§ This being the day announced for the prorogation of Parliament by the Queen in Person, the usual arrangements were made within the House for the reception of Her Majesty.
§ The Queen entered the House, attended by the Great Officers of State, shortly before two o'clock, and being seated on the Throne, directed the Gentleman Usher of the Black Rod, through the Lord Chamberlain, to command the attendance of the Commons.
, accompanied by a great number of the Commons appeared at the Bar, and addressed Her Majesty as follows:—
§ "Most Gracious Sovereign—We, your Majesty's loyal subjects, the Commons of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland in Parliament assembled, attend your Majesty with the concluding Bill of Supply for the present year.
§ "The Session we are about to close has been rendered unusually laborious, by the rapid development of private enterprise, in extending the railway communications of the Kingdom. We anticipate the most beneficial results from the facilities thus afforded to the internal trade of the country; and we havedevoted much time and labour to the legislation requisite for the construction and regulation of these important works, notwithstanding the various measures of great public interest which demanded our attentive consideration.
§ "Your Majesty was graciously pleased to intimate to us at the commencement of the Session, that your Majesty had carried into effect, in the spirit in which it was conceived, the Act for the more effectual application of Charitable Donations and Bequests. In the same spirit we have continued to legislate for Ireland; and in making a further grant for the endowment 1549 of Maynooth, and in providing the means of academical instruction, we have shown due regard to the peculiar circumstances of that part of the United Kingdom, and the religious feelings of the majority of its inhabitants; and we believe that the encouragement afforded by this and former Parliaments to the education of the people, has placed the future improvement and prosperity of Ireland on a sure and lasting foundation.
§ "Our attention has been no less anxiously directed to the condition of the destitute poor of Scotland; and, assisted by the information which your Majesty has directed to be laid before us, we have made such amendments in the law as will provide for the more effectual relief of the poor, and for a better system of parochial management under the control of a general Board of Supervision.
§ "We have endeavoured, by facilitating the drainage of lands and the enclosure of commons, to encourage agricultural improvement and the beneficial employment of labour in the rural districts. And we advert with peculiar satisfaction to the measures which have been adopted for the further security and extension of the trade and commerce of the country.
§ "The laws passed in a former Session for regulating the banking establishments of England have been applied with certain requisite modifications to Scotland and Ireland. The operations of trade have been simplified and rendered more secure by the abolition of the duties on many articles of import, and by the consolidation of the Customs laws.
§ "The duties on sugar have been so far modified and reduced as materially to affect its price and increase its consumption; and the important staple manufacture of glass has been relieved altogether from fiscal charge and the inconvenience and expense of Excise regulations.
§ "To meet the deficiency in the Revenue caused by these alterations of the Tariff, 1550 we have deemed it indispensably necessary to continue for a further period the tax upon income; and we have been thereby enabled, in accordance with your Majesty's suggestion, to add to the efficiency of the naval service, and to afford adequate protection to our commerce.
§ "It has been my duty thus briefly to lay before your Majesty some of the most prominent measures of the Session. We believe them to be well calculated, under the blessing of Providence, to increase the prosperity of the country, and to promote the welfare and happiness of all classes of your Majesty's subjects: and, if we have felt ourselves reluctantly compelled to renew a tax usually resorted to under the pressure of an expensive war, we have at least the satisfaction of reflecting that we have reimposed it for no purpose of aggrandizement or of conquest; but that we might be enabled, without endangering public credit, to relax those restrictions which press upon our domestic industry, to extend our commercial relations, and to share the blessings of peace with all the nations of the world."
§ The Royal Assent was then given, in the usual form, to the Exchequer Bills Bill, the Consolidated Fund (Appropriation) Bill, the Small Debts Bill, the Silk Weavers Bill, the Epping Railway Bill, the Bristol Parochial Rates Bill, and the Marquess of Westminster's Estate Bill.
§ Her Majesty was then pleased to make the following Most Gracious Speech to both Houses of Parliament:—
§ "My Lords, and Gentlemen,
§ "I rejoice that the State of Public Business enables Me to release you from further Attendance in Parliament.
§ "In closing this laborious Session, I must express to you My warm Acknowledgments for the Zeal and Assiduity with which you have applied yourselves to the Consideration of 1551 many Subjects deeply affecting the Public Welfare.
§ "I have given My cordial Assent to the Bills which you presented to Me for remitting the Duties on many Articles of Import, and for removing Restrictions on the free Application of Capital and Skill to certain Branches of our Manufactures.
§ "The Reduction of Taxation will necessarily cause an immediate Loss of Revenue, but I trust that its Effect in stimulating Commercial Enterprize and enlarging the Means of Consumption will ultimately provide an ample Compensation for any temporary Sacrifice.
§ "I have witnessed with peculiar Satisfaction the unremitting Attention which you have bestowed on the Measures recommended by Me to your Consideration at the Commencement of the Session, for improving and extending the Means of Academical Education in Ireland.
§ "You may rely upon My Determination to carry those Measures into execution in the Manner best calculated to inspire Confidence in the Institutions which have received your Sanction, and to give Effect to your earnest Desire to promote the Welfare of that Part of My Dominions.
§ "From all Foreign Powers, I continue to receive Assurances of their friendly Disposition towards this Country.
§ The Convention which I have recently concluded with the King of the French, for the more effectual Suppression of the Slave Trade, will, I trust, by establishing a cordial and active Co-operation between the Two Powers, afford a better prospect than has hitherto existed of complete Success 1552 in the Attainment of an Object for which this Country has made so many Sacrifices.
§ "Gentlemen of the House of Commons,
§ "I thank you for the Liberality with which you have voted the Supplies for the Service of the current Year.
§ "My Lords, and Gentlemen,
§ "On your Return to your several Counties, Duties will devolve upon you scarcely less important than those from the Performance of which I now relieve you.
§ "I feel assured that you will promote and confirm, by your Influence and Example, that Spirit of Loyalty and Contentment which you will find generally prevalent throughout the Country.
§ "In the Discharge of all the Functions intrusted to you for the Public Welfare, you may confidently rely on My cordial Support; and I implore the Blessing of Divine Providence on our united Efforts to encourage the Industry and increase the Comforts of My People, and to inculcate those Religious and Moral Principles which are the surest Foundation of our Security and Happiness."
Then the Lord Chancellor
, by Her Majesty's Command, said—It is Her Majesty's royal Will and Pleasure that the present Parliament be prorogued to Thursday, the Second Day of October next, and this Parliament is accordingly prorogued to Thursday, the Second Day of October next.
§ Her Majesty then rose from the Throne, and left the House attended in the same manner as upon Her entry.