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The answer which was returned to his Excellency, by those of his Majesty's servants, to whom this communication was made, was to the following effect; that if the Irish parliament should send over to England such a plan, as should appear to be well calculated to give effectual relief to Ireland, in its present distress, their opinion would be, that it ought to be carried into execution, although the tax upon absentees should be a part of it.
I beg leave to trouble your Grace to communicate this information to ""the other Lords, and have the honour to be, with great respect,
&c. &c. &c.
1AM dqfired by the Duke of Devonshire, Lord Besborough, Lord Upper Ossory, and Lord Milton, to communicate to you the inclosed papers, which contain what has passed between us and his Majesty's ministers, upon the information we had received of a partial land-tax, which is calculated to affect only those who do not commonly reside in that kingdom.
We thought it proper to apply to Lord North, in order to authenticate our intelligence, and to lay a proper ground for a future proceeding on this subject. It was thought relpectful to government, not to give too easy a credit to the report of so very extraordinary a procedure. It appeared nt ;esiary to lose no time in stating our objections, ihat we might give the ministry
here an opportunity of reconsiJering the matter before it mould be openly countenanced by the King's servants in Ireland.'
Lord North's second answer to our letter, contains an explicit avowal of the design; it is coloured over with the usual pretences of supplying the revenue, and restoring public credit; but, if the ordinary revenue of Ireland, by any management, is become now, in the time of profound peace, so unequal to the support of the establishments, as to require extraordinary aids, we cannot conceive, that the necessity of new tax.s, can furnish a reason for imposing such as are unjust.
The Irish parliament meets again on the 28th of this month. Many gentlemen of consideration for their interests and abilities, will oppose this project in Ireland; but with the previous countenance it has received here, it is to be apprehended, that their opposition may prove ineffectual, and that the tax-bill may be transmitted to England before the end os November.
The opposition, therefore, in order to be effectual must be early; and it must be made in England as well as in Ireland. We have a right to be heard by our counsel against this measure, and may oppose it in every stage of its progress before the privy.council here.
It is therefore wished, that a general meeting of those who are most immediately concerned, may be held in London about the middle of November.
You shall undoubtedly be informed of any iuture steps that may be taken in this unprecedented plan of taxation, and shall receive proper notice of the piecise time
and and ptace that (halt be thought adviseable for the meeting.
I have the honour to be,
Your most obedient,
Grofiveaor-fquare, n „y„ •" * RoCKINCHAM.
Oct. 30, 1773.
Copy of a second Circular hitter sent by the Marntut cf Rockingham to the several GtntUmen liable to be ajjalea by the Absentee Tax.
SINCE I had the 'honour of writing to you upon the projtct of a partial land tax in Ireland, an opinion generally prevailed, that the design had been reconsidered h<:re, and that it was probably laid asiJe. The accounts tVcm Ireland, had given room to imagine, that if the tax was proposed there, it would be rejected. Great numbers of the inost considerable persons for weight, ContiJeracicn, and ability, had stitwn a determination to oppose it. The city and county ot Dublin, and other counties, had declared their diluke to a measure so dangerous and unjust.
In this situation it seemed not necessary to call a meeting, which might occasion trouble and inconvenience to many gentlemen; but some circumilances have very lately occurred, which seem to indicate, that the nica'ure is by no mear.s laid aside, ft appears by accounts irom Ireland, that Mr. Elacjuicrc, Principal Secretary to the LordLieutenant of Ireland, did, in the House of Commons there, name the partial land-tax as one of the ways and means towards the Inpply which should be asked. It is laid indeed that he did not absolutely propose the cajsi bu: declared a
predilection for it; and by the accounts received from Ireland in the course of this week, it is now said, that government there have taken a strong part in favour os this measure. Though the immediate calling of a meeting may be postponed until the fate of the motion for this tax, which is expected to be made this week in Ireland, is known, it is thought to be highly incun;be:u on us to give this information to all those to v. horn we had the honour to communicate what had already paiTeiTi that they may be so far prepared, that it ;■ meeting is called in the course of the next fortnight, they may be able, if they think it proper, to come to London with the less inconvenience.
By the answers I received to the letters, 1 find almost a general concurrence in disapprobation of the tax and its principles.
The trust so honourably conferred on us, makes a proper vigilance very much our duty. The giving unnecessary trouble will be avoided; but if the business proceeds, the more full the meeting, the greater force and sanction will be given to any proceeding that may be deemed expedient in order to dcleat this deiign.
The Lords who are now in town, and in consequence of whose desire I took the liberty of troubling you with the former letter, have empowered me now to fend ycu this information,
1 have the honour to be,
Your rr.oll obedient ard
Account os the Honours paid by the Ajjtmbly and Council of Jamaica, to the Memory of tht late Sir William Trelawncy, Bart. Governor of that ljland.
Extract of a Litter from Kingston in Jamaica, Dec. 19, 1772.
IT is with real concern we acquaint the public, that on Friday night, the nth instant, his Excellency Sir William Trclawney, Bart, our very worthy and much esteemed Governor, departed this life, after a long atid tedious illness, which ho b.>re with fortitude and magnanimity, and died with that firm hope ot a happy immortality, which a virtuous and admirable uniformity and consistency of character, and the calm consciousness of a life well spent in the service jof his country, at once inspired and justified. During four years residence in the administration os this government, he so wisely guided and steadily held the reins of power, and maintained such an inflexible integrity of conduct, altogether, unbiassed by private attachments or selfish considerations, that party herself forgot her resentments, and seemingly left no contest, but who should most promote the ease and happiness of an administration, which gave ease and happiness to all. The great and universal regret which the apprehension of this unhappy event has, for some time past, given to all ranks of people, is the surest proof of his Excellency's merit, as well as the strongest testimony, that a government conducted on the fame principles, cannot fail of meeting the noblest reward, the gen> \\ applause of a grateful and united people.
The next day, being Saturday the 12th instant, the Honourable the House of Assembly came to the following resolution:
'Resolved, In order to testify 'the grateful respect which 'this House entertained of his 'late Excellency's merit, the 'fense they have ot' the great
• and univeisal satis:action
• which his mild and equi
• table administration gave to 'all ranks of people, and (he
• great regret which they seel
• at his loss, it be made the 'request of this House to 'Lady Trelavvney, that her
• Ladyship consent that his
• Excellency's funeral be con'ducted at the public ex
In consequence of this vote a joint committee of the Hon. the Council and Assembly was appointed to conduct the funeral, which, notwithstanding the shortness of time, was managed witk equal propriety and magnificence.
Accordingly on Sunday evening the 13th instant, the body, inclosed in a coffin ot lead, placed in an outward shell, covered with crimson velvet, and richly furnished, lay in state in the council-ch.mber, which was hung with black, a--.d illuminated with large tapers of wax; and, to their gr;:t: honour, the mem bets of the legislature, the officers of the taiv, army, and militi), the magistrate, and all ranks ot people, ieeir.cJ to vie with each other in Shewing the m-ist grateful testimony of rtlp^ct and regard to the Governor's memory.
About eleven o'clock the same evening, the procession began from the King's house in the following order, the artillery siring minute guns, viz.
Spanish-Town regiment of foot militia.—The 36th regiment of foot under the command of Col. Campbell, marching ia form, with their arms reversed, preceded by a band of music, collected from the different regiments and the battaJion lately arrived, playing the dead march in Saul.—Eight mutes. —The governor's secretary and houlhold.—Public officers. — Provolt marshal general.—Physicians. —Clergy.—1 he Body, supported by the hoii. A. Sinclair, hon. W." Brown, t-on. B. Edwards, hon. W. Harvie, hon. J. Scot, hon. T. Iredell, hon. J. Ellis, hon. T. Beach, and four aid de camps.—Chief mourners: hon. Mr. Harrison, and hon. Mr. May.—House of assembly as mourners.—Judges of the grand court and assize.—Col. Provost, and officers of the royal Americans.—Captains of the men of war, and officers of the fleet.— Barristers at law. Master's in chancery. — Attendants. — Troops of horse.
The following Address tuas prtfinttd by the Council of Jamaica, to Lai) Trelawney.
«« The council of Jamaica, being truly sensible of the great loss your ladyship has sustained by the demise os our late worthy governor, beg leave to condole with you on that unhappy occasion.
"We have too great a share in the loss, not to participate with your ladyship in the affliction. Yet we derive no small comfort from the consideration (and we earnestly hope that your ladyship will join in the reflection) that the departure of great and good men, though a loss to us, is the consummation of perfect felicity to them. Your ladyship, too, has the satisfaction to reflect, that your worthy partner, even in this life, had the singular happiness of receiving that reward, which virtue too frequently fails of attaining. He died with the applause of all good men, and in the roll of honour is his memory recorded.
«' We sincerely wish your ladyship a safe voyage to Great Britain, and that your future days may be brightened by happiness, On all occasions, we beg leave to tender your ladyship our best services."
Thefcl/o-iving State of the Export Linen and Linen Tarn 'Trade of Ireland, for the /a/I 70 lean, foetus its <va/l Improvement tuithin that Period, and of tvhat singular Importance its Preservation, from the Ruin •witnt •which it is nonu threatened, is to the Mot her-Country.
It appears by the export entries at the Costom-house at Dublin, whence this account was taken, that the linen trade alone hat decreased 5,000,000 of yards, of the invoice value of 350,0001. in the year 1772; and by the best estimate that could be formed of the exports from March 1772 to March 1773, they .were supposed to have further decreased one-third, which would bring them under 900,0001. so that the exports of linen and yarn taken together, will fall short of 1,100,0001. little more than one half of their amount in the year 1771.