§ RESIGNATION OF THE EARL OF ELLENDOROUGH.
§ TRE MARQUESS OF LANSDOWNE
(who was very imperfectly heard). My Lords, I wish to claim your indulgence for a few minutes, while I correct an accidental error, whether material or immaterial, in a statement I made last night, into which I was led by circumstances which it is easy to explain. When I came down to the House yesterday, I was not at all aware that it was likely there would be any conversation with respect to that particular subject which was brought under the notice of your Lordships. I was, however, induced, in consequence of the discussion which was raised, to state to my noble Friend near me (Earl Granville) the substance of some information which I had received in the course of a conversation which I had had that morning with my right hon. Friend the late President of the Board of Control. I was quite correct in saying that my right hon. Friend has received a private Letter from Lord Canning, in which that noble Lord expresses great anxiety to furnish an explanation of the grounds on which he had issued the Proclamation which has since been the subject of so much consideration and discussion. I certainly was under the impression, from the casual conversation I had had with my right hon. Friend, that the Letter had not been received before both Houses of Parliament had been made acquainted with the Proclamation of Lord Canning, as well as with the censure of that Proclamation which had been sent out by Her Majesty's Government. That, however, I find to be inaccurate. I was led into the error by supposing that what my right hon. Friend said in reference to that point was that he had not communicated to the Government the private Letter he had received from Lord Canning, because he had thought there could be no use in his doing so after the announcement which had been made to the two Houses of Parliament. But I have since found that what my right hon. Friend said was that there would be no use in communicating the Letter after that censure of Lord Canning's policy had gone out to India. I do not myself see any material difference between these two statements, but I have thought it right to put your Lordships in possession of the precise facts of the case. 405 I wish to add, in anticipation of any question which might naturally be put to me upon this subject, that no private communication whatever relating to public business received from Lord Canning by my right hon. Friend the late President of the Board of Control since he left office with the exception of this Letter, which, in the midst of a few sentences relating to private matters, contains that single sentence of a public character, expressing the regret which he felt that the extreme pressure of business prevented him from giving the explanation which he was anxious to afford of the grounds on which his Proclamation was issued. Owing to the change of Government my right hon. Friend received that Letter without the Proclamation; and that was all the information which reached him upon the subject.
§ THE EARL OF DERBY
I am sure no one in the House or out of it ever suspected for a single moment that the noble Marquess would make a statement which he did not believe to be entirely correct. But the noble Marquess has now clearly pointed out the amount of inaccuracy in the statement which he made. I must, however, take the liberty of remarking that he has now made a considerable difference in the state of the case; because his statement last night was, that the private note promising an explanation on the part of Lord Canning was not received until after the communication had been made to Parliament of the answer to the Proclamation; but the noble Marquess has now admitted that he was in error; but he has stopped short in his revelations, for he has not told us what was the precise date at which the private note was received from Mr. Vernon Smith.
§ THE MARQUESS OF LANSDOWNE
Yes, I have. I have stated that it was not received until after the censure of the Earl of Ellenborough had been sent out—namely, on the 19th of April; and, consequently, if it were of any importance, it could have had no effect upon the sending out of that censure.
§ THE EARL OF DERBY
I am very glad that the noble Marquess has at last given us the precise date, because if a communication had been made to my noble Friend the President of the Board of Control on the 19th of April, it would have been in ample time to produce any effect on his mind which might naturally be produced by the knowledge of that note—and for this reason, for although that 406 which the noble Marquess called a censure —and it certainly was a censure upon the Proclamation—was dated on the 19th of April, it was not sent out until the 26th of April; and consequently, if Mr. Vernon Smith had intimated to the Board of Control, at the time that he received that private note—Lord Canning having written that private note to Mr. Vernon Smith under the impression that he was the person who would receive it at the same time with the Proclamation—that the Governor General intended to give those explanations with regard to the Proclamation which he felt it expedient should be given, the effect intended by Lord Canning in writing the Letter would have been produced, and my noble Friend would not have been led to give a premature condemnation of the Proclamation, when the Governor General himself, in a private Letter, asked for time for consideration ["No, no!"] As I understood, certainly, Lord Canning stated in that note he would take the opportunity of forwarding an explanation by the next mail. My noble Friend near me (the Earl of Malmesbury) remarked with great truth last night that the conduct of my noble Friend (the late Secretary for Foreign Affairs) presented a very marked contrast to the course of proceeding taken by the late President of the Board of Control. My noble Friend the late Secretary for Foreign Affairs knows well that in all matters of great importance there are sent over frequently, by persons in the confidence of the Crown employed abroad, private letters, which accompany the public despatches, and that those private letters are of the utmost importance to understanding the real meaning and intention of those despatches. My noble Friend opposite received many such letters, and I venture to say—at least, I believe—there is not one which he has not in the frankest and fairest manner communicated to my noble Friend (the Earl of Malmesbury) with a view to put him in possession of the whole state of the case. I am unwilling to impute to Mr. Vernon Smith any other reason for his conduct than that he was not aware of the ordinary course of proceeding; but I may be permitted to say that such a departure from the ordinary course is neither fair for the Government at home, nor for the interest of those employed by Her Majesty's Government abroad. I say it was the bounden duty of Mr. Vernon Smith, if he received a private letter addressed to him 407 on the supposition that he still filled the office of President of the Board of Control, and that letter contained an expression by the Governor General of his regret that he was unable by that mail to forward an explanation of the Proclamation—I say it was his bounden duty not to have permitted his successor at the Board of Control to remain in ignorance of that Letter —and I say further, ou the statement of the noble Marquess himself, that if he had so communicated it, one week would have been given to Her Majesty's Government to decide what effect the receipt of that note would have upon the reply which was to be sent out to the Governor General.
§ EARL GRANVILLE
My Lords, I am not going to argue in any way against the principle which has just been laid down by my noble Friend. It is manifestly most important—and more particularly at a period when changes of Government take place more rapidly than they did in former times —that one who lately quitted office should afford to his successor every explanation in his power with respect to the course of public affairs; and I am glad to find that an ample acknowledgment has been made of the mode in which such explanations have been given by my noble Friend who lately presided over the Foreign Office (the Earl of Clarendon.) I think I can also feel assured that I shall receive for myself the testimony of my noble Friend opposite (the Earl of Hardwicke), that I have given him all the information which I could furnish upon the much less important subjects which came within my province; and I am bound to add also that no one ever more fairly discharged that duty than my noble Friend the present President of the Board of Control, who at all times afforded to the late Government valuable information upon matters of great public importance. I was quite prepared to follow his example, although I was unable to do so as completely as I wished. The noble Earl will remember that I communicated to him the contents of a letter which had reached me about the same time Mr. Vernon Smith received his communication from Lord Canning.
§ EARL GRANVILLE
It was a private letter, containing three or four passages of public interest, which I sought to communicate to him by reading them to him in the lobby of the House. I am bound, 408 however, to add that I did not read to the noble Earl all that I had intended to read; because after I had gone through a portion of the communication the noble Earl entered into so interesting but at the same time so long an account of his view of the state of affairs in India at that moment, that after having made one or two ineffectual attempts to obtain a hearing for the purpose of finishing the information I had to offer I put the letter in my pocket and gave the matter up in despair. As I understand the present case, the letter addressed to Mr. Vernon Smith reached his residence while he was engaged in Ireland in a matter very interesting to himself and to the Lord Lieutenant of that country. He received it on his return to London, where it had been waiting for him. In the middle of that letter there was a paragraph—I do not profess to give the exact words—to the effect that the writer, Lord Canning, had sent home the draft of a Proclamation—not a Proclamation which he had issued, but the draft of a Proclamation which he meant to issue, and that he should have liked to be able to send an explanation with it by that mail, but that he was prevented by a pressure of business from carrying that wish into effect. Now, could Mr. Vernon Smith imagine, that within an hour of the receipt of this intended Proclamation there was to be written one of the strongest censures that had ever been pronounced on the policy of a public man? I admit that I think it would have been better to have given even that meagre information to the Government; but we must not wonder if Mr. Vernon Smith did not think it necessary to make to his successor in office a communication in which he could have stated nothing more than this: "I understand you have received a copy of an intended Proclamation from Lord Canning; he would have sent an explanatory statement with respect to it if he had time, but he was obliged, from pressure of business, to reserve his explanation until the next mail. I have learnt these facts from a private letter from him which reached my residence while I was absent from London." What has happened is, that Lord Canning, not having had time to send that explanation with the draught of his Proclamation, has deferred it until he was able to send the modified Proclamation which he actually issued; and I have no doubt but that both these documents will be received by the noble Earl opposite in the course of time.
§ THE EARL OF ELLENBOROUGH
The Letter to which the noble Earl alludes, enclosing the Proclamation, was received on the 12th of April—the answer was not written until the 18th of April—it was dated April 19, and was not sent until the 26th of April. Therefore, my Lords, it cannot be said there was not ample time for consideration as to what the Letter reflecting on the Proclamation should contain, and also for further deliberation after it was written, as has been shown by my noble Friend near me. I say, my Lords, that the more I reflect, the more strongly am I convinced, that it was absolutely necessary that the Letter should be sent as it was originally written. But what I am accused of is not the writing of that Letter—I have heard no one find fault with the Letter—no one has attempted to defend the confiscation of the proprietary rights of the Native landholders in Oude—the only question raised is, was it or was it not right to publish that Letter which was written. I say no one attempts to defend the confiscation of the rights of the Native proprietors of Oude; that I repeat, because as I understand the Resolution to be moved on Friday it relates to the publication of the Letter, and to that question alone. Now, my Lords, the publication of that Letter is an act as wholly mine as the writing was. I take upon myself the whole responsibility, and I will tell your Lordships how it it happened that that publication took place. My Lords, some time before I had written a Letter, which was subsequently laid upon the table—a Secret Letter, written in anticipation of the capture of Lucknow, and to be published as soon as we were in possession of Lucknow—in which I directed that the Government of India, having exhibited their strength, and being in possession of the place, should temper justice with generosity, should proclaim an amnesty, disarm the people, and, wherever the amnesty was proclaimed, should establish as soon as possible the ordinary administration of the laws. My Lords, I apprehended that there would be obstruction to the Government in the execution of these orders from subordinate officers, maddened, as I expressed it, by the scenes which they had recently witnessed, and I desired the Government to persevere in doing what they thought right; and I said that acting in that spirit they would have the unqualified support of the Government. Soon after, my Lords, I received, this Proclamation, of which the only important point to notice is the confiscation— 410 [Earl GRANVILLE interposed a remark which was not heard.] How was it possible to communicate by electric telegraph? The fact is, that soon after the Letter to which I have referred was published here, I received the Proclamation, which is in direct contradiction to the principles laid down in the Letter, of which the noble Earl opposite approves. Surely the confiscation of the whole proprietary rights of the landholders of Oude is in direct opposition to the spirit of clemency, and inconsistent with an amnesty; it is persecution after defeat—it is subversive of the principles which had been laid down in our first Letter—it was contrary to the feelings of the Government, and contrary to the principles upon which they were determined to act. When I read that Proclamation, I felt it to be my duty at once to express, as I did express, my own sentiments, and these were adopted by my noble Friends. I think I should have been unworthy of a seat in your Lordships' House if I acted otherwise. But I felt, at the same time, that if that Proclamation were really published as it stood before me, it was quite impossible that my Letter with regard to it could be withheld from the public. I knew that the moment that Proclamation became known questions would be put in Parliament, both in this and in the other House, to which answers must be given, which answers could not be satisfactory without the production of this Letter, which therefore we could not resist. My Lords, I desired its publication—and I will tell you upon what grounds. Having told the Government of India that in order to remove all obstructions that might be raised against a merciful policy by subordinate officers, I was determined to support it in carrying out the principle of clemency—I felt that it was necessary—that it should be known to the governors as well as the governed that the Cabinet were resolved to enforce that system against all persons, be they whom they might. I felt, and I still feel, that this letter was a message of peace to the people of India. I knew I was laying down a principle which, if it were not so laid down, never would be generally adopted in that country. I knew that it would offer conciliation to those who were living in dread of retribution from our power. I was determined to compel all those in office in India to act in the spirit in which that letter was written; and it was for the sake of the public peace and welfare 411 of India that I desired that Letter should go forth. But as regards the giving of publicity to that Letter, I take upon myself the whole responsibility. My Lords. I knew what it was right to do, and I did it—I did it at once. Perhaps I ought to have taken that Letter to the Cabinet and asked the opinion of all my colleagues before I decided on making it public; that might have been the right course; but that course I did not adopt, and therefore to accuse my colleagues of any misconduct with regard to its publication would be unfair and unjust, since I and I alone am responsible. The act of publication was mine alone, and let me alone bear whatever censure may be attributed to the act of publication. I say this, because I think it is an explanation due to my colleagues in this and in the other House of Parliament. But now I have to consider, under these circumstances, what is my duty, not only to my colleagues, but what is due to the people of India. My Lords, I have endeavoured to serve the people of India as much out of office as in office for nearly thirty years. My most earnest and anxious exertions in public life have been used with a view to their welfare and happiness, and I will not do any act towards the close of my public life which may possibly injure their interests. My Lords, this question will be viewed differently in this country and in India. Here it is a question between one party and another—a question whether my noble Friends near me are to remain in office—or whether we are to submit to that to which we have an intuitive dislike—the Restoration. That, my Lords, is practically and really the question to be discussed before this and before the other House of Parliament. But I beg leave to remind your Lordships that the question which will be considered in India is a very different one. The question there will be understood to be between the conflicting principles of confiscation and of clemency; and, my Lords, I feel satisfied that, according as the decision of this and of the other House of Parliament may appear to be inclined towards the one or the other of these principles, there will be sown broadcast throughout India the seeds of permanent warfare, or the hope will be given of lasting reconciliation and peace. My Lords, I know well—however great the importance of the public question—no matter how great the interests involved—personal considerations will but too much sway the decisions of both Houses of Parliament. I have de- 412 termined, so far as I can, to remove those personal considerations. I am resolved, so far as I can effect it, that this question shall be considered on its own merits; and determined as I am that to the last moment of my life everything I do shall be to promote the peace and welfare of India, I have to-day tendered to Her Majesty my resignation, and it has been accepted.
§ EARL GREY
The question whether it was proper or not to publish the despatch which the noble Earl sent out to India will come regularly before the House on a subsequent day, and it would be inconvenient for me now to anticipate the discussion which will then arise; but I must protest against the fairness of discussing at this moment the question whether the Proclamation of Lord Canning was right or wrong, and I protest against it going out to the country that this is a question between the principle of confiscation and the principle of clemency. I deny that that is an accurate version of Lord Canning's Proclamation; but I will not be dragged into a course so unfair towards Lord Canning as to discuss the grounds on which he issued the Proclamation, and the policy and justice of it, when we are still totally ignorant of the reasons which he himself is prepared to assign for the isssue of it. It is this, and this only, I wish to impress on your Lordships, namely, that we are bound to reserve our judgment altogether on the question of the Proclamation. As far as I can at present judge, I might be inclined to disapprove the Proclamation; but I know that men, far more intimately acquainted than I am with the state of India, have arrived at a different conclusion, and believe the Proclamation, even with the present information they possess respecting it, to be right. That being the case, it is fair for us, on the commonest principles of justice, to suspend our judgment till we know Lord Canning's reasons for it. I only wish to add one word more. I cannot help thinking that a great deal more is made of the non-communication by Mr. Vernon Smith of a private letter than it deserves. Because, what really is the fact? My right hon. Friend received a letter announcing that the Governor General had not had time to write an explanation on the subject of his Proclamation. Mr. Vernon Smith did not know that Proclamation or its importance; and, though it is greatly to be regretted that he did not communicate the letter to the Government, yet it was quite natural that 413 he should not have done so, and in point of fact the Government would have learned nothing from its communication but what they ought to have known without. The Government received the draught of an intended Proclamation, but they had not received the Proclamation as issued. Now we know that the most important State papers frequently undergo alteration between the time of their preparation and issue. We also know that the proper occasion for sending a full explanation of the views of the Indian Government in issuing so important a document is when they transmitted to England the Proclamation as issued, and informed the Home Government that it had been issued. Until the Home Government received a despatch informing them that the Proclamation had been actually issued, I say that, in the absence of any private letter, we are bound to presume that in due time some explanation will arrive. Therefore, in point of fact, the non-communication of the private letter which has been referred to left the Government in ignorance of nothing which they were not bound to know without seeing that private letter.
§ THE EARL OF DERBY
I will not enter into any discussion of the merits of the Proclamation either as drawn up in the first instance or as subsequently published; but I must say, in answer to the statement that the Government were bound, after receiving the Proclamation as intended to be issued, to wait before making any explanation of their opinions until it was actually received as published, that I altogether dissent from that doctrine.
§ THE EARL OF DERBY
The fault which, I apprehend, is found with the Government is that, on receiving the Proclamation intended to be published, they expressed in a Secret Letter to the Governor General their disapproval of it; and, without intending to discuss the Proclamation, I must say that the Government were undoubtedly of opinion that the issue of a proclamation in which confiscation was made the general rule would produce the most dangerous consequences, driving many to despair and inducing others to combine.
§ EARL GRANVILLE
rose to order: When the noble Earl rose, after the important declaration made by his noble Colleague, I thought he was going to give some explanation of a personal character, which I am sure your Lordships would have listened to with attention; but when the noble Earl proceeds to discuss a matter which we have already said we do not intend to argue at this time, and to make a speech applicable to a Motion which is to come on towards the end of the week, I have a right to say the nobe Earl is not in order—especially as he has already spoken.
THE MARQUESS OF SALISBURY
rose to move the adjournment of the House, in order to allow the Earl of Derby to address their Lordships.
§ THE EARL OF ELLENBOROUGH
said, he would save the necessity for a Motion of adjournment by moving that the order of the day for the second reading of the Chief Justice of Bombay Bill be discharged.
§ THE EARL OF DERBY
I certainly was anxious after the statement made by my noble Friend (the Earl of Ellenborough) to take an opportunity of expressing the coincidence of my concurrence, as far as I could concur with him, in the course he has adopted, and of explaining that point on which I am unable wholly to agree with him, I wish also to bear testimony to the manly and generous manner in which my noble Friend, if he has committed any indiscretion, has more than atoned for that indiscretion, and done himself infinite honour. I was proceeding to answer some observations which had been made on the other side. I thought it was made a matter of complaint against us that, without waiting for explanations from the Governor General, we hastened to express our disapproval of the Proclamation about to be issued. I say, my Lords, that if we did disapprove, as was certainly the case, the tenour of that Proclamation, and feared the effect it would have upon the population of India, it was our bounden duty not to lose a single mail in expressing to the Governor General our apprehensions as to the consequences which might ensue. Such was the object of the despatch sent out by my noble Friend the President of the Board of Control, on the 26th of April; and I still think it is deeply to be regretted that between the 19th and the 26th of 415 April, my noble Friend was not informed that explanations of the intended Proclamation might be expected to arrive by an early mail. But your Lordships must bear in mind that the despatch sent out on the 26th was intended to be, and was, a Secret Despatch. It communicated the opinion of the Government to the Governor General, and we hoped it would be in time to alter the determination to which he had come; but, after all, it did not contain a distinct injunction to Lord Canning to recall or revoke his Proclamation. Far from it. It simply expressed our anxious hope, that in carrying into effect the doctrines put forth in his Proclamation, he would find it necessary and proper to mitigate their strictness and rigour. Although the Proclamation, as we have since received it, does not go the length which I might desire in that sense, yet undoubtedly one paragraph, which has been inserted since the receipt of the copy to which the despatch of my noble Friend the President of the Board of Control applied, does materially modify the terms of the original Proclamation.
§ THE EARL OF DERBY
My noble Friend says, not with regard to confiscation, but I hope and believe it must be the intention of the Governor General, although unfortunately he lays down confiscation as a rule, to make large exceptions, for the purpose not only of freeing further penalties, but of restoring lands and property to those who may have forfeited them by their recent conduct. The despatch sent out on the 26th of April, as I said before, was a Secret Despatch. When the Proclamation finally came home and was made known through the public journals, it excited considerable attention and animadversion. It was certain that some Questions would be put respecting it in Parliament, and it was necessary that some step should be decided on. I will now, my Lords—although it is not strictly regular to refer to the precise course taken in "another place"—call to your attention what occurred. My right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer arrived late in the House that day. A Question, of which no notice had been given, was immediately asked as to whether the Proclamation had been received, whether any despatch had been written in answer to it, and whether we were prepared to lay that despatch upon 416 the table of the House. Without any communication with the Chancellor of the Exchequer, or with any other person in either House of Parliament, unfortunately, as I think, the Secretary to the Board of Control (Mr. Baillie) rose, and at once stated that a despatch had been sent out, and would be laid on the table. Now, I concur with my noble Friend the President of the Board of Control, in thinking that sooner or later it was indispensable that that despatch should be produced. Questions must have been asked as to whether such a despatch had been sent, and whether we approved the policy indicated in the Proclamation; and if the subject had given rise to discussions, we should have been expected to show the terms in which we had written to the Governor General. But I regret—and I expressed my regret on the following day—that that premature announcement should have been made; and I recollect that upon that occasion a noble Earl opposite drew attention to the fact that, instead of defending the publication of the despatch, I confined my observations to the policy expressed in it. That is perfectly true. I felt then, as I feel now, that that hasty and immediate announcement that the Government were prepared to publish the despatch—an announcement made without communication with any Member of the Government—was an act of imprudence, and that the results of the publication of the despatch would be unfortunate. I was of that opinion then; I am of that opinion now; and my noble Friend near me, (the Earl of Ellenborough) with that candour, frankness, and honesty which so eminently upon all occasions characterize his conduct, comes forward and states that that act was his and his alone, and that he and he only ought to be responsible for the consequences. There is nothing, my Lords, so painful to my feelings as the possibility of being suspected for any purposes of sacrificing a colleague; and I know not that I have ever in my life felt deeper pain than when I received from my noble Friend, not a tender of his resignation, but a copy of a letter in which he had already submitted his resignation to Her Majesty. I was bound to consider not private and personal feelings only, but what was due to the great interests of the country. I was bound to consider whether it was desirable that the Government should stake their existence as a Government upon their liability for an act of 417 which they were not in the slightest degree cognizant—whether they should take upon themselves the defence of that which they felt they could not wholly defend; or whether they should accept the noble self-sacrifice of my noble Friend, and thereby through his generosity allow his colleagues to have justice done to them. The conclusion to which I came,—and I never felt greater pain than when I arrived at that determination,—was that, in justice to the public interests, it was my bounden duty to accept the self-sacrifice of my noble Friend; and, painful as I felt it to be to separate from one for whom personally I entertain the highest respect, whose knowledge of Indian subjects, whose long experience, whose devotedness to the cause of India, and whose entire abnegation of all selfish feelings for the promotion of the public welfare render him an invaluable colleague, and whose counsel on Indian affairs is of inestimable value, and whose withdrawal could not but be regarded as a great loss to the Cabinet of Her Majesty, I yet felt bound by still stronger considerations, though with the deepest pain, to concur in the suggestion of my noble Friend that his resignation should be received. I have now made all the observations which I think it necessary to address to your Lordships upon the present occasion. I will admit to the noble Earl opposite that this is not the time to discuss the policy of the Proclamation of Lord Canning, either as it was intended to be issued, or as it may hereafter be proved to have been issued. I regret with him the premature publication of a document which, I think, ought not to have been so soon laid before the public, though sooner or later it must have been submitted to Parliament. Still, feeling myself unable to defend the hasty promulgation of that despatch, I have been, with the greatest reluctance, compelled to accept the resignation of my noble Friend near me; but is doing so I feel it due to myself, and due to my colleagues, and due to him to say, that we separate from him as colleagues,—I trust we shall never separate front him as friends, —with the deepest and sincerest regret for his loss, and with an earnest hope that we may still have the benefit of his disinterested and impartial advice in our efforts to settle the great problem of the government of India.
§ EARL GRANVILLE
I shall trouble your Lordships with only a few observations. I was certainly not prepared for the important announcement made by the President of the Board of Control in a statement which, as truly remarked by the noble Earl who has just spoken, was most honourable and straightforward; and, however widely we may differ upon points of policy. I cannot but feel that a large portion of the eulogy to which your Lordships have listened is well deserved. How far the resignation of the President of the Board of Control may affect the position of his colleagues I am not prepared to say. My object in rising is simply to call attention to a small matter of fact upon which some doubt still seems to rest. The noble Earl at the head of the Government has stated that the question as to the Proclamation in the House of Commons was asked without any notice having been given, and that it was answered by the Secretary to the Board of Control without previous communication with any other Member of the Government. Now, what I want to ask is—and the fact must surely be known to the noble Earl—whether Mr. Baillie was really not aware that a question would be put to him, and whether he gave his answer without knowing what were the wishes of his chief and his colleagues as to dealing with the subject of the question?
§ THE EARL OF DERBY
My noble Friend (the Earl of Ellenborough) has stated distinctly that Mr. Baillie gave the answer by his authority and on his responsibility, without the knowledge of any other Member of the Cabinet. For myself, I had not the slightest idea that that question, or any other question upon that subject, was going to be put.
§ EARL GRANVILLE
It has been stated that the question was put without previous notice. Mr. Baillie must have had notice of it, or how could he have communicated with the noble Earl upon the subject?