« ZurückWeiter »
reformers; but not without the dangerous effect of rekindling throughout the country, the flame of political animosity.
Some efforts were made to disburthen the country of a population felt to be redundant, in the present depressed state of commerce and manufactures, by affording encouragement to emigration. In the first session of the year a parliamentary grant of 50,0001. was voted, for the purpose of establishing settlers on the eastern border of the colony. of the Cape of Good Hope. Means were also taken to invite public attention to the advantages promised to free settlers on the shores of the great Austrasian continent, and a second exploratory journey undertaken by direction of the governor of New South Wales, has discovered a large tract of fertile and uninhabited land ready to become an additional province of the future British empire in the southern hemisphere.
The poor-laws, with the influence exerted by them on the condition moral and political, of the lower classes;—the state of prisons andof prison discipline; and the state and actual operation of that portion of the criminal laws under which capital punishment is denounced ;-all subjects of high importance, and bearing upon each other by several points ;-have undergone the laborious and able investigation of parliamentary committees; and copious extracts from their reports and minutes of evidence will be found in this volume. These documents, which are not regularly accessible to the public at large, will, it is hoped, be regarded as a valuable addition to the contents of an Annual Register; at a period, especially, when the sciences of legislation and of political economy are cultivated with an ardor absolutely unprecedented, and when the active benevolence so long characteristic of the English nation, is daily becoming, under their guidance, more reflecting, and more enlightened.