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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 i
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 Act.
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.'
The 11th sect. of the 40th Geo. III. c. 85, enacts, that the trustees may sue, and be sued, either at law or in equity, by and in the name of their secretary; and the 1st sect. of the 48th Geo. III. c. 145, enacts that it shall be lawful for the trustees 'to compromise and compound any suit or suits already commenced or hereafter to be commenced, relative to or concerning any property claimed by the said college or academy, or sought to be recovered from it,' on such terms as to them shall seem fit.
From this view of the law upon the subject, we think it will be evident to our readers, that the intention of the legislature was not permanently to maintain the college, but merely to legalise, and assist in its establishment. It was stated by his Grace the Duke of Wellington, then Sir Arthur Wellesley, in his place in Parliament, in the debate on the 29th of April, 1808, that
When the Maynooth institution was first established, it was not intended that it should be maintained by the public purse. The memorial presented previously to the foundation of that establishment prayed for a charter, in order that their funds might be better secured.'* Accordingly, the 25th Geo. III. was passed, which rendered the endowment of the institution lawful; and appointed trustees ' for the purpose of establishing, endowing, and maintaining' it. The trustees were empowered to receive subscriptions and donations to enable them to establish and endow an academy," and to purchase and acquire lands, not exceeding the annual value of one thousand pounds. The entire government of the college was given up into the hands of twenty-one trustees, the majority of whom were catholic doctors in divinity, and most of them, we believe, were catholic bishops. The trustees were authorised to elect their own successors, with the single exception of the four judges; and, in the first instance, they were also the visitors of the college; whereas nothing can be more evident to our minds than that, if it had been intended that the college should be maintained at the public expense, the government would have retained the management in the hands of its own nominees. There can be no doubt that the legislature intended to assist in its establishment; and accordingly it granted in four years the sum of £35,000, to aid in the erection of the college; but as soon as a proposition was made for a grant, though only for one year, for the maintenance of the college, that proposition was rejected by the legislature.
We have seen already that the first grant was of the sum of eight thousand pounds' towards establishing the said academy. In the succeeding year, 1797, the Irish House of
* Hansard's Parliamentary Debates v. xi. p. 91.
Commons, came to the following resolution, in the committee of the whole house (See the Journals, 24th Feb.)
Resolved, that it is the opinion of this committee that a sum of £7000 be granted to the trustees appointed to carry into effect an Act passed last session for the Better Education of Persons professing the Popish or Roman-catholic Religion, to enable them to build u seminary to contain two hundred persons under certain regulations.' In the next year we find the following:
25th Feb., 1797. * Resolved, that it is the opinion of this committee, that a sum of £10,000 be given to the trustees appointed to carry into effect an Act passed in the session of 1775, for the Better Education of Persons professing the Popish, or Roman-catholic Religion, to enable them to complete the building of the catholic seminary at Maynooth, and for other purposes.' In 1798, the resolution adopted was :
*1 March, 1798. • Resolved, That it is the opinion of this committee, that a sum of £10,302. 5s. be given to the trustees appointed to carry into effect an Act passed in the thirty-fifth year of His present Majesty's reign, for the Better Education of Persons professing the Popish or Roman Catholic Religion, to enable them to complete the building of the catholic seminary at Maynooth, and for other purposes.'
Up to the year 1799, the grants appear to have been voted with a view to assist in the establishment of the college; but in that year we find the following record in the journals of the Irish House of Commons, which we print verbatim.
Feb. 16th 1799. A petition of the trustees appointed to carry into execution the Act of Parliament, entitled, 'An Act for the Better Education of Persons professing the Popish or Roman-catholic Religion, 'was presented to the House and read, setting forth, that petitioners with profound gratitude acknowledge the munificent support granted them by the House, by which they have been enabled to give effect to the wise and liberal views of Parliament, in providing the necessary accommodation, and in every respect accomplishing the full establishment of the seminary, agreeably to the statements submitted to the House, that petitioners express their firm reliance on the benevolence of the House, and their strong hope that the institution entrusted to them, become now efficient, will be found to contribute to the general prosperity of the kingdom, by diffusing the blessings of morality and religion throughout a large portion of its inhabitants, among whom a more faithful attachment to government, and a more dutiful submission to the laws must be naturally looked for from the zealous exertions of instructors, who in the inculcation of these important duties must feel themselves urged by a strong impulse of gratitude to enforce and illustrate the general principles on which these duties are