch Liberal Members. Including those who afterwards became Unionists, they were three to one in favour of the Motion, and exclusive of those Gentlemen they were seven to one. In 1877 it was evident that in consequence of the Patronage Act the question of Disestablishment and Disendowment in Scotland would become an active and burning question. That was prophesied by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Mid Lothian (Mr. W. E. Gladstone), who said that the attempt that had been made to buy out piecemeal what had been driven out wholesale would produce that effect. When the official Leader of the Liberal Party—the noble Lord the Member for Rossendale (the Marquess of Hartington)—made a speech at Glasgow embodying the policy of the Liberal Party on the subject of Disestablishment, he declared that whenever Scottish opinion, or even Scottish Liberal opinion, was fully formed on this question, he would venture to say that the Liberal Party as a whole would be prepared to deal with the question on its merits without reference to any other consideration. To that declaration the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Mid Lothian had repeatedly expressed his adhesion. The subject had been kept back for years,—first, because the county franchise question took the lead; and, secondly, at the Elections since another important question had been paramount. There were no longer any reasons which made it expedient to suppress this question, and the time had now come when he called upon the Leaders of the Liberal Party to give effect to the promises that for 10 years had been dangled before the eyes of the Scottish people, their most zealous supporters. He believed that on this occasion he should not appeal to them in vain to redeem their pledges. In October the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Mid Lothian made a speech at Nottingham, in which he referred at considerable length to the Disestablishment and Disendowment of the Church in Wales and Scotland. He declared that the question stood in the first rank of legislative urgency, and repeated his declaration that it ought to be dealt with in accordance with the views of the Scottish people. He further said that if Scotland sent as good a body of Home Rulers to Parliament as Wales, the question of Disestablishment in Scotland would take priority, because Scotland would be able to hold her own. [Laughter.] The right hon. and learned Lord Advocate had great power of laughter; but he did not laugh when he heard the news of the Ayr Burghs Election, and he knew the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Mid Lothian would recognize that every seat that has been won by his Supporters in Scotland since the split in the Liberal Party had been won in every single case by men favourable to Disestablishment. He would remind the right hon. Gentleman and the Leaders of the Liberal Party of the Scottish proverb, "Giff-gaff maks guid friends; "and that the obvious corollary of the proposition laid down by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Mid Lothian was, that if he would strengthen the Liberal ranks from Scotland and the Party he led, he must give a proof of the practical nature of the belief which he had expressed on behalf of himself and his Friends that this question was now ripe for decision. The hon. Member concluded by moving the Resolution of which he had given Notice.

MR. ESSLEMONT (Aberdeen, E.)

in seconding the Resolution, said, it might not be inappropriate, as the Motion had been proposed by the Representative of a largo city constituency, that he, as representing one of the large county constituencies in the North-East of Scotland, should second it. His hon. Friend (Dr. Cameron), he thought, had made out his case for Disestablishment, and they would look to the other side to make out a case for the continuance of religious inequality in Scotland. The hon. Member for the Central Division of Glasgow (Mr. Baird) had put an Amendment on the Paper which in plain language said that the Motion tended to irreligion and immorality. He (Mr. Esslemont) need not say that, as a Presbyterian and a loyal adherent of the same Confession of Faith as the hon. Gentleman, if he thought the Motion had a tendency to irreligion and immorality, he should be the last person in the world to preach the doctrine of Disestablishment. The hon. Member for the Glasgow and Aberdeen Universities (Mr. J. A. Campbell), who also had an Amendment on the Paper, objected to the Motion, because the position of the Church of Scotland did not warrant them in interfering. He (Mr. Esslemont) had never, in the discussion of the subject, made comparisons with Churchmen, and he was willing to admit, having been connected with the Presbyterian Church for nearly 40 years, that during the most of that time the Church of Scotland had been growing in activity and in vigour in the great work of religion throughout Scotland. But why should they not interfere with that temporal question of Disestablishment and Disendowment? The Church of Scotland was established for three purposes. Its first duty, he admitted, was to look after the religion of the people; but there were two other duties reposed in it under the old parochial system. The first of these was the charge of the poor; but that duty had long ago been consigned to the tender mercies of the ratepayers. The second was the education of the young; but that also had been removed from the hands of the Church; and he challenged any of the champions of the Church to say that the Education Act had not been, in the main, a great benefit to Scotland. Therefore, two of the elementary functions of the Church of Scotland had been disposed of, and the question they had to consider was, whether the time was not come when the endowments of the Church should be distributed over an area which would be useful to the whole community, instead of confining them any longer to the upholding of what was merely a section of the Church. It had been said that the people of Scotland did not wish their Established Church to be interfered with; but how could the minds of the people of Scotland upon this point be ascertained? The question had been brought prominently before the minds of the Scotch electors during recent elections, and the people had declared themselves either in favour of or against Disestablishment and Disendowment, and it was notorious that the largest portion of those returned were in favour of religious equality. The hon. Gentleman the Member for the St. Andrew's Burghs (Mr. Anstruther) had said in his Amendment that they ought not to apply this money for secular purposes. It was a new doctrine that money which belonged to the public might not be applied for any purpose which the country thought best deserving of support. Many people argued, and it was a favourite assertion of those who were opposed to him upon the question, that the supporters of Disestablishment were in favour of taking away a certain patrimony from the people of Scotland. He thought it only required a very elementary consideration of the question to lead one to the conclusion that neither he nor anyone else proposed to do anything of the kind. Not one farthing of this money would be lost to the people of Scotland. He asked merely whether the time had not come when they might apply it for a universal purpose, in which every parishioner would have an equal share. The proposition of the hon. Member for the St. Rollox Division of Glasgow (Mr. Caldwell) was somewhat contradictory. The hon. Member first said that the Imperial Parliament could not interfere, and then he said that the Imperial Par- liament ought to interfere as soon as the people of Scotland told it do so. He left the hon. Member on the horns of the dilemma. There either ought to be home rule on this question, or there ought not. He would make the friends of the Established Church a present of the fact which they put forward, that they were in a large majority in Scotland. In that case, on account of their power and their numbers, they ought to be the more ashamed to take from their Roman Catholic brethren, their Episcopalian brethren, and those who differed from them, the money to support their religion. In the county he represented, there were in many of the parishes one endowed Church and two other Churches belonging to the same denomination, which were neither endowed nor established. These were chapels of ease. Did this great Established Church of Scotland hold to its principles? No; it did not. In not one of those parishes did the old Church seek to divide its loaves and fishes with the others. The whole endowment was kept to the one Church, while the others were allowed to find the means of grace in voluntary subscriptions. Yet this Church, which they were told existed on endowments, really raised as much by voluntary subscriptions as it did from endowments. He did not wish to raise the sectarian question. He was content to rest himself on the political aspects of this question, and he was obliged, in accordance with principles which he had always held, to say that they should no longer withhold from the people in the country a share in the administration of funds to which they had an equal right. He had much pleasure in seconding the Amendment of his hon. Friend.

Amendment proposed, To leave out from the word "That" to the end of the Question, in order to add the words "in the opinion of this House, the Church of Scotland ought to be disestablished and disendowed,"—(Dr Cameron,) —instead thereof.

Question proposed, "That the words proposed to be left out stand part of the Question."

MR. BAIRD (Glasgow, Central)

, who had given Notice of the following Amendment— That, in the opinion of this House, the Disestablishment and Disendowment of the Church of Scotland would be contrary to the interests of religion and the moral welfare of the people, and this House therefore declines to entertain the proposal, said, since he had given the Notice he had been given to understand that the Rules of the House precluded him from moving the Amendment, and that nothing remained for him but to meet the original Resolution with a direct negative, seeing that the Division would take place on the Question that Mr. Speaker do now leave the Chair. He was perfectly satisfied with that. His only wish was that the question should be properly and adequately debated, and that a Division should be taken upon it. The hon. Member for the College Division (Dr. Cameron) asked the House to agree that the Church of Scotland should be Disestablished and Disendowed. It was the desire of the hon. Gentleman that his proposition should be carried out to its logical conclusion at as early a date as possible. The idea was evidently intended to be conveyed to the electors, that if they would only return a sufficient majority to Parliament they might look forward to the Disestablishment of their national Church. He (Mr. Baird) did not think such a great question as the Disestablishment of the Church of Scotland ought to stand on such a footing. It ought to stand by itself and be judged on its own merits, and its fate should be decided apart from any other consideration whatever. It had been suggested on high authority, expressed in many quarters, that the matter should be left entirely to the people of Scotland—that if they decided that Disestablishment should take place, then there was nothing more to be said. He agreed with that opinion to a certain extent. He believed that when the people of Scotland had fully made up their minds that the Church should be Disestablished and Disendowed, it would then take place. But what he wanted to know was, how were they going to gauge the opinion of the people of Scotland? They might endeavour to make it a test question at the General Election; but he thought every Member of the House would admit that it would be utterly impossible to separate such a question as Disestablishment from the thousand and one questions which agitated the minds of the electors at such a time. They could not avoid mixing it up with the Land Question or the Drink Question, and say they had a decision on Disestablishment. A plebiscite is sometimes mentioned in this connection, a sort of glorified local option, in fact; and possibly the machinery provided by the hon. Member for Linlithgowshire (Mr. M'Lagan) would be brought into operation for the purpose. They would then see, not whether the people would abolish public-houses, but whether they would abolish what was one of the greatest enemies to drunkenness. It was often said that the people of Scotland were Radical; but upon some questions he claimed they were the most Conservative people on the face of the earth, and, if this question were put to them fairly and unobscured by other questions, he believed they would display a Conservatism which would be absolutely shocking to many hon. Members opposite. The fact was, the Scotch people had not been consulted on the matter at all. It was said the other night that Scotch opinion was overborne in that House; but as for this being the voice of the country, he would only like hon. Members to go down to their constituencies and take their stand on the single platform of the Disestablishment of the Church, and they would soon see whether the statement that the voice of Scotland, which hon. Members said was to be overborne to-night, was a true one or not. That question of Disestablishment, involving as it did separation from the State, was one on which the English Members were perfectly entitled to give their opinion. He should be glad if the hon. Member for the College Division would bring in a Bill formulating in plain language his proposals, and he should like to appear on the back of it some names he could mention. A few years ago a Bill was brought in by Mr. Dick Peddie, which was one of the wildest ever brought from the Bar to the Table of the House, and it contained proposals so revolting to the people of Scotland, that he was absolutely inundated with Petitions against it. That Bill was dead and buried, and he did not think it would ever be resuscitated. On the back of that Bill appeared the name of the hon. Member for the College Division, but that was no reason why the hon. Gentleman should not introduce a Bill on his own behalf. Many of the hon. Members who sup- ported the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Mid Lothian (Mr. W. E. Gladstone) upon general questions of policy, he believed, would be very much inclined to withdraw their support, and no one knew that better than the right hon. Gentleman himself. In 1885, when the question of Disestablishment was brought forward, a great agitation was raised against it by the Liberals, and at the last moment the right hon. Gentleman withdrew the subject, finding he had made a mistake, and the election proceeded on other questions. He (Mr. Baird) deprecated the idea that the support of the Church devolved entirely on the Conservative Party. There was no one who was acquainted with the history of Scotland who did not know that since the secession of the Free Church in 1843, the Church had made up much of her lost ground, and had greatly recovered from the severe blow then dealt her; but that was no argument, although often used, why she should be dealt another blow in the shape of Disestablishment and Disendowment. Although much of the lost ground had been made up, there was still a large field for her exertions, and any measure that might arrest the development of the Church, such as Disestablishment, was contrary to the religious and moral welfare of the people of Scotland. He was not going into the question whether these endowments were national property or not, but in this connection he would like to point out that the Church itself was the property of the nation, and was free to all. There was nothing to prevent any man—whether United Presbyterian, Free Church, Roman Catholic, or Atheist—from going into the Church and partaking in its services. He maintained that the Church of Scotland outnumbered, by a large majority, the communities of the Free Church and United Presbyterian Church, and it outnumbered all the other Churches, including the Episcopalian and the Roman Catholic Churches, by over 60,000, and he believed it would be shown that the accommodation provided by the Nonconformist Bodies was very small in comparison with that provided by the Established Church. The argument as to the voluntary offerings of the Established Church being smaller than those of the Free, was a purely commercial one. It was treating the Churches as if they were great Railway Companies competing, against one another. In order to obtain a true comparison as to the liberality of the two Churches, the amount of private income of the individual members had to be taken into consideration. The true test of the value of a Church was not the amount of money it gave, but the amount of good it did. It had been said that Disestablishment would lead to a union of the Churches; but he scouted the idea, and wanted to know whether, if the Church was Disestablished, it was at all likely to rush into the arms of the Nonconformists? Suppose one brother fell out with another, was it likely that union would be promoted by one brother giving the other a blow in the face? The Church of Scotland was a progressive Church. Parliamentary Returns in 1874 showed that the number of communicants in the Church of Scotland was 460,000, in 1878 they numbered 515,000, and by the Parliamentary Return for 1884 the number had still further increased to 555,622. Since 1843, the year of the Disruption, 352 new parish churches had been erected, and nearly £2,000,000 had been spent in building churches and manses and in endowing churches. In conclusion, he said that the Established Church had made enormous strides of late years, and was still growing. It had great influence amongst the people of Scotland, and no one who loved his country could look unconcernedly at a blow directed against the Church, which, if effectual, they believed would do serious damage to the best interests of the people of Scotland.

MR. HOZIER (Lanarkshire, S.)

said, he desired to congratulate the hon. Gentlemen the Mover and Seconder of the Resolution on the direct character of the Motion they supported. He, for one, greatly preferred an honest, upright, straightforward opponent to one who shilly-shallied and beat about the bush; and to those who pursued such tactics, he would say that even on the lowest ground, the ground of expediency, it was madly a paying policy to run with the hare and hunt with the hounds. He did not think the hounds cared much for those who hunted along with them and yet were continually trying to throw them off the scent, while, on the other hand, the hare did not care very much for even the sweetest scent of those who ran along with it, because in that sweetness was always a nasty taint of red currant jelly. Those who were conscientiously in favour of the maintenance of the connection between Religion and the State had good reason to congratulate themselves upon the progress their cause was making, and the way in which Disestablishment was more and more going into the background of late years. In proof of this he would call a witness who could hardly be said to be favourably inclined towards the Church—namely, the hon. Member for the College Division of Glasgow (Dr. Cameron) himself. That hon. Member, in 1885, before the General Election, gave Notice of a Motion which stood in the Order Book of the House of Commons for the next Session, as follows:— Dr. Cameron—Church of Scotland Disestabment—That in the opinion of this House the Church of Scotland ought forthwith to be disestablished and disendowed. Now the hon. Member brought forward a Motion upon the same subject, but omitted from it the word "forthwith." That was to say, that the General Election of 1885 killed the word "forthwith." [Laughter.] Surely the omission of that important word showed that between 1885 and the present time popular opinion in Scotland on the subject of Disestablishment had undergone a marked change. To prove that the cause of Disestablishment was losing ground he would call another hostile witness—the evidence of friendly witnesses not being nearly as telling—to testify that in 1884 it was nothing like so ripe as it was in 1874. Mr. Anderson, then Member for Glasgow—no relation, he believed, of the hon. Gentleman who at present represented the counties of Elgin and Nairn—Mr. Anderson speaking in that House, on 11th June, 1884, said— He had always voted for Church Disestablishment as a matter of justice.…. He looked on that question from that point of view, and yet he was bound to say that in Scotland the question of Disestablishment was less ripe for solution now than it was 10 years ago. It was, he believed, a riper question in England, and certainly in Wales, than in Scotland. For one thing, Dissent had been uuder no social ban in Scotland.….There were other reasons which his hon. Friend very fairly pointed out—grievances in England and Wales—which did not apply to Scotland. A proof that the question was less ripe now than 10 years ago he gathered from his own constituency. His constituency was, to a large extent, for Disestablishment, and had always been so. Ten years ago he or his Colleague, or any Member of Parliament, could have got a bumper meeting in the largest hall in Glasgow in support of a Disestablishment Resolution. But about two years ago several prominent Liberationist M. P.'s went down to Glasgow and convened a meeting, and though they had the assistance of his hon. Friend and Colleague (Dr. Cameron) they could get nothing more than a half-filled hall. That was a very significant fact indeed."—(3 Hansard, [289] 41–2.) The Motion before the House was a mere abstract Resolution; but four years ago the advocates of Disestablishment went the length of introducing a definite proposal in a Bill. The Bill of Mr. Dick Peddie, he would remind his hon. Friend the Member for the College Division of Glasgow, was a Bill bristling with Compensation Clauses. The landlord, the heritor, the minister, and the clerk were to be compensated; in fact, everybody was to be compensated except the poor man who was to be deprived of the Church which was his birthright. It had been said that the Scottish people were enthusiastically in favour of such a measure; but, if so, that enthusiasm was shown in a somewhat strange and curious manner On the back of that Bill appeared five names. The first was that of Mr. Dick Peddle. They all knew what happened to him. He was defeated for the Kilmarnock Burghs, in spite of a speech delivered for him by his hon. Friend the Member for the College Division, and he retired into private life. The next name was that of Mr. Webster, then Member for Aberdeen; he also had retired into private life. The middle name was that of his hon. Friend the Member for the College Division. The fourth name was that of Mr. Henderson, then Member for Dundee, who had retired into private life; and the fifth name was that of Mr. C. B. Bright M'Laren, who was recently defeated for the Borough of Stafford. He might, therefore, apply to his hon. Friend the Member for the College Division of Glasgow the words— 'Tis the last rose of summer left blooming alone; All its lovely companions are faded and gone. Now, to what was the miraculous escape of the hon. Member for the College Division due? It might have been due to good luck or it might have been due to good management. To good luck, inasmuch as his was the middle name of the five, and there was an old Latin saying which ran—"In medio tutissimus ibis." But more probably it was owing to good management. Yes; good management, which consisted in the hon. Member repudiating every line of the very Bill on the back of which his name appeared. He would remind his hon. Friend that he was quite an old enough "Parliamentary hand" to know that it was just as dangerous a matter to put one's name on the back of a Bill in a political sense as it was to put one's name on the back of a bill in private life. There were responsibilities which one incurred in these circumstances which one could not shirk. The only way in which his hon. Friend could escape from the difficulty of the responsibility which faced him in connection with Mr. Dick Peddie's Bill was by saying that it was a Disestablishment Bill, and he did not like it to go forward without having a finger in it.


said, he never repudiated any responsibility which he had ever incurred for the Bill. He approved of the principle of the Bill; but as for the details, he did not either suggest or draft them.


said, exactly so; his hon. Friend backed a blank Bill as a matter of form, which entailed unpleasant responsibilities in political just as in private life. Whatever they might say with regard to this question, there was no doubt Mr. Dick Poddie's Bill held the field as far as any regular measure was concerned. It had never been superseded by any other scheme; and he would put it to any candid Scotsman whether it was not still more unpopular than any other measure ever presented to a country? They would be told that the votes of the majority of the Scotch Members would show the feeling of the majority of the Scotch people on the subject of Disestablishment. He emphatically denied that, whichever way the majority went. [Cheers and laughter.] He observed that the jeers came only from the Irish Members, who could hardly be expected to know much about the subject. The question of Disestablishment was by no means a test question either in 1885 or in 1886. What was Lord Rosebery's opinion? Whatever might be said for or against Lord Rosebery, no one would deny that he was the most admirable electioneering agent any candidate could wish, and one to whom the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Mid Lothian was deeply indebted. In a letter to Dr. Hutton, dated Mentmore, September 3, 1885, he said— I do not agree with you that the moment has come for making the disestablishment of the Church of Scotland an indispensable part of the Liberal programme. I do not believe that the country is ripe for it, while I suspect the main result of raising it would be to further Conservative prospects in the coming election. If the people of Scotland wish for disestablishment, nothing can prevent its becoming a test question; if the people of Scotland do not wish for it, nothing can make it one. To my mind, the main issue to be fought at those elections is whether the country is to be ruled for the next six years by Liberal or Conservative methods, to which all other controversies are subordinate. That was to say, Disestablishment was subordinate to the question of who was to sit on the Government Bench or on the other side. Moreover, a very important statement had been made by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Mid Lothian (Mr. W. E. Gladstone) on the subject which he (Mr. Hazier) did not think had been quoted at all. In the authorized edition of the right hon. Gentleman's speech, delivered on November 11, 1885, in the Free Assembly Hall, Edinburgh, the right hon. Gentleman said, with regard to Dr. Cameron's Resolution— Gentlemen, I think the second question put to me is whether I should accept Dr. Cameron's resolution as conclusively conveying the opinion of the people of Scotland. In my opinion, gentlemen, we are not now speaking of the next Parliament. It is agreed we are now speaking, not of the next Parliament, but of the Parliament after it. Would that resolution be a binding resolution, accepted as conclusive with regard to the possible opinion of the people of Scotland on the question by the Parliament after the next? I tell you fairly no such resolution could be accepted as conclusive of the opinion of Scotland. It would require a long series of such resolutions, probably for a considerable time, to give that solidity to a declaration of that sort that would justify Parliament in so regarding it. We will take the supposition either way. Let us suppose that in this election the Church question is made a test question, and that Dr. Cameron's resolution was carried by a majority of Scottish Members. Well, people would very naturally say this. They would say an election carried upon this question as a test question is not a fair indication of the opinion of the people of Scotland on the subject, because the candidate who has voted for it has done so in consequence of the pressure brought to bear upon him at the election, and from the particular position of parties in his constituency it would be more in his interest to go in that direction than in the other direction. That is very unsafe ground to stand upon, and Parliament would be very slow to recognize it. But let us suppose, on the other side, that it is not made a test question. Well, then, if our view were to prevail, and if I am right in saying that every Liberal voter ought to support a competent Liberal candidate at this election, whatever be his opinion on the Church question, then, of course, no such resolution could be accepted as conclusive, because, as I have said, men were elected on general grounds of Liberalism, and were not elected on the Church question. He defied anyone to say that the Church Question was a test question in 1886 any more than in 1885. He himself spoke with a free hand, because he was for the Church both in 1885 and in 1886. His opponent, Lord Hamilton of Dalzell, shilly-shallied in 1885, and said he would not vote either way. Lord Hamilton defeated him by shilly-shallying. But the electors found him out, and in 1886 he (Mr. Hozier) beat him, although Lord Hamilton then threw in the extra bait of Disestablishment. Coming now to the Church of Scotland itself, he would emphatically affirm, without fear of contradiction, that it was universally respected and beloved even by those outside it. He would quote the testimony of the hon. Member for North Aberdeen (Mr. Hunter) who was strongly opposed to an Established Church. Speaking in the House of Commons, on March 30, 1886, the hon. Member said— In Scotland the Established Church is in doctrinal unity with the leading non-Established Churches. It was not an alien Church representing a hostile creed. It is the old Church, which at one time embraced within its fold the entire Presbyterian community in Scotland. It is a Church that was regarded, even by those who did not belong to it, without the smallest particle of anything like animosity. Its clergy are a hardworking and learned body of men, whose emoluments did not err on the side of excess, and it was not encumbered with overpaid and under-worked dignitaries. All its clergy meet on a footing of democratic equality, and its laity, equally with its clergy, shared in the government of the Church. Its history every Scotchman can read with pride. This was strong evidence in favour of the Establishment. He could not do better, in conclusion, than give the testimony of the late Mr. Forster, the son of a Nonconformist and brought up in the strictest tenets of Nonconformity. On January 5, 1878, at Bradford, Mr. Forster used these remarkable words— Not only at present is it the business of the clergy of the Established Church to care for their parishioners, but these parishioners know that it is their business. There is not a man or woman among them, no matter how poor or degraded, who, when sick or sorrowful, or sore beset by the troubles of this life, has not a right to go to their parish clergyman and to ask him, 'What have you to tell me about that better life which is to come.' Now, I am not prepared to take this right from these men and women, and I am all the less prepared to do so because I know that vast numbers of the dwellers in these cottage hovels and in these city cellars go neither to the parish church nor to any church or chapel; but they know, and I wish them to continue to know, that they may ask for the religious help of their minister of religion—not because they are members of this or that congregation, but simply because they are Britons. He entirely concurred in those words. Therefore, he cordially supported the Auld Kirk of Scotland. He firmly believed in the infinite wisdom of the text which said—"Prove all things; hold fast that which is good." It was because the Church of Scotland had been proved, because it had been proved and not found wanting, that he had so much pleasure in supporting it. It was a Church which, in his opinion, secured that in the very poorest districts, quite as much as in the richest, and in times of apathy no less than in times of enthusiasm, there should be that constant maintenance of religious ministration which was so necessary to the welfare of the people. In these circumstances, he for one would not venture, and he earnestly trusted that the House would not venture, to do anything towards depreciating or minimizing an influence which, whatever its opponents might say—and, goodness knows, opponents would say almost anything—had done and was doing an enormous amount of good.

MR. SHIRESS WILL (, &c.) Montrose

said, he was unable to come to the same conclusion as his hon. Friend (Mr. Hozier). The question had been agitated in Scotland for a considerable time, and he believed it was now ripe for a settlement. It never would be any riper, for the time had come when the conditions that ought to precede the settlement of that or any question had occurred, and every condition precedent to a settlement was now realized. He freely admitted that the discussion had, on all hands, been conducted with good temper and good feeling. He was unable to agree with his hon. Friend's (Mr. Baird's) Amendment, or with the reasons by which he supported it. At the same time, he agreed with the hon. Member that this question ought not to be mixed up with any other question. He (Mr. Shiress Will) believed no section of the House desired to mix the question up with any other question in the political programme. It should be judged upon its merits, and if it had any demerits, it ought to be condemned for them, and not for the demerits of any other question. His hon. Friend (Mr. Baird) said the proper time for dealing with the question would be when the people of Scotland had fully made up their minds upon it. But how were they to know that, except through the voice of the Representatives of the people in that House? Statistics had been widely circulated on both sides of the question, and had been fully dealt with by his hon. Friend (Dr. Cameron); but he did not care whether the number of communicants was slightly larger on one side or the other. The time had gone by for counting heads. The question had been so well considered and so thoroughly argued, and was so well understood in Scotland, that it made no difference whatever, whether they had a few figures more on one side of the question than on the other. Then the Mover of the Amendment and his hon. Friend who had just sat down had treated the question as if the Resolution committed those who supported it to an approval of Mr. Dick Peddie's Bill. But he thought a very large number of those in favour of solving the question before the House in the way proposed in the Resolution disagreed with the details of Mr. Dick Peddie's Bill. He (Mr. Shiress Will) disagreed with the details of it. If such a Bill were again put before the constituencies of Scotland, while the great bulk of the people would approve of the general principle of the measure, yet they would be distinctly in favour of dealing in a more generous and gentle way with the great interests concerned in the matter. It was further said that they ought not to make this a Party question; but it was impossible to treat this great and important matter otherwise than as a Party question, although he admitted it was one that should be dealt with with extreme care and caution. Hon. Gentlemen opposite did not hold out any hope that they would join in settling the question, and if it was not to be treated as a Party question, he was at a loss to know how they could deal with the subject. His hon. Friend had said that there was not much enthusiasm on the subject, and that it had not been made a test subject at the last Election. That was correct up to a certain point, because, while in some constituencies it was not a test question, in others it distinctly was. Then his hon. Friend went on to show how he had defeated his Liberal opponent by being firm and consistent in the expression of his views on the Church. The Member for the Central Division of Glasgow had threatened the right hon. Member for Mid Lothan with the loss of many votes if he took up this question. The answer to that was, that at the end of 1885 the delegates from the Liberal Associations throughout the whole of Scotland met at Perth and came to the conclusion— That the time had now come for making Disestablishment a plank in the Liberal platform, and that the question should be dealt with in a fair and generous spirit at the earliest opportunity. But, he would remind the Gentlemen who had spoken on the other side of the House that the claim of other Churches in Scotland to the endowments now enjoyed by the Established Church could not be lightly passed over. What was the claim of the other two great Presbyterian Bodies in Scotland in regard to endowments? When the bodies now united under the name of the United Presbyterians left the Church of Scotland, they did so because they conscientiously believed that it was wrong to depend upon State connection and control. And when the Free Church in 1843 went out, it was also on the question of State control and the question of patronage. But when those Bodies went out, they still left behind them their claims on the national funds, which were being administered by the Body to which they had previously belonged. These funds contemplated the helping of the poor and the promotion of education, as well as the ministrations of religion. Therefore, it was but just and right that they should be allowed to urge the claim that those national funds should now be utilized for the benefit of the whole community at large. That matter could only be settled in one way, and the sooner it was settled the better it would be for the peace and harmony of those different Bodies which were, after all, brethren, and the better also for the best interests of the country.


said, that the observations of the last speaker had accentuated the statement made in the early part of the debate that the proposition before the House related to the present time and not to any remote or indefinite period. But there had been a remarkable abstention on the part of hon. Gentlemen who had spoken on the opposite side from the discussion of the practical question raised by such a proposal, whether it was in the interests of popular utility in Scotland now that such a change as that should be carried out. The speech of the hon. Member for the College Division of Glasgow (Dr. Cameron) almost compelled comparison with some previous statements that had been made on the same subject and from the same quarter; and he thought that those who had heard that hon. Member that evening, and also those who had heard or read his former speeches, would agree with him that his speech that night was a more attenuated exposition of the subject than the House had ever yet listened to. The range of argument, and even illustration, had been greatly narrowed; and, positively, the question of Disestablishment had been treated merely on the footing of certain excrescences upon the existing Establishment, such as that of members of the Established Church having seats on Parochial Boards for the administration of the Poor Law. The hon. Gentleman had not discussed that subject at great length, perhaps, because he thought the House was so familiar with it; but if he deemed it right to propound so momentous a change as his Resolution contemplated, the House were entitled to measure the degree of urgency and the expediency of his proposals by the scale of the reasons he had assigned for them. One view of the question of Church Establishments was that the establishment of religion in any country was abnormal, and that it was not the province of the State to provide religious endowments, but that they should be left entirely to voluntary effort. If that were the proposition on which the hon. Gentleman invited the judgment of the House now, the debate would not range over more than one or two subjects of discussion. The hon. Gentleman had only to formulate his conscientious scruple and to find out how many Members in the House there were who shared it. But the matter in discussion was not and could not be limited to so very abstract and meagre a thesis. The subject necessarily led up to the question of whether the popular welfare and general good of Scotland were promoted by the Establishment which now existed; and it was impossible to disregard the various circumstances, historical and otherwise, which distinguished Scotland from other countries as far as that matter was concerned. The hon. Member had mentioned rather than argued the invidious position in which Establishment placed a Church. He could only say, if the hon. Gentleman took the instances he had given as mere illustrations of his arguments, that they might do away with the position of ministers of the Established Church at Parochial Boards, because the essence of the question of establishment did not lie in any accidental arrangement of that kind. It was, therefore, a mere ad captandum argument to introduce such a reference to the precedence of ministers of the Establishment in such a debate. When the hon. Member passed to the question of disendowment, there was not observable a much increased scale of liberality in his method of discussion. But he would glance at the arguments which the hon. Member had used, which were three in number. In the first place, the hon. Member said that the possession of endowments by the Church of Scotland was an injustice to the other Churches. Now, he could not himself understand or at all fathom what was meant by that. The endowments were held for the ministrations of religion in Scotland to as many people as they would enable the ministers to reach. Was it an injustice to other religious bodies that this Church should have money ready in hand while the other Churches had to go and search for it? ["Hear, hear!"] Yes; if it was merely a question of envy or personal jealousy. But there was no injustice if the fact of there being those endowments meant merely an increment of spiritual means for the general welfare of the country; and it was because hon. Gentlemen persistently separated the question of personal prestige and jealousy of ministers from the question of the whole welfare of the people that the House had heard those unfortunate references to ignoble subjects of mere ecclesiastical and sectarian rivalry. The hon. Gentleman also objected to the endowments because they were unnecessary. Did he mean that the endowments were unnecessary in order to enable the aggregate body of ministers in the country to overtake the spiritual necessities of the people? If he did, the hon. Member would find the opposite asserted by all his clients in the Nonconformist Body. Then the hon. Gentleman asserted that disendowment would promote reunion. He confessed he was unable to see how the question of reunion entered into the question of disendowment. Did the hon. Gentleman believe that it would promote reunion to have less money as a basis for their common operations, or did it mean anything else than that they should make a sacrifice of the endowments to the envy of those who had not? The hon. Gentleman had made no substantive proposals as to the application of the funds set free by disendowment. He did not understand an argument on that subject which did not consider the relative advantages and disadvantages of the old use of that money and the new. They had a right to know, before they assented to the negative side of this proposition, what was the positive proposal. They were there to do their best for the people of Scotland. He asserted that the vast majority of the people of Scotland believed that the best use of the endowments which could be made was that which was made of them at present. But if anyone gainsaid that assertion he ought to be able to show where was the other object of popular utility of competing importance and necessity which was to absorb the endowments. Abstract discussions about Disestablishment and Disendowment revealed the fact that the main interest, which was that of the people, was being lost sight of in order that they might pursue the interests of ecclesiastical rivalry to the verge of caricature. In a question of this kind he did not defend the existence of Establishment and endowment in Scotland on any dilatory pleas, upon mere prescription, upon mere grounds of Conservatism. He took the positive and firmer position, and said that it would be an injustice to the Church to rest her claim to the continuance of present rights and endowments upon anything short of this. He asserted that the answer to the question, what is the mind of the people of Scotland upon this subject, was to be found in the history of the last 40 years. The right hon. Member for Mid Lothian (Mr. W. E. Gladstone), and those who acted with him in politics, had always been seeking for a sign. The right hon. Gentleman and his supporters were extremely anxious that the mind of the Scottish people should be made clear on the subject. Let them find the deliberate, growing, and emphatic preference of the people of Scotland during the last 40 years in the growing strength of the Established Church. It was in the historical development of national convictions during the last 40 years, and not in snap majorities, or in managed elections—it was there hon. Members would find the deliberate, permanent, and reliable voice of the people. Hon. Gentleman opposite had said nothing more about statistics on this question, except that they would not weary the patience of the House. There had been times when questions of Disestablishment had been raised, and when statistics were considered to be highly relative and germane to the subject. When they found that the statistics now proved the increasing strength of the Church in membership and in contributions, in its energy and aggressiveness against evil, then he thought that the Church of Scotland had a right to point to the voice of the people as distinguishing its claim to continue in the position assigned to her by the historical decision of the people, and also by the increasing loyalty of all classes. He would not dwell on the figures, because they were not controverted. Let them take any period they chose—10, 20, 30, or 40 years—the progress had been all one way. The Church of Scotland had been growing—that was the increasing testimony of history; and he said it, but not invidiously, that the relative strength of the denominations had been lessened. But another point had been raised. The hon. Gentleman said that the Church of Scotland had brought this attack upon herself because she had adopted a policy of aggression. Yes; a policy of aggression, because every ecclesiastical Body which existed was aggressive. The Church of Scotland was aggressive if by that was meant that she sought to do away with limitations and asked for the relaxation of privileges and rights which might trench upon the scope of her activity. And here he found a proof that the objection of hon. Gentlemen to the Established Church of Scotland was that the tide was rising on her side, and that they must make haste or they would be too late. If the policy of the Church of Scotland had been directed to an increase of privileges, or if it had been a policy of inertness, then he could understand this attack. But her policy had been the exact reverse. She did not ask for an increase of privileges. She asked for power to do away with abuses, and for means to set forth her own claims as tested by the voice of her own people. Therefore, he could not assent to the view that the measures proposed from the other side were proper methods of retaliation upon the aggressiveness of the dominant Church. The Church of Scotland had endeavoured to fulfil the duties which a State Church had necessarily to discharge. The hon. Member referred to the Bill of the hon. and learned Member for Inverness (Mr. Finlay). That Bill was a testimony to the desire of the Church to do away with all causes of division, and to bring within her borders those who historically belonged to her. It was impossible to discuss this subject without referring to the speeches of the hon. Member for East Aberdeenshire (Mr. Esslemont) and the hon. Member for the Montrose Burghs (Mr. Shiress Will), and what they called the political side of this question. That was a side with which the right hon. Member for the Bridgeton Division of Glasgow (Sir George Trevelyan) was not completely unacquainted. He could not have desired a greater piece of political good fortune than to have seen enacted on the floor of that House the little comedy at the close of the speech of the hon. Member for the College Division of Glasgow. The hon. Member closed his speech by saying that the right hon. Member for Mid Lothian had at Nottingham made certain statements which encouraged the belief that there was an open offer for certain support, and the hon. Member proceeded to address his Leader or those who represented him in this debate, and to ask for some practical proof of his Leader's sincerity. A wicked world said that such things were generally done; but they were not generally done on the floor of the House of Commons. It was the height of cynicism, even in an ecclesiastical discussion, for the hon. Gentleman to hold up the Church of Scotland in view of the people of Scotland, and propose to make terms with the right hon. Gentleman as to political support. The right hon. Member for Bridgeton was going to speak, perhaps to reply, to the offer of political support. He should like to know if the right hon. Gentleman was going to close with it. Might he put it otherwise, and ask, could the right hon. Gentleman repudiate it; and was it not eminently suggestive that the hon. Member for the College Division, and others who had spoken on the opposite side, had most deliberately objected to the fusion and identification of this question with some other questions which had recently been in somewhat labouring circumstances. He hoped the people of Scotland would take notes of the tone of this discussion as taken by its promoters—that they would notice that on the other side of the House this question had never been discussed in their interest, but that it had been discussed in the interest, on the one hand, of rival sects, and, on the other, of aspiring and enterprising politicians.

SIR GEORGE TREVELYAN (Glasgow, Bridgeton)

said that the Solicitor General for Scotland had concluded with some remarks on what he called the political side of the question. The hon. and learned Gentleman referred to the sentences in which the hon. Member for the College Division closed a speech which, down to these sentences, was a truly admirable one, and very glad he was that these sentences, in which, perhaps, he might find something to take exception, were addressed to a Bench upon which the first man who was going to rise was himself. The hon. and learned Gentleman spoke of some of them as looking for a sign. The hon. and learned Gentleman could know very little about his political history. Some 18 years ago, when he was a young and poor man, the Government brought in a measure which he conceived to be inconsistent with the principles of religious equality. He resigned Office, and, as he thought, sacrificed his political prospects. In 1885—he might appeal on this matter to his hon. Friend the Member for Roxburghshire (Mr. A. R. D. Elliot), who a moment ago was sitting behind him—before the Election, the Presbytery of Jedburgh addressed a menacing letter to both of them, requiring them not to vote for the Disestablishment of the Church if the question was raised next Session. He told the Presbytery that he was always in favour of Disestablishment and Disendowment, and would vote for it if the question was brought forward. Coming to later times, but times still anterior to those to which reference had been made, the hon. and learned Member for the Inverness Burghs (Mr. Finlay) had brought in a Bill which went to the root of the question of Disestablishment; and, as a Member of the Government of the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Mid Lothian, he had himself made a strong Disestablishment and Disendowment speech in answer to that Bill; and not only that, but he and his right hon. Friend beside him had voted for the exact Motion which had been brought forward that evening, before any of the events to which the hon. and learned Member had referred. He agreed with that part of the speech of the hon. Member for the Central Division of Glasgow (Mr. Baird)—which had not descended to these topics—in which he had hoped that that debate would not be obscured by any side question, as was the case in the constituencies. As far as he himself was concerned, it would not be so obscured; he would go straight to the point. The hon. Member for South Lanarkshire (Mr. Hozier) had told them that they must prove all things. He did not know that the hon. Member had proved much; but, for his own part, he would undertake to say nothing of which he would not give proof; he would go to the centre of the question, and every word he would say should bear on the question of Disestablishment and Disendowment from the point of view of the highest interests and duty of Scotland. He must congratulate his hon. Friend on having come first that evening. It was very important that they should have a debate, and still more that they should have a Division. He was very anxious to bring this question to the test, both as a Liberal and as a Scotch Member. The Solicitor General for Scotland asked them to say why they were in favour of Disestablishment. As Liberals, they held that State connection was a bad thing; they considered that it fettered and narrowed the Church which was within its influence, and that it depressed and was unfair to the Churches outside of it. They held that it had the deleterious effect of all privilege, ecclesiastical and political; and they held, above all, that the public religious endowments of a nation should not be given for the benefit of one religious body within that nation, but should be applied to uses which should benefit and meet the conscientious wishes of the whole community. He was not ashamed, as a Scotchman, to say that he was very anxious to have this debate. He thought that there was a good deal of sense in what had been said by the noble Lord the Member for Rossendale (the Marquess of Hartington) and the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Mid Lothian, that this question of the existence of an Established Church should largely be governed by the preponderating opinions of the people in the district and in the country in which that Established Church existed; and he understood that that was the opinion of some of the opponents of the hon. Member. The hon. Member for the St. Andrew's Burghs (Mr. Anstruther) had brought forward an Amendment, in which he said that there was no demand on the part of the people of Scotland for the severance of the relations between their Church and the State. The hon. Member for the St. Rollox Division of Glasgow (Mr. Caldwell) also brought forward an Amendment, in which he declined to adopt the Resolution until the people of Scotland should first, in some constitutional or authoritative manner, have distinctly signified their desire for such Disestablishment or Disendowment. Now, he was utterly unable to conceive in what constitutional and authoritative manner the people of Scotland could signify such desire except through the mouth of their Parliamentary Representatives; and if the majority of the Representatives for Scotland decided against them to-night, he should be none the less glad that they had brought this matter to the test. It showed that they were not afraid of their views, and it led the country to look upon the question as a practical one. It was a question which the House could not leave alone, and which it never did leave alone. From both sides of the House Resolutions and Bills relating to the Church of Scotland were constantly being brought forward, and he ventured to say that in the course of the next 20 or 30 years the time of Parliament—if that were the only consideration—would be saved if this Resolution were adopted and the proposals contained in it carried into law. The reason of that was that the abuses of the Church of Scotland were so palpable and so great that Bills were constantly being brought forward to deal with them. These Bills were brought forward by the friends of the Church for the purpose of diminishing the invidiousness of its privileges. In 1874 they had had from the defenders of the Established Church an Act for abolishing patronage. Taken by itself there was nothing objectionable in that Act; but when they took it in connection with the fact that there were other large Presbyterian Bodies in that country, he ventured to say that the Church had no right—as long as it insisted upon keeping up State connection and keeping all its endowments—to continue to enjoy those material advantages, and at the same time to ask for the spiritual advantages which the other Churches had gained by sacrificing everything. Then the hon. and learned Member for Inverness had, two years ago, brought forward a Bill for declaring the constitution of the Church of Scotland. In that Bill he had asked them to set the Church free from State control. Now, this freedom from State control was the only thing that the other Churches had which compensated them for being without endowment and State connection, and it was this purpose and this spirit which had brought this question to the present stage. They could not expect these great voluntary Churches to sit quietly by while Bills were brought in for the purpose of taking away their adherents one by one—[Ministerial cries of "Oh!"]—certainly that was the object of them; what other object was there?—and leaving the ministers of the Churches high and dry, isolated and deserted, with all the immense material and educational and religious interest which were in their hands. It had been because they were threatened in such a manner with gradual extinction that these great voluntary Bodies had come forward. Since then all the denominations outside the Established Church had distinctly declared that if it wanted to have the same advantages as they possessed it must seek them in the same manner by giving up its connection with the State. He had already stated that it was important to get the votes of the Scotch Members on this question. But it was also important to get the votes of English Members. He should like to say a few words to English Members from the point of view of an Englishman, who had been a Scotch Member for a number of years, and who, as an Englishman, brought originally to the consideration of the question a certain freshness of view. English Members were, perhaps, not aware of the fact that the privileges of the Established Church in Scotland were much greater than those of the Established Church in England. In England the income of poor benefices was increased out of Church funds, but in Scotland the income was made up out of Imperial taxes. ["No, no!"] That fact, at any rate, could not be denied. There was annually paid out of the Exchequer to make up Scotch livings as much as £17,000. He had before him some figures with regard to a number of parishes all in one county, Ross and Cromarty, which threw a remarkable light on the statement of the Solicitor General for Scotland as to the increase of membership in the Established Church. In Kinlochlaidart there were 632 people and 15 communicants of the Church of Scotland; in Knock, 2,990 people and four communicants; in Poolewe, 2,317 people and 25 communicants; in Uttapool, 2,573 people and 17 communicants; and in Cross, which had 2,795 people, and Barvas, which had 2,600 people, there were five communicants between them. And the Solicitor General for Scotland told them that the Church of Scotland was making a great advance all over the country, and embracing within its fold the great mass of the people! To each of these parishes there was paid out of the Exchequer £120 a-year. Both Parties in the House were at the present time looking in every direction to see where economies could be made. Here was a case in which a large number of ministers were being paid out of State funds who were doing nothing and for whom there was nothing to do. It was a great abuse. In Ireland it was a serious thing when there were parishes in which the clergyman only had a congregation of three or four persons; but in that case the clergyman was not paid out of the taxpayers' money as in Scotland now. Such payments out of the Exchequer for sectarian purposes, and under the circumstances he had mentioned, would, in the case of lay services, be regarded as an indefensible job. But this was not the only privilege enjoyed by the Church of Scotland which the Church of England was without. Church rates had been abolished in England; but in Scotland £50,000 a-year was raised from persons of all denominations for the repair and rebuilding of churches and manses of the Established Church. The smaller heritors were exempted; but this was really a great injustice to the larger heritors. If this was an inalienable obligation, then the poor should pay it as well as the rich. If it was not, it ought to be swept away altogether. Besides these grants from the Exchequer and these payments towards the repair and maintenance of churches and manses, which were in the nature of Church rates, large payments were also made out of the pockets of the ratepayers. In many large towns in Scotland it was the ratepayers, who were generally voluntaries, who had to bear the expense of the worship of the Established Church. In Glasgow, £5,000 a-year was paid out of the Corporation funds—funds which, if not paid for this purpose, would go to the relief of the ratepayer—for the services of the Established Church. As a set-off against that, there were the pew rents; but it was a most remarkable comment on the Solicitor General's observation that, while they were embracing large numbers into the fold, those pew rents were steadily diminishing. In Edinburgh the payments could not fall short of £6,000 or £7,000 a-year; but he did not, of course, maintain that those payments were made at present out of taxes levied—though they were so paid in a certain part, but in another large part they were the produce of taxes previously levied and capitalized. In Aberdeen £1,100 or £1,200 a-year was paid out of the Corporation fund, and, in proportion, a like sum in the case of Dundee, Perth, and Stirling. He was certain it was in the interest of the Church, owing to the dissatisfaction such a charge created, that it ought to be abolished. Then there was the anomaly of Established Church ministers sitting ex officio along with members of their Kirk Session upon Parochial Boards which had the power of levying taxes. If there was ever a Body which ought to be elective and neutral, surely it was the Parochial Boards; and while ministers of the Established Church had this privilege, they were themselves exempt from taxation. Again, what could be more indefensible and offensive than the tests applied to University Professors? Eighty per cent of Scotland was Presbyterian; but still, in the great Presbyterian Bodies, the Professors were taken exclusively from the Established Church. But that was not all. All the Professors of Greek, Latin, and Natural Science were obliged to swear that they would not exercise their functions to the prejudice or subversion of the Established Church. Now, there they had disabilities which long ago had been abolished by Parliament in the English Universities. This system led to this anomaly—that eminent men from Oxford and Cambridge who crossed the Border had to take this theological test, which was worthy of the Middle Ages. The only defence that he had heard of such a system was that the Church was the Church of the nation; that it was all but the universal Church. But it was not a universal Church. It was far from it. The Presbyterians were 80 per cent; but the Established Church was considerably less than 50 per cent of the Presbyterian Body. ["No!"] The only way in which they would arrive at this was to take a count of the Representatives who voted in Parliament. Now, the Free Church and the United Presbyterian Church between them had 100 places of worship more than the Established Church; and it must be re- membered that these churches were built because they were wanted. Well, but it was said the Established Church was kept up for the sake of the poor. But was that correct? The poorest of the poor were to be found in Lewis; and what were the statistics of the Established Church in that island? The population of the parish of Barvas was 2,700, the Established Church had 5 communicants; Stornoway had 7,399 people and 11 communicants; Uig, 3,490 people and 49 communicants; Harris, 4,360 people and 26 communicants; Lochs, 6,284 people and 7 communicants; so that out of 23,500 inhabitants in Lewis, 23,000 were adherents of the Free Church, and what it was in Lewis, though in somewhat less proportion, it was all over the Highlands. It was said that there were 356 rural parishes in which there were neither United Presbyterian nor Free Church places of worship; but many of them were very small parishes, and their populations attended Free and United churches in adjoining parishes, just as in a parish he was familiar with in Northumberland the majority of the people were Methodists or Presbyterians and went to buildings outside the parish. And, no doubt, there were in Scotland parishes in which there were no members of voluntary Churches, just as in other parishes there were no members of the Established Church. When it was asked how the Established Church was to meet the needs of the poor parishes, he replied, in the same way that the Free Church had met the spiritual needs of Lewis. No Scotchman would fail to find the means to worship in the church to which his inclination and his conscience led him; and it was a libel on the members of the Established Church to suggest that they would be less generous than the members of the voluntary Churches. The United and the Free Churches had raised between them in the course of the year nearly £1,000,000. That proved that either their adherents were more numerous than they were admitted to be, or else that having to pay for their own worship made them exceptionally generous and public-spirited. But he would never argue this question as one of privilege or of money if Disestablishment were opposed to the highest interests of the Established Church; but to set it free from State control, to throw it on its own resources like its Sister Churches, and, above all, to relieve it from the task of fighting for privileges, were the truest services you could render it. When he was a very young man he came to the conclusion that there was no nobler training for the great mass of working people than the exercise of the public spirit and self-denial which were required for the maintenance of their religion. It was no wrong to demand from the Established Church the same efforts, labours, and sacrifices which had been spontaneously made by the voluntary Churches; but it was a great wrong to allow the public endowments of a great country to be monopolized for the benefit of one religious body, instead of being applied to the general, public unsectarian needs of the entire community.


said, that the right hon. Gentleman had indulged in some interesting personal reminiscences; but it was not apparent why he had done so.


said, it was because he was charged with taking up this question on political ground.


said, it was not certainly his business to question the right hon. Gentleman's consistency; but the hon. Member for the College Division had referred to the unholy connection that had been established between political and ecclesiastical questions in a sense which must touch the right hon. Gentleman rather nearly. He was quite content to accept the statement of the right hon. Gentleman that he had been a consistent advocate of Disestablishment, and that he repudiated the bargain of supporting it for the sake of gaining adhesions to Home Rule, and he was glad that the question had been placed on the broad grounds of the maintenance or abolition of the Established Church, because it would lead the House to understand what was the ultimate tendency of the Motion now before it. The right hon. Baronet said he was anxious to bring this question to the test. They on the Government side had not raised it; but they should not shrink from the test. This question of Disestablishment had been dragged into a prominence for which there was no occasion. The Church of Scotland was doing its work steadily and carefully, and was annually making large additions to the number of its members, and consequently there had been no reason, on account of its failure in efficiency, to bring this question before the House of Commons. The right hon. Gentleman had shown a certain amount of inaccuracy in his allegations. He said that in England, for example, the statement of the right hon. Gentleman that the grant of £17,000 a-year in aid of the poorer parishes in the Highlands was taken out of the taxes of the people was absolutely without foundation. It was a historical fact that since the Reformation a certain portion of the teinds, the patrimony of the Church, had formed part of the hereditary revenues of the Crown; and it was but a small portion of these that was annually granted in aid of those poor parishes in which there were no unexhausted teinds to call up in supplement of the inadequate stipends. Was it possible that the right hon. Gentleman was ignorant of that? For a long period the Established Church of Scotland had made great efforts to meet the wants of the growing population. Within the last 40 years it had established 350 new parishes in order to meet the religious requirements of an increasing population. Since 1834 the numbers of the members of the Church in Scotland had largely increased, and in no sense had that Church fallen back. The right hon. Gentleman had said that the connection with the State imposed fetters on the Church. In that year, by a wise measure, Parliament had removed from the Church the fetters, and made amends for the injuries of former legislation. It was owing to the enactment of lay patronage, alien to the feelings of the people of Scotland, at the beginning of the last century, and to the failure of the Government of the day to appreciate the gravity of the crisis, that the Church had lost so many of its people. Was the Church to be debarred from renewing its attempts to be freed from the burdens which had so long oppressed it, and against which it had so long struggled? And how was it an offence against those who had left the Church on account of those burdens that its efforts were at last successful? The abolition or, lay patronage and the attempts which had since been made to obtain for the emancipated Church the declaration by law of an ancient principle, cannot justly be called aggression; they are symptoms of true liberality in throwing wide the doors for the re-entry of those who never, but for the mistakes of statesmen, would have been separated. The right hon. Gentleman had referred to-night to the recent debate upon ecclesiastical assessments, with regard to which it seemed to him (Sir James Fergusson) the other night that he was rather hazy; and he alleged the inconsistency of their maintenance as a legal obligation when compulsory Church rates had been abolished in England. But he forgot, or he was strangely ignorant, that the landed proprietors of Scotland still retained the enjoyment of an income from the unexhausted teinds, much larger than the annual charge of about £40,000 or £50,000, for the maintenance of the ecclesiastical fabrics. And if the ecclesiastical assessments fell upon them alone, as it was maintained they should, it would be impossible to allege in that a well-founded grievance. Again, he called it an injustice that the City of Glasgow should be obliged, out of its common good, to supplement a deficiency in the income from seat rents. Was it possible, he (Sir James Fergusson) asked again, that he did not know that a portion of the teinds were assigned to the city on condition of its maintaining certain churches, and the same obligation existed in certain other towns? He was, indeed, unable to accept the falling-off in the seat rents of certain churches as a proof of the defects of the ministrations. It was the effect of a change in the character of the resident population, the wealthy having, in some cases, moved elsewhere and erected new churches for their own accommodation. Nor, he trusted, would they admit the exaction of seat rents as a wholesome feature in Church management. He wondered to hear the right hon. Gentleman rake up again the buried controversy of Church Endowments in Edinburgh. Some of them were old enough to remember the long contest about the Annuity Tax there, and the settlement of the matter by a legislative compromise not too liberal to the Church. As to what the right hon. Gentleman called the unfair representation on the Parochial Board, and the presence of the parish minister as its Chair- man, he (Sir James Fergusson) would remind the House that before the institution of the new Poor Law the Kirk Session was the only authority by which the poor was relieved; it was not, therefore, surprising that in the newly constituted Body the Chairman of the Kirk Session, who by his office was brought so much into contact with the poor, should have a place. A small matter, indeed, to call for Disestablishment! The true defence of the Church as a National Institution was that it was the religious embodiment of the nation; and in the National Church of Scotland was found an organization altogether in harmony in its confession and in its character with the genius and instincts of the Scottish people. That Church had never used its privileges for selfish purposes. Had it done so, there might have been some reason for the House passing a Vote of Censure upon it. But as it had always done its best for the spiritual welfare of the community, he saw no reason for condemning it in the way indicated by the Resolution moved by the hon. Member. In those circumstances, was it reasonable to withdraw from it the means of meeting the wants of the poor and of giving free ministration to all the people of the country, and of accomplishing the purpose for which it existed? The right hon. Gentleman made much of the fact that in the Highlands and Islands the people largely belonged to the Free Church. That was true, because there they had strongly resented the intrusion of unacceptable ministers; but in the Highlands this proposal for Disestablishment had met with no support, while in Mid Lothian itself, a county which had given such pledges to Liberation, when the question was put to the test, 69 per cent of the electors had voted in favour of the retention of the Establishment. He ventured to think that no case had been made out for Disestablishment, and he trusted that the result of the Division would show such an advance on that of 1886 as would utterly frustrate the views of the hon. Member for the College Division of Glasgow.

MR. H. ANSTRUTHER (, &c.) St. Andrew's

said, he wished particularly to avoid bringing the question down to the level of political controversy. He could not congratulate the right hon. Member for the Bridgeton Division of Glasgow on the spirit which he had brought to bear on this discussion of a question which deeply concerned the people of Scotland, and which they were prepared to consider on its merits. If that was the spirit that Englishmen who sat for Scottish constituencies, as the right hon. Baronet described himself, were prepared to bring to bear on this question, then he would rather the discussion were confined to Scotchmen sitting for Scotch seats. He would rather treat the question they were dealing with upon its merits, and the Church as an institution doing good in the country to which he belonged. It had not, he submitted, been proved by the hon. Member, in bringing forward this Motion, either that the Church of Scotland was in the minority, or that she had failed to fulfil the sacred trust imposed upon her by the people of Scotland. Nor had it been proved that the connection of the Church with the State was detrimental either to one or the other; and, lastly, he took this point—that it had not been proved that there was any large demand upon the part of the people of Scotland for the change advocated by the hon. Member for the College Division. Hon. Members from Scottish constituencies who had followed closely the course of events in Scotland in 1885 would bear him out in the assertion that every expression of opinion of the people from every part of the country had been against the proposal for Disestablishment and Disendowment. [Opposition cries of "No!"] A vast majority had indicated that as their opinion, and in Mid Lothian nearly two-thirds of the registered electors of that constituency petitioned against Disestablishment. Consequently, they were told by the right hon. Member for Mid Lothiaan that Disestablishment was not to be made a test question at the General Election, and he did not believe it was a test question except in a very few instances. He wished specially to draw the attention of the House to the point which he had given expression to in the Amendment which, by the Rules of the House, he was precluded from moving—it was that there was no substantial demand on the part of the people of Scotland for this change. This was proved by the statistics which the supporters of the National Church had placed before the House, and he trusted the House would reject the Motion by as substantial a majority as it had done on previous occasions. The Church of Scotland had nothing to apologize for in the past, and nothing to be ashamed of. The members of the Church of Scotland only wanted to live in peace and go on with their good work; but if attacks of this kind were to be made on the Establishment and Endowment, there were many Members on his side of the House, and also, no doubt, a large number of Members on the other side, who were prepared to resist them; and, moreover, they would be able to prove to their opponents that they would be able to rally to their side a large number of the people of Scotland.

MR. MARJORIBANKS (Berwickshire)

said, he rose to explain the vote he was going to give. The last two speakers had endeavoured rather to prove that the Church of Scotland was doing a good work than to show that it was doing that good work in such a peculiar and exclusive manner that to it alone should be granted State endowment and support. That was the point on which the House would divide that night. No one denied the good work the Church of Scotland was doing. On the contrary, many held that it had a great future before it, and that that future would be enhanced by the withdrawal of State support. It seemed to him that when there were three Presbyterian Churches in Scotland, all having the same form of Church government, all holding exactly the same creed and using the same Service, it was an anomaly that to one alone State support should be granted. The hon. Baronet opposite said that two years ago he (Mr. Marjoribanks) voted in exactly the opposite sense to that in which he was going to vote that night. He admitted that, and he would tell the House the reason. At the Election of 1885 he especially and particularly reserved this subject when he asked his constituents to return him again as their Member. He then distinctly stated that he would not, during the Parliament elected in 1885, vote in support of a Motion for the Disestablishment of the Church of Scotland without putting the question to his constituents; but with the Parliament of 1885 that pledge fell to the ground. [A laugh.] Hon. Members opposite seemed to insinuate by their laughter that when they made pledges they kept them for over. How about coercion in Ireland? He repeated that with the Parliament of 1885 that pledge fell to the ground, and he was elected to the present Parliament without any pledge on the question. The reason he gave the pledge at all was that he had hoped that there might be one great Presbyterian Church, endowed and supported by the State, which would combine all the Churches in Scotland. He believed, however, that was a foolish dream, and it was because he believed that the only chance for the union of the three Churches was the Disestablishment and Disendowment of the Church of Scotland that he intended to support the Motion.

THE LORD ADVOCATE (Mr. J. H. A. MACDONALD) (Edinburgh and St. Andrew's Universities)

The right hon. Gentleman who has just sat down need not have taken up the time of the House by accounting for his giving a different vote now from that which he gave in 1885. It is not such an exceptional case on that side as to make it worth his while. The question of Disestablishment is not the only question on which pledges have been given and broken. When the right hon. Gentleman twits hon. Members on this side of the House on the course which they have taken in reference to Ireland he forgets altogether that the circumstances surrounding the question may have changed; but he cannot point to any circumstances which have arisen in connection with the Church of Scotland between 1885 and the present day to justify his change of opinion upon that subject. I presume that when he voted for the Establishment in 1886 he did so because his constituents desired that he should do so. What has happened since to make him and his constituents alter their mind? I presume that the hon. Member for the College Division thinks that this question is ripe for a decision, and the right hon. Member for Mid Lothian said that it was at Nottingham. Surely if that is so, this is a question upon which the House ought to have the best advice that can be given by the Leaders on both sides. Now, I want to know where are the Leaders of the Party opposite? Why has the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Derby (Sir William Harcourt) taken a back seat? Where is the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Mid Lothian (Mr. W. E. Gladstone), who is a Scotch Member and the Leader of the thought on the other side; surely he was the proper person to guide the Liberal Party, and, if he could, the House to a proper decision on this question. The hon. Member for the College Division professes to believe that the storm is rising. I think, however, he must have been disappointed with the tone of this debate. Surely if the storm was rising the stormy petrel would be here. The right hon. Member for Mid Lothian, when in Office in 1886, was able to speak some kindly and hopeful words in regard to the hon. Member's Motion; but now that he is in Opposition, in a position "of greater freedom and less responsibility," he does not think it worth while to come here to support the hon. Member, or even to say that he stands in the same position towards this question as he did in 1886. He can fly those kites at Nottingham, but we want him to come here to tell us whether it is the policy of the Liberal Party that there ought to be no connection between Church and State anywhere in the United Kingdom. The right hon. Member for the Bridgeton Division is the only Member who has had the honesty in this debate to put this issue clearly before the House. Everybody knows that there are Gentlemen sitting on the opposite side of the House who care nothing about the Church of Scotland and know nothing about it, who take no interest either in its success or failure, but whose sole object is to use this question as a stalking-horse in their endeavours for the destruction of the Established Church in England. There is no enthusiasm save the enthusiasm which is worked up outside Scotland by the Liberation Society, who do not care one rap about the Church of Scotland. I shall not enter into the general question after the very able speech of my hon. and learned Friend near me, who put the matter upon a sound and intelligible basis. The right hon. Gentleman the Member for the Bridgeton Division has referred to paltry sums, amounting in all to £25,000 at the most out of £500,000, and which, he says, are paid to the Established Church of Scotland out of the Exchequer. The right hon. Gentleman is not accurate in his facts, and he affords another instance of English Gentlemen who come to represent Scotch constituencies, but who take very little trouble to inform themselves on matters on which they speak, and indulge in denunciations not based on facts but on their own imagination.

Question put.

The House divided:—Ayes 260; Noes 208: Majority 52.

Addison, J. E. W. Curzon, hon. G. N.
Agg-Gardner, J. T. Dalrymple, Sir C.
Ainslie, W. G. Darling, C. J.
Allsopp, hon. G. Davenport, H. T.
Ambrose, W. Dawnay, Colonel hon. L. P.
Amherst, W. A. T.
Anstruther, Colonel R. H. L. De Cobain, E. S. W.
De Worms, Baron H.
Anstruther, H. T. Dimsdale, Baron R.
Ashmead-Bartlett, E. Dixon-Hartland, F. D.
Bailey, Sir J. R. Donkin, R. S.
Balfour, rt. hon. A. J. Dorington, Sir J. E.
Barclay, J. W. Douglas, A. Akers-
Baring, T. C. Dugdale, J. S.
Barry, A. H. S. Duncan, Colonel F.
Barttelot, Sir W. B. Duncombe, A.
Bates, Sir E. Dyke, right hon. Sir W. H.
Bazley-White, J.
Beach, right hon. Sir M. E. Hicks- Ebrington, Viscount
Edwards-Moss, T. C.
Beach, W. W. B. Egerton, hon. A. J. F.
Beadel, W. J. Egerton, hon. A. de T.
Beckett, E. W. Elcho, Lord
Bentinck, rt. hn. G. C. Elliot, Sir G.
Bentinck, Lord H. C. Ewart, Sir W.
Bentinck, W. G. C. Ewing, Sir A. O.
Beresford, Lord C. W. de la Poer Farquharson, H. R.
Feilden, Lt.-Gen. R. J.
Bethell, Commander G. R. Fellowes, A. E.
Fergusson, right hon. Sir J.
Birkbeck, Sir E.
Blundell, Col. H. B. H. Field, Admiral E.
Boord, T. W. Fielden, T.
Borthwick, Sir A. Finch, G. H.
Brodrick, hon. W. St. J. F. Finlay, R. B.
Fisher, W. H.
Bruce, Lord. H. Fitzwilliam, hon. W. H. W.
Caldwell, J.
Campbell, Sir A. Fitzwilliam, hon. W. J. W.
Campbell, J. A.
Carmarthen, Marq. of Fitz-Wygram, General Sir F. W.
Cavendish, Lord E.
Chaplin, right hon. H. Folkestone, right hon. Viscount
Charrington, S.
Churchill, rt. hn. Lord R. H. S. Forwood, A. B.
Fowler, Sir R. N.
Clarke, Sir E. G. Fraser, General C. C.
Cochrane-Baillie, hon. C. W. A. N. Fulton, J. F.
Gardner, R. Richardson-
Coddington, W.
Coghill, D. H. Gathorne-Hardy, hon. A. E.
Compton, F.
Cooke, C. W. R. Giles, A.
Corbett, J. Gilliat, J. S.
Corry, Sir J. P. Godson, A. F.
Cotton, Capt. E. T. D. Goldsworthy, Major General W. T.
Cranborne, Viscount
Cross, H. S. Gorst, Sir J. E.
Cubitt, right hon. G. Goschen rt. hon. G. J.
Currie, Sir D. Granby, Marquess of
Curzon, Viscount Gray, C.W.
Green, Sir E. M'Calmont, Captain J.
Grimston, Viscount Madden, D. H.
Grotrian, F. B. Makins, Colonel W. T.
Gunter, Colonel R. Malcolm, Col. J. W.
Hall, C. Mallock, R.
Halsey, T. F. Maple, J. B.
Hambro, Col. C. J. T. Marriott, rt. hon. Sir W. T.
Hamilton, right hon. Lord G. F.
Matthews, rt. hon. H.
Hamilton, Lord C. Mattinson, M. W.
Hamilton, Col. C. E. Maxwell, Sir H. E.
Hamley, Gen. Sir E. B. Mildmay, F. B.
Hanbury, R. W. Mills, hon. C. W.
Hankey, F. A. Milvain, T.
Hardcastle, E. More, R. J.
Havelock - Allan, Sir H. M. Morgan, hon. F.
Moss, R.
Heathcote, Capt. J. H. Edwards- Mount, W. G.
Mowbray, rt. hon. Sir J. R.
Heaton, J. H.
Herbert, hon. S. Mowbray, R. G. C.
Hermon-Hodge, R. T. Mulholland, H. L.
Hervey, Lord F. Muncaster, Lord
Hill, right hon. Lord A. W. Murdoch, C. T.
Newark, Viscount
Hill, Colonel E. S. Noble, W.
Hill, A. S. Northcote, hon. Sir H. S.
Hoare, E. B.
Holloway, G. Norton, R.
Hornby, W. H. O'Neill, hon. R. T.
Houldsworth, Sir W. H. Paget, Sir R. H.
Howard, J. Parker, hon. F.
Howorth, H. H. Pearce, Sir W.
Hughes-Hallett, Col. F. C. Pelly, Sir L.
Penton, Captain F. T.
Hulse, E. H Plunket, rt. hon. D. R.
Hunt, F. S. Plunkett, hon. J. W.
Hunter, Sir W. G. Powell, F. S.
Isaacson, F. W. Puleston, Sir J. H.
Jackson, W. L. Raikes, rt. hon. H. C.
Jardine, Sir R. Rankin, J.
Jeffreys, A. F. Rasch, Major F. C.
Jennings, L. J. Reed, H. B.
Johnston, W. Richardson, T.
Kelly, J. R. Ridley, Sir M. W.
Kennaway, Sir J. H. Ritchie, rt. hn. C. T.
Kenyon, hon. G. T. Robertson, Sir W. T.
Kenyon-Slaney, Col. W. Robertson, J. P. B.
Robinson, B.
Kerans, F. H Ross, A. H.
King, H. S. Round, J.
Knightley, Sir R. Russell, Sir G.
Knowles, L. Russell, T. W.
Lafone, A. Saunderson, Col. E. J.
Lambert, C. Shaw-Stewart, M. H.
Laurie, Colonel R. P. Sidebotham, J. W.
Lawrance, J. C. Sidebottom, T. H.
Lawrence, W. F. Sidebottom, W.
Lechmere, Sir E. A. H. Smith, right hon. W. H.
Lees, E.
Legh, T. W. Smith, A.
Leighton, S. Spencer, J. E.
Lennox, Lord W. C. Gordon- Stanhope, rt. hon. E.
Stanley, E. J.
Llewellyn, E. H. Stephens, H. C.
Long, W. H. Stewart, M. J.
Lowther, hon. W. Stokes, G. G.
Lowther, J. W. Swetenham, E.
Macdonald, rt. hon. J. H. A. Talbot, J. G.
Tapling, T. K
Mackintosh, C. F. Temple, Sir R.
Maclean, J. M. Theobald, J.
Maclure, J. W. Thorburn, W.
Tollemache, H. J. Winn, hon. R.
Tomlinson, W. E. M. Wodehouse, E. R.
Townsend, F. Wolmer, Viscount
Trotter, Colonel H. J. Wood, N.
Vincent, C. E. H. Wortley, C. B. Stuart-
Walrond, Col. W. H. Wright, H. S.
Walsh, hon. A. H. J. Wroughton, P.
Webster, Sir R. E. Young, C. E. B.
Webster, R. G.
Weymouth, Viscount TELLERS.
Whitley, E. Baird, J. G. A.
Whitmore, C. A. Hozier, J. H. C.
Wilson, Sir S.
Abraham, W. (Glam.) Dillwyn, L. L.
Abraham, W. (Limerick, W.) Ellis, T. E.
Esmonde, Sir T. H. G.
Acland, A. H. D. Evans, F. H.
Allison, R. A. Evershed, S.
Anderson, C. H. Farquharson, Dr. R.
Asher, A. Fenwick, C.
Asquith, H. H. Ferguson, R. C. Munro-
Atherley-Jones, L. Finucane, J.
Austin, J. Firth, J. F. B.
Balfour, rt. hon. J. B. Flower, C.
Barbour, W. B. Flynn, J. C.
Barran, T. Foley, P. J.
Barry, J. Foster, Sir W. B.
Bass, H. Fox, Dr. J. F.
Beaumont, H. F. Fry, T.
Bickford-Smith, W. Fuller, G. P.
Biggar, J. G. Gaskell, C. G. Milnes-
Bolton, J. C. Gilhooly, J.
Bradlaugh, C. Gill, T. P.
Bright, W. L. Gladstone, H. J.
Brown, A. L. Gourley, E. T.
Bruce, hon. R. P. Graham, R. C.
Brunner, J. T. Grey, Sir E.
Bryce, J. Gully, W. C.
Buchanan, T. R. Haldane, R. B.
Burt, T. Hanbury-Tracy, hon. F. S. A.
Buxton, S. C.
Byrne, G. M. Harcourt, rt. hon. Sir W. G. V. V.
Caine, W. S.
Cameron, J. M Harrington, E.
Campbell, Sir G. Harrington, T. C.
Campbell-Bannerman, right hon. H. Harris, M.
Hayden, L. P.
Carew, J. L. Hayne, G. Seale-
Causton, R. K. Healy, H.
Chamberlain, rt. hn. J. Healy, T. M.
Chance, P. A. Holden, I.
Clancy, J. J. Hooper, J.
Clark, Dr. G. B. Howell, G.
Cobb, H. P. Hunter, W. A.
Commins, A. Illingworth, A.
Conway, H. Jacoby, J. A.
Conybeare, C. A. V James, hon. W. H.
Corbet, W. J. Joicey, J.
Corbett, A. C. Jordan, J.
Cossham, H. Kenny, M J.
Cox, J. R. Kilbride, D.
Cozens-Hardy, H. H. Lane, W. J.
Craig, J. Lawson, Sir W.
Craven, J. Lawson, H. L. W.
Crawford, D. Leake, R.
Cremer, W. R. Lewis, T. P.
Crilly, D. Lyell, L.
Crossley, E. Macdonald, W. A.
Davies, W. Mac Neill, J. G. S.
Deasy, J. M'Arthur, A.
Dickson, T. A. M'Arthur, W. A.
M'Carthy, J. Richard, H.
M'Carthy, J. H. Roberts, J.
M'Donald, P. Roberts, J. B.
M'Ewan, W. Roe, T.
Mahony, P. Roscoe, Sir H. E.
Maitland, W. F. Rowlands, W. B.
Marjoribanks, rt. hn. E. Rowntree, J.
Marum, E. M. Russell, Sir C.
Mayne, T. Samuelson, Sir B.
Menzies, R. S. Samuelson, G. B.
Molloy, B. C. Schwann, C. E.
Morgan, rt. hon. G. O. Sexton, T.
Morgan, O. V. Shaw, T.
Morley, A. Sheehan, J. D.
Mundella, rt. hn. A. J. Sheehy, D.
Nolan, Colonel J. P. Sheil, E.
Nolan, J. Sinclair, J.
O'Brien, J. F. X. Stack, J.
O'Brien, P. J. Stevenson, F. S.
O'Brien, W. Stevenson. J. C.
O'Connor, A. Stewart, H.
O'Connor, J. Stuart, J.
O'Connor, T. P. Sullivan, D.
O'Hanlon, T. Sullivan, T. D.
O'Hea, P. Summers, W.
Parker, C. S. Sutherland, A.
Parnell, C. S. Talbot, C. R. M.
Paulton, J. M. Tanner, C. K.
Pease, H. F. Thomas, D. A.
Pickard, B. Trevelyan, right hon. Sir G. O.
Pickersgill, E. H.
Pinkerton, J. Tuite, J.
Plowden, Sir W. C. Vivian, Sir H. H.
Portman, hon. E. B. Wallace, R.
Potter, T. B. Wardle, H.
Powell, W. R. H. Warmington, C. M.
Power, P. J. Watt, H.
Power, R. Wayman, T.
Priestley, B. Will, J. S.
Provand, A. D. Williams, A. J.
Pugh, D. Williamson, S.
Pyne, J. D. Wilson, C. H.
Quinn, T. Wilson, I.
Randell, D. Winterbotham, A. B.
Rathbone, W. Woodall, W.
Redmond, W. H. K. Woodhead, J.
Reed, Sir E. J. Wright, C.
Reid, R. T. TELLERS,
Rendel, S. Cameron, C.
Reynolds, W. J. Esslemont, P.

Motion, "That Mr. Speaker do now leave the Chair,"withdrawn.

SUPPLY—Committee upon Monday next.

It being One of the clock a.m., Mr. Speaker adjourned the House, without Question put, till Monday next.