HL Deb 17 July 1846 vol 87 cc1221-3

moved the Third Reading of these Bills.


did not rise to oppose this Bill being read a third time, after the decision to which their Lordships had come on the preceding evening; but he must say that that decision was anything but satisfactory to him. He thought it was establishing a dangerous precedent, and he also thought that the ground that the proposition was opposed elsewhere was not tenable. He did not see why officers of the army were not to be rewarded quite in the same way as civilians. There was one matter connected with this subject which, he owned, had given him considerable regret, and that was, that more notice had not been taken of the splendid services of Sir Charles Napier. He considered that that individual had shown as much military knowledge, bravery, and gallantry as any officer that had served in that country. He fought two great battles, and entirely conquered Scinde; and he had not only conquered Scinde, but had brought into subjection those tribes which it had been thought impossible to dislodge from their fastnesses. After a great deal of hard work and privation, he had succeeded in subjecting them; and then he had displayed his efficiency as a civil governor by bringing them down, and making them cultivate the land. He had induced them to give up their predatory habits, and they were now useful members of society. He (the Duke of Richmond) did not know the reason why some notice had not been taken of the services of this officer, who had shown himself to be so gallant, who had conciliated the affections of the whole of the soldiery under his command, and who was, he believed, beloved even by the people whom he had conquered. He thought that individual should have received greater marks of their approbation of his conduct than the thanks of Parliament which had been voted to him.


observed, that having already expressed most unreservedly his concurrence in the views of the noble Duke (the Duke of Richmond) with respect to the annuities proposed to be given to Lord Hardinge and Lord Gough, it was unnecessary that he should say more on the subject at present; but he could not avoid offering a remark in reference to the observation which had just fallen from the same noble Duke respecting that illustrious man Sir Charles Napier. He believed that neither in this nor any other country did the history of war present to the notice of men a more gallant soldier or a more able commander than Sir Charles Napier. Not even in India, the land of battles, had gallantry more dauntless or military skill more admirable been displayed than were exhibited at the battles of Meanee and Hydrabad. His noble Friend, the noble Duke who now usually sat on the cross benches (the Duke of Wellington), had himself borne testimony to this fact; and he admitted that never in any engagement had any general been more prodigal of his person than Sir Charles Napier in the engagements in question. Not only had he shown himself a soldier of the most undaunted personal heroism, but he had achieved higher glory still, by displaying talents of generalship which it would be difficult to parallel, and a degree of strategetical skill which challenged the warmest admiration. It would be in vain to search our history, brilliant though it was in glorious exploits, for actions of military skill to transcend, he had almost said to match, those of Sir Charles Napier. No doubt it was a delicate matter to offer an observation on, but he must say he could not well derstand why services such as those of Sir Charles Napier should have been passed over with so little notice.


admitted the high claims which these great generals possessed on the gratitude of the Legislature and the public; but it was to be regretted that the nation did not appear to be sufficiently sensible of the depth and magnitude of the acknowledgments which were due to Divine Providence, to whose interposition all successes were to be attributed.

Bills read 3a. and passed.