§ THE FIRST LORD OF THE TREASURY (Mr. A. J. BALFOUR,) Manchester, E.
I have placed on the Notice Paper of the House, in language consecrated by the traditions of this House, some expression of the feeling with which we have received the dreadful news of the assassination of the King of Italy. I do not think the House will desire that I should endeavour to develop at length sentiments which seem to have received adequate expression in the very terms and framework of the resolution. Alas, Sir, we have seen too many of these dastardly crimes of recent years. I can remember in my own Parliamentary experience four other crimes 182 besides the one with which this resolution deals—the assassination of the Emperor of Russia, the assassination of President Garfield, the assassination of the President of the French Republic, and the assassination of the Empress of Austria; and we all have in our minds another attempt, happily unsuccessful, to assassinate the heir to our own Throne. They show how widespread as well as how irrational is this most cruel and most foolish of all forms of public crime. Sir, if anything could add to the feeling of indignation with which the civilised world received the news of yesterday, it is the reflection that the late King of Italy was from his very earliest youth associated with the building up of the independence and liberties of his country. As far back probably as his recollection went, he was nearly concerned in those great events which have produced the Italy of to-day. He never hesitated to risk his life, either in war or in peace, where the interests of his country were concerned, and it does seem to render this great tragedy even more tragic that such a sovereign should be marked out for the assassin's dagger. Sir, the King of Italy was not only a great patriot, but he was a great friend of this country. He and his people have through good report and through ill report been the faithful friends of Britain and of the British Empire, and for that reason we received with even an additional pang of sorrow, even an additional movement of indignation, the sad news of his untimely death. I think, Sir, that I need say no more to commend this Resolution to the unanimous consent of the House. It will be sufficient if I read its terms to express the universal feeling with which I am sure the House will adopt it—That an humble Address be presented to Her Majesty, to convey to Her Majesty the expression of the indignation and deep concern with which this House has learned the assassination of Her Majesty's ally, His Majesty the King of Italy and to pray Her Majesty that she will be graciously pleased to express to His Majesty the present King, on the part of her faithful Commons, their abhorrence of the crime, and their sympathy with the Royal Family of Italy, and with the Government and people of that country.
§ SIR H. CAMPBELL-BANNERMAN (Stirling Burghs)
I rise, Sir, for the purpose of seconding the motion which 183 has just been made by the Leader of the House. Sir, it is unnecessary for me to add anything to the well-chosen words in which he commended that motion to the acceptance of the House; but I am desirous, at least, of marking the unanimity with which the House agrees in the double sentiment of horror and indignation at the crime that has been committed, and of sympathy with the Royal Family, the Government, and the people of Italy. The friendship, as the right hon. Gentleman has said, between the British people and the Italian people is traditional; it is strong, it is unabated, and we hope and believe it is ineradicable; and while, on the one hand, there is no nation in the world that has taken a more cordial and sustained interest than we have in the creation of the new Italy, of the Italy of unity and independence, at the head of which the gallant house of Savoy has placed itself, on the other hand, we know, as the right hon. Gentleman again has said, that we have no greater well-wishers than we have in Italy, and that the Queen has had no firmer friend or more staunch ally than the monarch whose untimely end we are deploring, and his illustrious father who went before him. For these reasons I claim that the gloom that has fallen on Italy finds an echo in all our hearts, and by this message, simple method as it may appear, we, at least, show that we share to the full the horror and grief with which this abominable outrage has been received throughout the civilised world.
Resolved, nemine contradicente, That an humble Address be presented to Her Majesty, to convey to Her Majesty the expression of the indignation and deep concern with which this House has learned the assassination of Her Majesty's ally, His Majesty the King of Italy, and to pray Her Majesty that she will be graciously pleased to express to His Majesty the present King, on the part of her faithful Commons, their abhorrence of the crime, and their sympathy with the Royal Family of Italy, and with the Government and people of that country. —(Mr. A. J. Balfour.)
§ To be presented by Privy Councillors and Members of Her Majesty's Household.