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latter could mistake the slime of his compliments for that enamel with which rising merit is adorned by the praises of long tried and venerated virtue! Young as Mr. Bright is, he is too old a bird to be caught by the ministry, if Sir James Graham is the only disposable chaff they can offer him. Mr. Bright is not yet so nauseated with the honourable applause of his country, as to 'sate himself in that celestial bed,' and then 'prey on the garbage' of the treasury benches.
The honourable member for Durham has shown himself perfectly master of his subject. His statistical statements are of the most striking and convincing kind. One farmer has made out to him an account which shows a clear loss through the havoc occasioned by game, of no less than £204 per annum. He has brought forward instances in Buckinghamshire in which one fourth of the entire crops was consumed by this species of depredation. He adduces another case in Hampshire, in which a loss of £50 a year is annually incurred on the produce of a single field; and another, the case of a respectable farmer in Sterling, who, on a farm of 85 acres, suffers a loss of £50 annually by game; while another occupier in Cheshire, after stating that on one estate three hundred brace of rabbits are weekly destroyed, beside a large amount of hares, adds, it is computed that two hares will eat as much as one sheep.' While in Sussex, a gentlemen, whose name was mentioned, makes the following statement :- I have divided my land into the most damaged side, and the best side. On the best side about 183 acres produced 327 bushels; whilst on the other side about fourteen acres and three roods produced only 53 bushels. The damage computed by a competent valuer is £129 lls., for which I have not received one farthing compensation. Mr. Bright further states that he has not adduced one in a hundred of the cases on which he has written incontestable evidence, the whole of which he is prepared to produce before the committee for which he moved.
The honourable member has further detailed the immense proportion of criminal prosecutions which has reference to offences against the game laws, proving from unquestionable returns that the convictions for these particular offences in the year 1843 amounted to no less frightful a number than 4,529, and exposes, with great boldness, the horribly unjust and tyrannical conduct of game-preserving and clerical magistrates, under these laws.
Mr. Bright has only moved for a select committee, and he has obtained it. The willingness of the Government to accede to his request pretty clearly indicates their confidence of his defeat. It is now for Mr. Bright to fortify the high ground he has been VOL. XVII.
permitted to take, and either to compel the legislature to a tardy and reluctant act of humanity and justice, or else to convince the country that nominal investigations of the imperial parliament, like the trial by jury in Ireland, are 'a mockery, a delusion, and a snare.'
We have left ourselves no room to comment upon the literary character of the honourable Grantley Berkeley's pamphlet. It is inaccurate, and, indeed, illiterate to the last degree. Some of the sentences it contains are altogether false in construction, and only fit for the criticism of school boys. Thus, for example, he says (p. 70): Now there are two ways of ceasing to preserve game, either the one just stated, or because the proprietor, from some personal consideration, &c.' And again (p. 20): 'I do not mean to say that men have never been induced to poach through want, but I assert that it is very rarely the case. Men have thrust their hands through windows in the street that they might be sent to prison, instead of starve; and the occurrence of one fact is about equal to the other.'
Indeed the whole performance sets the critic and the poacher at about equal defiance. It will perhaps suffice to state, that within these few pages the word surface is fourteen times used as an adjective, and once as an adverb !
The late Mr. Sydney Smith, in one of his characteristic letters to the 'Morning Chronicle'confessed that while he had enjoyed the advantages of a brilliant classical education, he had never been taught to write. In reading the literary productions of our aristocracy, it is humiliating to observe how few of them can adopt the first admission, and how many must plead guilty to the second, in a sense far different from that intended by the writer.
Art. VII.-1. The 35th Geo. III., c. 21., entitled · An Act for the better
Education of Persons professing the Popish or Roman Catholic
Religion.' 2. The 40th Geo. 111., c. 85, entitled · An Act for the better Government
of the Seminary established at Maynooth, for the Education of Persons professing the Popish or Roman Catholic Religion, and for amending
the Laws now in force respecting the said Seminary.' 3, The 48th Geo. III., c. 145, entitled An Act to amend two Acts passed
in Ireland, for the better Education of Persons professing the Popish or Roman Catholic Religion, and for the better Government of the Seminary Established at Maynooth for the Education of such Persons,
80 far as relates to the Purchase of Lands and compounding Suits.' THERE are some crises in the affairs of human society, the im. portance of which it is impossible to magnify or overrate; and the position in which this nation is now placed, by the unexpected and astounding proposition of the Prime Minister, in reference to popery in Ireland, is one of precisely this character. The nation is suddenly called upon to choose between two rival systems of church establishment,-between a dominant protestant establishment, on the one hand, and what is in principle the establishment and endowment of all religions, on the other. As the advocates of a free and independent church, we protest against both of these systems; but if either be more opposed to scripture and right reason than the other, we hold it to be that which the nation is now called upon to adopt. We need, therefore, make no apology for entering at once upon the earnest investigation of this subject.
We view the proposition to increase the grant to the college at Maynooth, to the extent, it is supposed, of twenty or thirty thousand pounds, and to keep the buildings of that college in repair, under the superintendence of the Board of Works, as only part of a system, which must, in a short time, end in the endowment by the state of the Roman catholic church in Ireland. It seems that the tottering protestant establishment of that country must, if possible, be sustained; not for the benefit which it confers upon the community, nor for the truth which it inculcates, but that the tithes may be preserved, and the livings be maintained, for the benefit of the aristocracy, whose perquisites they are. The pretence of maintaining the Irish establishment, because it teaches the truth, is now virtually abandoned ; for the legislature is called upon to provide means that the effect of that truth may be counteracted,--that priests may be multiplied and educated, and sent forth, to teach what our public formularies have designated as 'damnable heresies.' Let not the advocates of the Irish establishment henceforth say, that it is maintained for its apostolic doctrine, or its evangelical ministers; for the fact will be palpable henceforth, that not the truth, but the tithes are its stability,—not the gospel, but the livings, are its foundation. We have heard much of political dissenters,' in these modern days; we now know what a 'political churchman' is. A staunch supporter of the church as by law established, he cares but little about its doctrines; a protestant in name, he takes the haters of protestantism at home under his patronage, and abroad, abandons Tahiti to the Propaganda. Thank God! we have some few faithful to his truth, -so far, at least, as the latitudinarianism of our statesmen is concerned—even in the establishment; some who, with the Rev. Edward Bickersteth, are willing to declare, that if the state cannot uphold principle, and the truth of God must be maintained as second only, it is best for the state to let all alone, that, if the state feels itself incompetent to choose between truth and falsehood, it would be best to leave all to themselves ; but to support truth and falsehood at the same time is not wisdom, but presumptuous meddling with sacred things.'* We have long laboured to convince the public, that for statesmen to take upon themselves to decide what is truth, and to impose that upon the nation, is a 'presumptuous meddling with sacred things; and we rejoice to know that in the protestant dissenters of this kingdom,—the holders with us of this great cardinal doctrine, we are likely now to find the great bulwark of protestantism. If this measure for reconciling the catholics to the continuance of the Irish establishment is to be defeated, we believe it must be mainly through the instrumentality of protestant dissenters; for they only possess the arms by which the battle can be fought and won. While other sects are struggling for domination, we are struggling for equality. While we assert the sole supremacy of the Great Head of the church, and vindicate his laws from the tampering of temporal authority, we assert for every man the same rights as we claim for ourselves. We ask for no exclusive privileges, for no state patronage; we demand nothing which we refuse to others. The independence of the church-of-state patronage and controul, is the only theory which reconciles obedience to the laws of Christ with civil liberty. For that independence we earnestly contend; and therefore, into this contest we can now enter as impartial, and disinterested arbitrators. As a body, we have nothing to lose by defeat, and nothing to gain by victory. We come forward with this simple view, to see justice done, both to the cause of God and to the liberties of our fellow countrymen. The catholics know that we have never sided with their oppressors, but have been companions with them in suffering under wrong: they know that we sympathized with them under their oppressions, and that we helped them to break off their chains.
It is now just twenty years since the deputation from the Catholic Association, on their visit to London, were hospitably entertained at the house of a leading protestant dissenter, and were supported by the body generally in their demand for the restoration of their constitutional liberties. When those rights were at length conceded, protestant dissenters did not begrudge them the boon; but rejoiced to see the laws administered in the spirit of the constitution. When
• Speech delivered March 18th, at the meeting in Exeter Hall, to peli. tion parliament against the increase of the grant to the College at Maynooth.
several catholics were added to Her Majesty's privy council, they held no meetings, they signed no memorials nor petitions, to deplore this act of liberality and justice. They have ever claimed for the catholics, and they will ever claim for all their countrymen a fair equality in the rights of citizenship. But they protest now, as they have ever protested, against being compelled to pay for the support of any man's religion. They would not be compelled to pay even for their own. They object to the endowment of truth, and it is only consistent for them, therefore, to object to the endowment of error. Let it not be imagined that, because protestant dissenters are just and liberal to catholics, they are therefore tolerant of popery, and would be willing to pay for its support. They know but little of the spirit and feeling of the body who entertain such an imagination. We confess we never thought that popery was any other thing than our fathers found it. A false liberality has rendered statesmen unable to distinguish between the duty of protecting men in the exercise of their religious liberties, and of endowing their religion with state emoluments. We say, let the state protect the catholics, and let them have full liberty to propagate their creed, but let them have no endowment. As soon as a religion becomes endowed, it acquires an artificial power. It matters not whether the endowment be a state endowment or a private endowment, the principle is the same, and the effect is similar. An endowed church makes the zeal and liberality of a past age auxiliary to its present support, when otherwise it would die away and become extinct. It was a great error in protestant dissenters that they did not come forward, during the last session, and resist the passing of the ‘Charitable Donations and Bequests Act.” That act contains the germ of a Roman catholic establishment, and its simple operation will, in a few years, make the catholic church of Ireland an endowed church. That step towards the establishment of popery in Ireland has been already taken, and it is now proposed to follow it up, by a large endowment of the college at Maynooth. Our readers are aware that for the past fifty years, an annual grant of from eight to ten thousand pounds has been voted by parliament towards the support of this college; but, in order that the policy of the grant may not come annually under consideration, as at present, Sir Robert Peel has given notice of his intention to make a permanent provision for the institution, by a Bill which he will lay before parliament immediately after the recess. We say at once that, in our opinion, not only ought no increase to be made to the existing grant, but that the grant ought, henceforth to be entirely abandoned; and such we think will be the opinion of