HL Deb 21 June 1867 vol 188 cc245-60

Bill read 3a (according to Order.)


said, it would have been far better if this Bill had been allowed to pass in the judicious form in which it was presented when first introduced. Had it been so it would have found far more acceptance in the country than it can possibly find now. In order that the Bill might leave their Lordships' House in what he conceived to be a more worthy shape, he would call attention to the clause to which he took the greatest exception. There could be no doubt of the spiritual wants of the people, nor of the necessity which existed for strengthening the agency of the Church in its attempts to cope with it; and he was convinced that unless something more were done to amend existing state of things than was being done at present deplorable results would follow. The exertions of the Bishop of London and those associated with him in connection with his Fund, the efforts of the Church Pastoral Aid Society, and other similar associations were unable to accomplish a tithe of the work which should be accomplished. He admitted to a certain extent the necessity of an additional number of Bishops; but he insisted that the means of supporting that addition must be provided from the bounty and wealth of the laity, and that the spiritual wants of the people should first be attended to by a large addition to the number of clergy who would exert themselves towards regenerating the masses by immediate intercourse. The great parochial necessities and the spiritual destitution of the people of this country were of the first importance. The foundation of three bishoprics, with all their appurtenancies, would cost at least £500,000, and it was provided that as soon as half the sum required had been contributed the remainder should be supplied by the Common Fund, Now, he believed that if — as would scarcely be the case—the necessary amount could be soon raised from the public, the £250,000 which was to be obtained from the Common Fund could be used to much greater advantage in relieving the spiritual, moral, and parochial necessities of the nation. It might be, perhaps, urged that the claim on the Common Fund would be a very remote one; but he objected to it on that account all the more strongly, because it entailed a reversal of the principle which had guided the House of Commons in their management of the Fund — a reversal to which he did not believe that the House of Commons would give their consent. He therefore, being unwilling to send down to the Commons such a proposition, however distant its fulfilment, moved that the words rendering the Common Fund liable should be omitted from the Bill.

An Amendment moved, page 5 line 4, to leave out ("until One half of the Amount necessary for the Endowment of such Bishop shall have been otherwise provided.")—(The Earl of Shaftesbury.)


said, he fully concurred in the remarks of the noble Earl as to the importance of relieving the spiritual destitution of the country. And he believed that one of the greatest national questions for the consideration of the Legislature was how some religious training could be communicated to the vast mass of men who were growing up in our great manufacturing centres without any such training. He differed, however, with the noble Earl on another point, inasmuch as he believed that the retention of the words entailed no reversal of the principle which had been adopted by the House of Commons. When the Episcopal Fund and the Fund for enlarging the small livings were united to form the Common Fund, it was on the distinct understanding that the Common Fund should be liable to all the claims to which theretofore the two Funds were separately liable. The omission of the words, as proposed by the noble Earl, would in effect affirm a new principle that nothing should, under any circumstances, be given out of the Common Fund to the endowment of new bishoprics. If the three bishoprics were founded at the present moment, the only demand made upon the Common Fund would amount to £6,000 a year—a very small sum indeed compared with what had been granted towards the augmentation of small livings. The reason why they desired to see the bishoprics increased was not for the sake of the Bishops who would fill the sees, but because they believed that such an increase would more than anything else tend to strengthen the Church, and add life and vitality to the work in which she was engaged—more, indeed, than if the same amount were devoted to the augmentation of small livings. Their Lordships had only to turn their attention to the efforts of the Bishop of London to see what could be done by even a single Bishop. The noble Earl had capitalized the amount that would be required, and had stated that the expenditure of such a sum would go far to relieve the whole of the destitution in England and Wales. Now, in that opinion, he could by no means concur, for a sum as large had actually been expended during the past few years in London alone, with scarcely any perceptible effect. He trusted that their Lordships would not consent to strike out the words referred to by the noble Lord, and thus reverse the decision at which they had arrived at a previous stage, unless, indeed, they struck out the whole of the clause, leaving Parliament to deal with the subject as might be thought proper from time to time—a course to which he had no objection.


said, he fully agreed in the opinion that money bestowed on the foundation of a bishopric was by no means lost. For an example, during the sixteen years in which the most rev. Prelate on his right filled the see of Ripon, he raised for ecclesiastical purposes no less than £600,000. But he objected to the clause in its present form because, while it did not bind the Common Fund to raise the money at present, it involved a hazy claim upon it at some future period. He protested against this mode of treating the question. If the claim were to be satisfied now, it would put a stop to those operations which as yet had been attended by so much benefit to the country; and if the claim were only a future one, it would be better to let the matter be dealt with by Parliament at the proper time. It was only fair to the public, to Parliament, and to those clergymen whose incomes were less than £150 per annum, of whom there were thousands in this country, that the matter should be fairly discussed. He thought that for the present the Common Fund should be left to do its work of justice and mercy, and when the proper time came for increasing the Episcopate, Parliament could be applied to do what was just and right in the matter.


stated, that the clause as it now stood would have the effect of directly repealing the present Act, and would deprive the Common Fund of a very large revenue, which would be far better employed in relieving spiritual destitution than in the manner proposed by the clause.


said, he should like to see both wants supplied—both that of spiritual destitution and that of an increase in the Episcopate. Now, under the existing arrangements the two Funds had been combined into one, and the united Fund had been made applicable to the two purposes. It was now, for the first time, proposed by the clause as it stood at present to apply the united Fund to one of those purposes to the exclusion of the other. If the clause were omitted altogether the law affecting the Fund would be left as it stood at present—that was to say, the application of the Fund to the one or the other purpose would be left to the discretion of the Ecclesiastical Commissioners; whereas, if it were retained they would have affirmed that funds derived from episcopal estates should in no case be applied to episcopal purposes. That was quite a new principle. The more straightforward course would be to omit the clause altogether; but if that suggestion were not adopted, then he should support the moderate Amendment of the right rev. Prelate. He had had some correspondence with the newly-appointed Bishop of Rochester, who had represented the great inconvenience that arose from the great extent and large population of his diocese, and who stated that, although he had a most desirable residence, yet if the Ecclesiastical Commissioners were empowered to sell that property and to erect two moderate residences, one in the diocese of Rochester and another for the Bishop of the diocese to be carved out of it, he would willingly contribute £1,000 per annum out of the £5,000 per annum he at present received towards the income of the new Bishop. The right rev. Prelate added that he should, on the whole, be better off in the more moderate residence. He gave his hearty assent to the Amendment of the right rev. Prelate, as he was opposed to what he considered to be an unjust restriction of the present powers of the Ecclesiastical Commissioners.


said, that it would be a breach of the understanding upon which the two Funds were fused if the clause were agreed to. The Episcopal Fund had for many years been indebted to the Common Fund, and it would therefore be very unjust to further charge it for this new purpose before the previous debt was paid. When the Common Fund was reimbursed by the Episcopal Fund the case put by his noble Friend (the Earl of Shaftesbury) might be considered. It would be against the understanding come to when the two Funds were fused to say that the Common Fund should never be chargeable for any increase of episcopal objects; but a specific Bill should be introduced for the purpose. The Amendment was not founded on any theoretical objection.


said, it seemed to him that a considerable misapprehension existed on this subject. The observations which had fallen from some of his noble Friends opposite would convey the idea that from the merging of the Episcopal Fund in the Common Fund the purpose for which the Episcopal Fund was especially instituted had been lost sight of; but that was not the case. The proper reading of the Act was this— All the several payments now payable out of the Episcopal and Common Funds respectively shall and may be payable out of the Common Fund. The word "respectively" governed both. If the Amendment of the noble Earl were carried it would amount to a reversal of the law which had subsisted since 1850.

On Question, That the said Words stand Part of the Bill? their Lordships divided:—Contents 82; Not-Contents 73: Majority 9.

Canterbury, Archp. Lauderdale, E.
Chelmsford, L. (L. Chancellor.) Leven and Melville, E.
Lucan, E.
Malmesbury, E.
Buckingham and Chandos, D. Manvers, E.
Powis, E.
Marlborough, D. Romney, E.
Richmond, D. Sandwich, E.
Shrewsbury, E.
Bath, M. [Teller.] Stanhope, E.
Bristol, M. Stradbroke, E.
Townshend, M. Strange, E. (D. Athol.)
Tankerville, E.
Amherst, E. Wilton, E.
Aylesford, E. Winchilsea and Nottingham, E.
Bantry, E.
Beauchamp, E.[Teller.]
Belmore, E. De Vesci, V.
Bradford, E. Hardinge, V.
Cadogan, E. Hawarden, V.
Cardigan, E. Templetown, V.
Carnarvon, E.
Coventry, E. Bangor, Bp.
Derby, E. Chester, Bp.
Devon, E. Gloucester and Bristol, Bp.
Eldon, E.
Ellenborough, E. Lincoln, Bp.
Haddington, E. Llandaff, Bp.
Home, E. London, Bp.
Oxford, Bp.
Bagot, L. Heytesbury, L.
Boston, L. Hylton, L.
Brancepeth, L. (V. Boyne.) Lovel and Holland, L. (E. Egmont.)
Cairns, L. Middleton, L.
Carew, L. Moore, L. (M. Drogheda.)
Clifton, L. (E. Darnley.)
Clinton, L. Raglan, L.
Colonsay, L. Redesdale, L.
Colville of Culross, L. Rivers, L.
Delamere, L. Sherborne, L.
Denman, L. Silchester, L. (E. Longford.)
Digby, L.
Egerton, L. Stewart of Garlies, L. (E. Galloway.)
Foxford, L. (E. Limerick.)
Templemore, L.
Gage, L. (V. Gage.) Tredegar, L.
Hartismere, L. (L. Henniker.) Vernon, L.
Wharncliffe, L.
Wynford, L.
York, Archp. Blantyre, L.
Bolton, L.
Cleveland, D. Boyle, L. (E. Cork and Orrery.)
Devonshire, D.
Somerset, D. Brodrick, L. (V. Midleton.)
Ailesbury, M. Castlemaine, L.
Camden, M. Churchill, L.
Normanby, M. Churston, L.
Clermont, L.
Airlie, E. Clonbrock, L.
Bathurst, E. Congleton, L.
Caithness, E. Cranworth, L.
Camperdown, E. Dacre, L.
Clarendon, E. Foley, L.
Cowper, E. Harris, L.
Dartrey, E. Houghton, L.
De Grey, E. Kenry, L. (E. Dunraven and Mount-Earl.)
Fortescue, E.
Graham, E. (D. Montrose.)
Leigh, L.
Granville, E. Lyttelton, L. [Teller.]
Grey, E. Methuen, L.
Harrowby, E. Minster, L. (M. Conyngham.)
Kimberley, E.
Morley, E. Overstone, L.
Russell, E. Poltimore, L.
Shaftesbury, E.[Teller.] Ponsonby, L. (E. Bessborough.)
Sommers, E.
Portman, L.
Clancaty, V. (E. Clancarty.) Romilly, L.
Saltersford, L. (E. Courtown.)
Eversley, V.
Halifax, V. Saye and Sele, L.
Lifford, V. Seaton, L.
Stratford de Redcliffe, V. Sefton, L. (E. Sefton.)
Sydney, V. Somerhill, L. (M. Clanricarde.)
Carlisle, Bp. Stanley of Alderley, L.
Durham, Bp. Stratheden, L.
Ripon, Bp. Sundridge, L. (D. Argyll.)
Winchester, Bp.
Talbot de Malahide, L.
Aveland, L. Taunton, L.
Belper, L. Truro, L.

remarked that a strong feeling existed as to the necessity of some increase of the Episcopate, but the discussion had shown how great the difficulty was of raising the funds necessary for the purpose. He rose to move to insert a clause in place of Clause 13, which had been struck out on the Report.

An Amendment moved at the end of the Bill to add the following clause:— And whereas it is expedient that Assistance should be provided for Bishops who may require it for the more effectual Performance of their Duties; be it enacted, That if the Bishop of any Diocese in England or Wales shall Petition Her Majesty to appoint One or more of the Persons holding the Office of Dean, Archdeacon, or Canon Residentiary in his Diocese to be Assistant Bishop of the same, it shall be lawful for Her Majesty, if She shall think fit, to present such Dean, Archdeacon, or Canon Residentiary, by Her Letters Patent under the Great Seal, to the Archbishop of the Province, and to require the Archbishop, if there shall be no lawful Impediment, to consecrate the Person so presented to him as Assistant Bishop of the See held by the Bishop whose Petition has been presented to Her Majesty, and it shall be the Duty of the Archbishop within Three Months of his receiving the Letters Patent to consecrate accordingly the Person therein named."—(The Earl Grey.)


said, that he was unable to agree to the clause. He considered the question one of the deepest moment to the future of the Church of England. The office of Suffragan or Assistant Bishop which the clause proposed to call into existence was an office unknown till this time in the Church of Christ, There was, in fact, no warrant in the ancient writers for the proposal of the noble Earl. At the time of the Reformation there were a number of suffragan Bishops who were employed to assist those Prelates who presided over large sees. They usually resided in large towns, where they exercised episcopal jurisdiction, and assisted the neighbouring Bishops. They were commonly called Bishops in partibus. There were certain Bishops in the sees within the pale in Ireland, who, having been driven from them, still retained the titles derived from their sees, and came and assisted the English Bishops in carrying out their work. Of course, these persons exercised the functions which had been conferred upon them originally in another country. In a word, they were precisely analogous to returned colonial Bishops at the present day. The declaration of the Church of England in the Ordination Service was that it was plain to all persons diligently reading the Holy Scripture and the ancient authors that there had been from the beginning in the Church of Christ three orders—Bishops, priests, and deacons. It went on to say that these were to be continued amongst us. What authority, he would ask, had any branch of the Church to change altogether the conditions under which the office of Bishop had been created by its Founder, and then to say that it was the same office? In order that a marriage should be contracted it was necessary that there should be a wife as well as a husband. A man might, however, become a widower, and in the same manner a man who had been properly and perfectly consecrated to a see might be driven from it, and might then be capable of assisting other Bishops in their sees; but a Bishop could not be created unless he had a see in the first instance. If, however, their Lordships were called upon to create an office altogether new in the Church of Christ, he would ask whether that would be a safe thing in the present state of things around us? Would it not be a thousand times better that the Bishops, who were overworked at home, should be assisted by returned colonial Bishops? He had now stated his great objection to the scheme, Let them beware of what they were asked to do—let him remind them that everything they did was done in the face of a vigilant and insidious enemy—the Church of Rome, which was always striving to throw discredit on the validity of the episcopal succession in the Church of England. In charity to those persons who might be driven into the meshes which were so thickly spread around them, he would say to their Lordships, "Beware how you touch, without being fully aware of what you are doing, these ancient institutions of the Church of Christ." He also objected to the establishment of this new order on other grounds. Supposing they were created and multiplied, that they were enabled to perform episcopal offices, and that there was no taint about their spiritual patent of creation, what would be the duties to the discharge of which they could be limited? Why, the special spiritual duties of the episcopal order. They would have to confirm, to assist at ordinations, and to take the direct spiritual part of the episcopal office, in order to enable the Bishops to devote their chief attention to Parliament and other worldly matters. Nothing, in his opinion, would tend more to lower them in public estimation than a measure which would lead to their being mere men in Parliament and about Court, more writers of letters, I and which would take away from them the dealing with the souls of men; their confirmation tours, and the coming in contact with the poor of this country in the direct discharge of their spiritual engagements. There was a pregnant passage in Lord Bacon which bore upon this question. Speaking of a proposal made in his day of certain parts of the episcopal office being delegated to others, Lord Bacon said— Surely in this, ab initio non fuit sic; but it is probable that Bishops when they gave themselves too much to the glory of the world, and became grandees in kingdoms, and great councillors to princes, then did they delegate their proper jurisdictions as things of too inferior a nature for their greatness. He protested against a scheme which would sap the whole strength of the episcopal office. The words he had just read would be prophetic if their Lordships were going to make more Bishops to perform spiritual duties in order that the present Bishops might be left with what men considered to be the worldly parts of the office. Nothing, he believed, could so injure the Bishops in the estimation of the people of England as any such partition of duties. When he quitted this busy city and went into his diocese he ministered day by day among the poor, in confirmations and the like, giving advice in spiritual matters and bringing the episcopal office face to face with the spiritual necessities of the people. When he was doing this he felt conscious of a reality in his office. But if their Lordships were to relieve the Bishops of these duties they would be taking the very gem from their mitres and making them mere idle, empty pageants, representing a, thing that had passed away. He believed that it would be a great blessing to maintain intact the union between the Church and the State, and that the multiplication in connection with what professed to be the episcopal office of persons who should not be under the restraints which God's providence had put upon the present Bishops, and who should be much less closely connected with the State—that such a multiplication would, in the present temper of men's minds, be sowing the seeds of future danger and dissension, the extent of which it would be hard to estimate. If, for instance, the so-called Bishops were held to have the succession, what an opening would be afforded for new troubles in these troublous times. He confessed that when he reflected on the present position of the Church of England, he saw great danger in giving in any sense the sacred trust of the episcopate to persons who might join one of the extreme parties whom it was now sought to bring back to the unity of the Church. In conclusion, he prayed their Lordships not rashly to take a step which he believed the Church of England would rue to the last day of its existence.


said, it was the fate of the question of suffragans to be always brought under their Lordships' notice late in the evening; but he trusted he might be excused if even at that late hour he trespassed for a short time upon their attention. No one could more truly appreciate than himself the spiritual nature of the episcopal office, and no man could be more unwilling than himself to lend his aid to any system which might lead the Bishops of the Church of England to regard their secular, rather than their spiritual position. He thought, however, that there was another side to the picture which the right rev. Prelate had drawn. Suppose a Bishop in the extremity of old age, altogether unable to perform his spiritual functions and go through the ordinary business of his diocese—what was to become of his diocese under the present system? It might be said that he ought to resign; but Parliament had provided no means whatever for enabling a Bishop to do so. He did not contend that the plan of the noble Earl (Earl Grey) was the best that could be devised, but it was the only one which had been proposed; and unless their Lordships desired that three or four dioceses at a time should be totally uncared for, it was their bounden duty to provide some means suited to a case where a Bishop afflicted with incapacity through old age or sickness became unable to discharge his spiritual and temporal duties. The right rev. Prelate (the Bishop of Oxford) suggested that recourse might be had to the assistance of their colonial brethren. Having himself cause to be deeply thankful for assistance which he had received during a severe illness last year, he should be the last to be wanting in respect or admiration for the colonial Bishops; but if this was a question affecting, not the Church, but the administration of justice, and a Judge became so old or unwell that he could not perform his duties, would it be deemed proper that no mode should exist for performing his functions except by sending for some retired Indian or colonial Judge to take his place? That was precisely the position in which the Church was placed by the want of legislation to meet these difficulties. There might be dioceses in particular parts of the country where the pressure was not so constant or so great; but in London, unless the Bishop were able to appear from day to day, as much inconvenience arose to public business, and the spiritual affairs of the diocese would be thrown into as much confusion, as would arise in an assize court if the Judge were suddenly taken ill on his way to it. The plan proposed by the noble Earl was the only one proposed in an intelligible form to meet the difficulties of the case. In certain dioceses, also, it was obvious that the amount of work must always be such as to prevent its being fully accomplished unless some supplemental assistance were provided, and this would be the case however the limits of the diocese might be curtailed. He did not wish to refer again to the diocese over which he had been appointed; but outside its immediate duties, attention had to be given to the appointment of chaplains all over the Continent of Europe, and not merely in Europe, but in other parts of the world as well—for example, in South America. There were also various duties connected with chaplains going to India, and in a degree with army and navy chaplains. To enable all these duties to be fully and fairly performed it was most desirable that assistance should be given. While his right rev. Friend (the Bishop of Oxford) was speaking he could not help recalling an incident in the career of his own predecessor, to whom, when in the full vigour of his intellectual powers, the appointment of suffragan bishops was suggested. He rejected the proposal unhesitatingly; when the person who proposed it to him said quietly, "Perhaps you will take a different view of the matter when you come to be seventy years of age." And therefore to his right rev. Friend, who now, with his undoubted ability and great physical and intellectual force, saw no difficulty in the discharge of his duties, he ventured to say that a time might come when even he would find it difficult to accomplish all those duties which he now discharged so much to the satisfaction of the Church. He certainly had been surprised to hear the proposal made by this Bill represented as a novelty, for their Lordships would remember the discussion which had taken place with regard to the wisdom or otherwise of giving authority for the election of a suffragan Bishop to one of the colonial Bishops in Canada. The Bishop of Niagara appointed the other day was a suffragan Bishop. [The Bishop of OXFORD: Cum jure successions.] Whether this were so or not he could not say, for there were no letters patent in his case. But the Bishop of Kingston was appointed as suffragan, and in his patent he found no mention of any jus successionis—he was simply a suffragan of the Bishop of Jamaica, and the authority under which he performed his duties was exactly the same as that which was proposed to be given to the assistant Bishops whom it was now sought to create. The only difference was that the colonial Bishops who had been created had certainly territorial titles. He quite granted that the connection existing between a Bishop and his see was the same as that existing between husband and wife; but it was a strange application of the matrimonial simile to maintain that the name, and the name alone, constituted the true partnership of the matrimonial relation. Without going back to Leo, with whom their Lordships no doubt were as familiar as the right rev. Prelate, he tools his stand on the Act which was passed at the time of the Reformation, and continued to be put in force till the reign of Charles II., and, looking to its terms, he felt persuaded that by the plan which the noble Earl proposed there was no danger of introducing any novelty into the Church of England. That no great danger to the episcopal succession need be apprehended from the introduction of suffragan Bishops must be plain, because, if his judgment were accurate, the whole succession of the English Bishops depended on the presence of a suffragan Bishop on the occasion when Archbishop Parker was placed on the throne of Canterbury. What was the use of saying that the introduction of suffragan Bishops would invalidate the succession of English Bishops now, when, if the argument were good for anything, that succession must have been invalidated so far back as the time of Archbishop Parker? He did not believe that the system which the noble Earl proposed to introduce would be in any way an encouragement to Bishops to neglect their spiritual duties, or that it would introduce any novelty either into the Church of England or the Church of Christ. And the proposal of the noble Earl had this great recommendation, that before applying for fresh funds and the creation of fresh bishoprics, it sought to utilise the machinery already existing in the Church. Large revenues were appropriated to our different cathedrals, and these were surrounded with officers and dignitaries who were resident. He desired that these should be maintained with all the influence they at present enjoyed, but that their usefulness should be increased. The proposal of the noble Earl having for its object practically to increase the usefulness of the existing institutions of the Church of England, this, in addition to the other reasons which had been put forward, induced him to believe that it was founded on good sense.


said, that with every respect for the learning and knowledge of Church matters which distinguished the right rev. Prelate who had just spoken, there appeared to him to be practical difficulties in the way of the proposal of the noble Earl, which made him hesitate to adopt it. At present one mode existed of appointing Bishops; they were chosen by the Crown and elected by the Chapter. It was proposed that in future there should be a totally different method of appointment; that the Chapter should be passed over, that the Bishops themselves should select, and the Crown confirm the appointment. Moreover, there would be difficulties with regard to the question of ordination. A suffragan Bishop would have, apparently, all the high and important duties of a Bishop; but would he be respected in the same manner? Would he be able to secure for his office that high veneration which he must say was usually given to Bishops of the Church of England in this country? In the first place the suffragan would be a nominee of the Bishop of the diocese; he could only perform his functions while holding the permission of that Bishop, and he might be at any time removed by the appointment of a new Bishop of the diocese. Again, was it likely that the successor of the Bishop would be satisfied in all cases with a person whom he had not chosen? Would he not desire to appoint his own suffragan? He could not help thinking that in consecrating to the office of Bishop a person who might afterwards cease to exercise the functions of Bishop, and even while he performed them only did so at the will of another, they would be creating grave confusion in the minds of the people, and doing much to lower the office of Bishop in the estimation of the country. Cases would be continually arising in which persons who had solemnly engaged to perform episcopal functions would not be permitted to do so, and the tendency of this would be to lower the office of Bishop in the estimation of the people. He could, however, conceive cases in which a Bishop might be unable from age or infirmity to perform his duties, and it would be very desirable to make some provision permitting him to retire.


said, that if the noble Earl (Earl Russell) had introduced a Bill enabling Bishops to resign he would have at once given up all idea of proposing the course he had. It could not be said that the existence of ex-suffragan Bishops would tend to lower the office of Bishop, because their case would be exactly similar to that of ex-colonial Bishops, of whom several were now living in this country without producing the result the noble Earl feared. He did not know that they were treated with less respect or held in less esteem, because they no longer presided over dioceses. With regard to the advisability of intrusting ordination to a suffragan Bishop, in the case of an aged Bishop the assistant would merely ordain; the examination would be conducted by the chaplain of the Bishop. There were, however, very high authorities in support of the opinion that chorepiscopi were able to perform all the offices of a Bishop.


objected to the clause, which he thought involved a most subversive change in the whole system of the Church—one which would operate generally, although it had been called for only by a particular case. It would be far better if the Government would promise to introduce a Bill during next Session relieving Bishops who had become unable to fulfil the duties of the office through age or other unavoidable circumstances. He thought such a proposition would be received with their favourable attention, The Bill under discussion not only made a general rule for assisting all Bishops, including those who, perhaps, did not deserve assistance, but it invaded the prerogative of the Crown in a most essential matter. For centuries Bishops had been appointed by the Crown, but this Bill proposed that one Bishop should appoint another. He was most anxious to preserve the Church, but did not much regard the convenience of Churchmen, and he insisted on the importance of upholding the prerogative of the Crown in its integrity, as a means of maintaining the Church in its present position, and preserving the office of Bishop surrounded with all the dignity and reverence in which it was held by the people. If the country were covered with these dummy bishops; if a man were created a Bishop, but required to remain in a dormant state, capable of exercising all the functions of a Bishop, but not permitted to exercise one until touched by the inspiring hand of an existing Bishop; if it were determined to create a sort of lay figure in a Bishop's dress, with a real Bishop standing by to make use of him by moving a leg now, an arm then, and a head upon another occasion, and then to put him back in his dormant condition, a mixed figure of episcopal humanity—if all this were done, it would be impossible to support the respectability of the episcopal order, and would certainly injure the Church. He urged their Lordships to reject the clause.


said, that although he doubted whether the Bill would pass the other House, he should still think a great step had been gained by the passing of the measure through one House. The only vital part of the Bill in his estimation was that which provided for the creation, on such times as Parliament might see fit, of those three new sees the necessity for which had been urged on such high authority.

On Question? Their Lordships divided:—Contents 35; Not-Contents 72: Majority 37.

Canterbury, Archp. Lincoln, Bp.
London, Bp.
Cleveland, D. Ripon, Bp.
Bath, M.
Camden, M. Belper, L.
Normanby, M. Blantyre, L.
Westminster, M. Brodrick, L. (V. Midleton.)
Airlie, E.
Belmore, E. Clermont, L.
Camperdown, E. Foley, L.
Dartrey, E. Heytesbury, L.
Devon, E. Leigh, L.
Fitzwilliam, E. Lyttelton, L. [Teller.]
Grey, E. [Teller.] Overstone, L.
Romney, E. Somerhill, L. (M. Clanricarde.)
Clancarty, V. Stanley of Alderley, L.
Eversley, V. Stewart of Garlies, L. (E. Galloway.)
Bangor, Bp. Suffield, L.
Gloucester and Bristol, Bp. Vernon, L.
Chelmsford, L. (L. Chancellor.) Templetown, V.
York, Archp. Carlisle, Bp.
Chester, Bp.
Buckingham and Chandos, D. Durham, Bp.
Llandaff, Bp.
Marlborough, D. Oxford, Bp.
Richmond, D. Winchester, Bp.
Ailesbury, M. Bagot, L.
Bath, M. [Teller.] Cairns, L.
Exeter, M. Carew, L.
Churchill, L.
Aylesford, E. Clinton, L.
Bantry, E. Colonsay, L.
Beauchamp, E. Colville of Culross, L.
Bradford, E. Cranworth, L.
Cardigan, E. Delamere, L.
Carnarvon, E. Denman, L.
Derby, E. Egerton, L.
Eldon, E. Houghton, L.
Ellenborough, E. Lovel and Holland, L. (E. Egmont.)
Graham, E. (D. Montrose.)
Lyveden, L.
Haddington, E. Middleton, L.
Harrowby, E. Mont Eagle, L. (M. Sligo.)
Leven and Melville, E.
Lucan, E. Moore, L. (M. Drogheda.)
Malmesbury, E.
Manvers, E. Poltimore, L.
Morley, E. Portman, L.
Powis, E. Raglan, L.
Russell, E. Redesdale, L.
Shaftesbury, E. Rivers, L.
Shrewsbury, E. Romilly, L.
Sommers, E. Seaton, L.
Tankerville, E. Sherborne, L.
Silchester, L. (E. Longford.)
De Vesci, V.
Hardinge, V. Templemore, L.
Hawarden, V. Tyrone, L. (M. Waterford.)
Lifford, V.
Sydney, V. Wharncliffe, L. [Teller].

Resolved in the Negative.

Bill passed, and sent to the Commons.