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to have been made in consequence. The two chief objections of the catholics were to the exclusion of protestants, and the sons of protestants, from the college, and to the vesting the governing power in a body of trustees, appointed in the first instance under the Act itself. The former objection was not likely to have much effect on the protestant aristocracy of Ireland, who would not wish their sons to enjoy the privilege of a Maynooth education; and the latter was overcome by the appointment of a clear majority of catholic doctors in divinity as trustees, in addition to several catholic laymen.
After the house had been in committee on the Bill, notice was taken that its title differed from the leave given by the house for bringing in the same, the words of the order, and intended for the clerical ministry thereof,' being omitted. The Bill was in effect, therefore, a Bill for the better education of persons professing the Roman catholic religion, without reference to their being intended for the priestly office, or not; and this appears to have been the altered intention of the government. Leave was, therefore, given that the said Bill should be withdrawn; the order of the 23rd of April, above quoted, was discharged; and a new Bill, with the same title as the former one, was immediately introduced, and read the first and second time, and committed, on the same day, the 30th of April.
Whether or not the Bill originally introduced contained any money clause, we are unable to say, but the Bill now before the house does not appear to have contained any clause applying the public money in aid of the establishment of the college. This is proved by the following entry in the journals of the house :
May 6, 1795. • Ordered, That the committee of the whole house, to whom it is referred to take into consideration, a Bill for the Better Education of Persons professing the Popish or Roman Catholic Religion, be empowered to receive a clause for applying the sum of £8,000 (being part of £2,419,600 16s. 94d. granted to His Majesty this session of parliament) for the purposes of education.'
The Bill, so amended, passed both houses, without a division; and, on the 5th of June, 1795, good King George the Third, who would have laid down his crown rather than grant his catholic subjects the enjoyment of their civil rights, gave his assent to a Bill, the object of which was, to keep up a constant supply of two thousand priests to teach the doctrines, which, in his coronation oath, he declared to be 'superstitious and idolatrous.
Under this Act the College at Maynooth was established; and it is still in force, as well as two other statutes which have
been passed for the better government of the said college. But in order that we may show the more clearly the nature of the obligations which the legislature has undertaken, in the case of this institution, we shall now give a brief digest of these enactments, the titles of which we have placed at the head of this article: and we confidently believe we shall be able to demonstrate that, consistently with a due regard to the public faith, that institution may now be left entirely to its own resources.
We shall take the first of these acts, under which the college was established, as our basis; and append to its several clauses those changes which the subsequent statutes have introduced.
The preamble to this Act (25th Geo. III. c. 21) is as follows;"Whereas by the laws now in force in this kingdom, it is not lawful to endow any college or seminary for the education exclusively of persons professing the Roman catholic religion, and it is now become expedient that a seminary should be established for that purpose.' It then proceeds to enact, that the Lord Chancellor, or Lord Keeper, the Chief Justice of the King's Bench, the Chief Justice of the Common Pleas, the Chief Baron of the Exchequer, in Ireland, for the time being, together with the Earl of Fingall, Viscount Gormanstown, Vis. count Kenmare, Sir Ed. Bellew, Bart., Richard Strange, Esq., Sir Thomas French, Bart., and eleven reverend doctors in divinity,' (O'Reilly, Troy, Bray, Egan, Plunkett, Mac Davett, Moylan, Tehan, Delany, French, and Hussey,) and the persons to be hereafter elected, as by this Act is directed, shall be trustees for the purpose of establishing, endowing, and maintaining one academy, for the education only of persons professing the Roman catholic religion; and that the said trustees shall have full power and authority to receive subscriptions and donations to enable them to establish and endow an academy for the education of persons professing the Roman catholic religion, and to purchase and acquire lands, not exceeding the annual value of one thousand pounds, and to erect and maintain all such buildings as may be by the said trustees deemed necessary for the lodging and accommodation of the president, masters, professors, fellows, and students, who shall from time to time be admitted into, or reside in, such academy.' (By the statute, 40th Geo. III. c. 85, entitled An Act for the Better Government of the Seminary established at Maynooth, for the Education of Persons professing the Roman Catholic Religion, and for amending the Laws now in force respecting the said Seminary,' it is enacted (sect. 4) that the judges shall cease to be trustees, but that the other trustees, with their successors, shall continue trustees for the execution of the Act; and by the 48th Geo. III. c. 145,
8. 4, it is enacted that it shall be lawful for the trustees for the time being of the said college or academy, or any seven or more of them, to purchase and acquire lands, not exceeding in value the annual sum of one thousand pounds, exclusive of the value of the lands and premises held under the before-mentioned lease, from William Robert, late Duke of Leinster, and the buildings erected thereon, or hereafter to be erected, and used for the purposes of the said college or academy.'
Sect. 2. enacts, That any popish ecclesiastic may officiate in a chapel or building to be appointed for that purpose by any seven or more of the trustees.
Sect. 3. enacts, “That it shall and may be lawful for any seven or more of the trustees to appoint one president, and so many masters, fellows, professors, and scholars on the foundation, and ministers, servants and assistants of, and in the said academy, with such pensions, salaries, exhibitions, wages and allowances, as to them shall seem fit; and also to make such bye-laws, rules, regulations and statutes, for the government of the said academy, and for the education and government of all persons to be on the foundation thereof, or to be educated therein, and for the appointment and election of a president, masters, fellows, members and officers of the said academy, as to the trustees or any seven or more of them, shall seem meet; provided that the same shall not be contrary to law.'
Sect. 4. provides, That the bye-laws, &c., 'not affecting the exercise of the popish or Roman-catholic religion, and the religious discipline thereof,' shall be laid before the lord lieutenant, and shall be binding and valid, unless disapproved by him within one month; and, by the 48th Geo. III., c. 85, s. 7, it is enacted, that all bye-laws, &c. to be hereafter made shall, in order to be valid, be approved by the Lord Lieutenant, and transcribed on parchment, signed by the president of the college and secretary of the trustees, and lodged in the office of the chief secretary of the Lord Lieutenant, and it is provided, that all such bye-laws hereafter to be made shall be valid, unless disapproved of within a month, and that until such disapprobation shall have been expressed, all such bye-laws, rules, regulations, and statutes already made shall be deemed valid and of full force. By the 8th sect. it is enacted, that nothing in this Act is to extend to any bye-laws, &c affecting the exercise of the Roman-catholic religion, or the doctrine or discipline, or worship thereof, within the said college or seminary.'
Sect. 5. enacts, that seven or more of the said trustees shall have 'the superintendance and visitatorial power over the said academy, and over all persons on the foundation, or educated therein. But, by the 40th Geo. III., c. 85, s. 5, this power
taken away from the trustees, and the Lord Chancellor, or Lord Keeper, the Chief Justice of the King's Bench, the Chief Justice of the Common Pleas, the Chief Baron of the Exchequer, the Chancellor of the Exchequer and their successors for the time being, in Ireland, together with the Earl of Fingall, Dr. O’Reilly and Dr. Troy are 'appointed visitors of the said college orseminary, with full visitatorial powers to superintend the same.' (s. 1.) By the 2nd sect. of the same statute, it is enacted,
That the said visitors, or any three or more of them, shall once in every three years from the passing of this Act, visit the said college or seminary, and call before them the president, vicepresident, professors, tutors, and all other members thereof, and the officers and servants of the said college or seminary, and diligently inquire into the government and management of the said college or seminary, and, if necessary, examine on oath every member thereof in all matters touching the management, government, and discipline of the same, or any violation of the statutes or ordinances which have been or shall be made for the admission of any member of the said college or seminary, or for the government and discipline of the same, and that the first visitation of the said college shall be held as aforesaid within twelve months after the passing of this Act. The 3rd sect. enacts, that, in addition to the triennial visitations, the visitors shall make additional visitations whenever required by the warrant or order of the Lord Lieutenant; and provides 'that the authority of the said visitors shall not extend to or in any manner affect the exercise of the Roman Catholic religion, or the religious doctrine or discipline thereof, within the said college or seminary, otherwise than as hereinafter is provided, and that in visiting the said college or seminary the said visitors shall judge and determine according to such bye-laws, rules, and regulations, as have been or shall be made for the government and discipline thereof, pursuant to the provisions of the said recited Act (40th Geo. III., c. 21) or of this Act respectively.' The 9th sect. enacts, “ That in all matters which relate to the exercise, doctrine, and discipline of the Roman-catholic religion, the visitatorial power over such college shall be exercised exclusively by such of the said visitors as are or shall be of the Roman-catholic religion, in the presence of the Lord Chancellor, or Lord Keeper of the great seal, and of the three chief judges, and the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if they, or any of them, shall think proper to attend.' The 10th sect. enacts that, on the death of the Earl of Fingall, Dr. O'Reilly, or Dr. Troy, seven or more of the trustees shall, at their next meeting, elect a natural-born subject, being a Roman Catholic, as his successor ; subject, however, to the approbation of the Lord
Lieutenant ; ‘so that there shall be a continual succession of these fit and proper persons professing the Roman-catholic religion, as visitors of the said college.'
The 6th sect. enacts, that the trustees shall assemble within a month after the passing of the Act, and make rules for their assembling in future ; and that the acts of the majority of trustees so assembled at the said first meeting,' and of the trustees to be duly assembled at any future meeting,'shall be binding on, and be deemed the act of all the said trustees.'
The 7th sect. enacts, that any vacancies happening, by the death, removal, or resignation of a trustee, shall be filled up by the trustees electing a natural born subject to fill such vacancy.
The 8th sect. enacts, that no person shall act as a trustee, if he be a catholic, and that no person shall act as president, master, fellow, professor, teacher, tutor, or enjoy any place on the foundation, or be admitted into the college as a student, officer, or servant, until he shall have taken and subscribed the oath appointed by the 13th and 14th Geo. III., entitled, “An Act to enable His Majesty's subjects, of whatever persuasion, to testify their allegiance to him.
The 9th sect. enacts, ' that it shall not be lawful to receive into, or instruct in the said academy, any person professing the protestant religion, or whose father professed the protestant religion; and that any president, master, professor, or teacher, who shall instruct any person in the said academy, professing the protestant religion, shall remain liable to such pains and penalties, as he would have been liable to, before the passing of this Acti'
The 10th sect. enacts, 'that any sum or sums of money, not exceeding eight thousand pounds, part of the said sum of £2,449,600 16s. 9 d. shall and may be issued and paid by the Commissioners of His Majesty's Treasury, or any three or more of them, towards establishing the said academy.'
The ilth sect. enacts, that sums issued on the said account shall be paid to the trustees, and accounted for before the commissioners of imprest accounts.
The 6th sect. of the 40th Geo. III. c. 85, enacts, that the president of the college shall be approved by the Lord Lieutenant, and shall publicly make and subscribe an oath in the High Court of Chancery, that he will faithfully execute his office, enforce the bye-laws, &c, and that he will bear faithful and true allegiance, and to his utmost endeavours inculcate the duties of faithful and true allegiance to His Majesty King George the Third and his successors, in every member of the said college, or seminary.'