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Westminster Hall. Soon after his return, he procured an introduction to Wilberforce, and immediately entered, with characteristic zeal, into the great work to which the former had devoted his powers. He was prepared for this from the fact, that such was his abhorrence of slavery, that he never owned a slave during his protracted residence in the West Indies. He subsequently married the sister of Mr. Wilberforce. He consecrated his vigorous pen to the cause of Abolition, and contributed much to create that public sentiment which demanded the abrogation of the traffic. At the solicitation of Mr. Perceval, he entered Parliament in 1808, where he remained seven or eight years. Always conscientious in the discharge of his political duties, he refused to support the administration which followed that of Perceval, in consequence of their neglect to promote a measure, which he had anxiously pressed upon them, for the registration of slaves in the West Indies. He soon after resigned his seat, and devoted himself more exclusively to the duties of a master in chancery, to which office he had been appointed in 1811, and which he held twenty years. He was the means of introducing several reforms in the practice of the court of chancery, though by so doing he essentially lessened his own emoluments. instance of his disinterestedness, it may be mentioned that he forbade his clerk to take the ordinary gratuities, and remunerated him for his loss out of his own pocket to the amount of about £800 a year.

What time he could spare from his official duties was devoted to the abolition of the slave trade by foreign States, and of slavery in the West Indies. Besides numerous pamphlets, occasional speeches, and an extensive correspondence on these subjects, he published an admirable legal work, entitled, “Slavery of the British West India Colonies Delineated,” the plan of which has apparently been followed by Judge Stroud, of Philadelphia, in a work of equal ability, on American slavery. Mr. Stephen descended to his honored grave in 1832, at the advanced age of 75.

As an

MR. MACAULAY is the father of the brilliant essayist and historian whose writings are so well known in this country. And it is high praise to say that, as a writer, he is the worthy progenitor of such a descendant; for, though his publications fall short in beauty and splendor of those of his celebrated son, they are equal to bis in logical acumen and argumentative power. Though younger in years than Stephen, Macaulay's services in the abolition of the slave trade were equal to his, while those in the cause of West India emancipation far transcended his.

The Life of Wilberforce, published by his sons, in 1838, was thought to have done injustice to the early labors of Clarkson in the abolition of the slave trade. An unpleasant controversy at once arose, as to the relative merits of these philanthropists, and especially in reference to their agency in promoting the abolition An anecdote was told to me in London respecting the matter, which illustrates one of the idiosyncrasies in the mental constitution of another early and steadfast Abolitionist-HENRY BROUGHAM—who, though young at the period of the abolition, had, while traveling on the continent, assisted Wilberforce by pursuing various inquiries in Holland; Germany, Poland, and other countries, in regard to the traffic. Some of the particulars of the story are forgotten, but enough are remembered for the present purpose. Soon after the appearance of the Life, the friends of Clarkson caused a book to be prepared, vindicating his services and claims, to which Brougham agreed to furnish an introduction. The body of the work was in press before the ex-chancellor, pressed with multifarious labors, had prepared his paper. The committee having the matter in charge waited upon him, and stated that the publication was delayed for want of his introduction, that country booksellers and anti-slavery societies were impatient to have their orders filled, &c. Brougham told them he had not written a line of it, but would have it completed by a given day of the same week. At the appointed time the committee

called, and he read the paper. What was their mortification to find incorporated into the middle of it a ferocious attack on Daniel O'Connell, the very man upon whom they were relying to help carry through the Commons the bill then pending for the abolition of the apprenticeship in the West Indies, and with whom they had had an interview on the subject that very morning. Here was a dilemma! They expostulated with Brougham ; explained the ruinous consequences to the cause, of their sanctioning such an attack on O'Connell ; and while they did not wish to interfere with the controversy between him and O'Connell, assured him that for them to issue such a publication at that crisis might seal the fate of the apprenticeship bill—nor could they send out the work without his introduction, without disappointing the public. After rather an exciting interview, Brougham dismissed them by peremptorily declaring, “they must take it as it was, or not at all.” They left in despair. The next day, one of the committee called, to see if something could not be done to get over the difficulty, when lo, his lordship handed him the paper with the offensive passage omitted. The secret of the alteration was this : The night after the first interview, Brougham went down to the House of Peers, and “ pitching into the debate, castigated some half dozen of the lords spiritual and temporal to his heart's content, and, having thus worked off “ the slough of his passion,” returned home in a calmer mood, and blotted the obnoxious paragraph from his Introduction.

CHAPTER VIII.

Law Reform-Jeremy Bentham-His Opinion of the Common Law-His

Felicity" Principle-His Universal Code--His Works—The Fruits of his Labors-His Talents and Character.

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THE father of Modern Law Reform was JEREMY BENTHAM. This singular person has been often sneered at by Americans, who knew nothing of him or his writings, except that he lived somewhere in Europe, and was called “a visionary foreign philosopher” by the North American Review. He was the constant theme of ridicule for a large class of Englishmen, who only cared to know that he was said to be an eccentric old man, who shunned the world, admitted his guests to dine one at a time, wore an uncouth garb, was an abominable sloven, turned wooden bowls on a lathe and run in his garden for exercise, relieved the tedium of study by playing now on a fiddle and then on an organ, heated his house by steam, slept in a sack, looked very much like Ben. Franklin, did not believe in rotten boroughs or rotten creeds, did believe in free trade in corn and money, thought the common law the perfection of absurdity, Lord Eldon's court a libel on equity, and wrote codes for all creation to use in the twenty-ninth century.

Mr. Bentham was one of the most remarkable men that has appeared in our age. He was born in 1747, and was descended from a race of attorneys. At the age of five, the family called him “ the philosopher;" at eight he played well on the violin, on which he afterwards became a proficient; and at thirteen went to Oxford, where he excited admiration and wonder by his acute observations, logical skill, and precision of language. When he took his degree, he was esteemed the first reasoner and philosophical critic in the University. He was at Oxford when Wesley and the “ Methodists” were expelled, and his generous soul took up arms against this tyranny. This induced him to examine the thirty-nine articles of the Church, one by one ; and when it became necessary for him to subscribe them, long was the struggle before Bentham could bring his hand to do it. He has left on record a rebuke of this test, which ought to consign it to universal condemnation. At Oxford, he attended the law lectures of Blackstone, (being the substance of his Commentaries,) and his clear mind detected the fallacies in his reasoning, and his humane and honest spirit revolted at many of his eulogiums on the Common Law of England.

The Bar, to which he was admitted in 1772, opened a brilliant prospect before him. His precise and acute method of drafting equity and law pleadings was much extolled, and his refusal to receive the usual fees excited no less attention. A sharp solicitor swelled a swindling bill of costs in a case in which Bentham had succeeded-he protested—“Quirk” told him it was made up according to the rules, and he would lose caste if he altered it. Bentham was disgusted, resolved to quit the profession, and spend his life in “ endeavoring,” as he expressed it, “ to put an end to the system, rather than profit by it.” To the grasping pertinacity of this solicitor, the world is indebted for the sixty years' labor of Jeremy Bentham in the cause of law reform. Soon after this, he published his first work, “ A Fragment on Government; being an examination of what is delivered on that subject in Blackstone's Commenta

He then visited Paris, where he became intimate with Brissot, through whose agency, and without his knowledge, he was subsequently made a citizen of the French Republic, and elected a member of the second National Assembly.

His father died in 1792, leaving him a moderate fortune,

ries."

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