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ought to be suffered to remain untouched was well known all such instructions were and undecided in the adjustment of so sent in the name and by the command of momentous a concern.
the King. Viscount Stormont proceeded to state Earl Stanhope expressed his anxious why he thought the two opinions that had wish, that what the House had that day been propounded in the last debate might heard from the Duke of York could have be reconciled. As it was then publicly been given in writing, so as to have been known what was the intention of govern made, in some way or other, matter of rement with regard to the regency, which cord. It was too important a communicahe reminded their lordships was a circum- tion to be suffered to remain in fleeting stance not known to the House when they words, which could not be handed down had last discussed the subject, his opinion to posterity for them to quote as a proof was, that they should forthwith proceed to of the existence of an essential part of declare the Prince of Wales sole Regent. the constitution. At present, with a dismembered legisla- The Duke of Gloucester rose, and after ture, the country stood in a situation in stating the peculiar unpleasantness of his which it ought to be suffered to remain as own situation, and declaring that it was short a time as possible. As it was neces only four hours since he had heard that sary, according to all their opinions, to any thing was to be agitated upon the proceed to practical measures, it ill became subject that day, deprecated the discussion them to waste the time in agitating of a question, which could only tend to protheoretical speculations. Of that nature duce the most mischievous consequences. was the question of right, which, in his He declared himself a mere individual, not mind, it was equally idle and fruitless to influenced by party, but actuated by a discuss. He remonstrated against delay, sincere love of his country, and a strong and asked the House, if they wished to sense of what he knew would be his Mafollow the example of that whimsical set | jesty's feelings, were he happily to recover of philosophers who, when Mahomet the from his present lamented indisposition. second scaled the walls of Constantinople, His royal highness trusted, that the good and took the city by storm, were actually sense and loyalty of a majority in each made prisoners in the act of sitting in de- House, would yet prevent the threatened bate upon fruitless metaphysical specula decision on this point. Perseverance in tions and frivolous inquiries. He thought it was mischievous to the last degree, and it behoved them to proceed to declare the could not be meant for the public good. Prince sole regent, and, as all the royal Por his part, he felt“ so strongly on the prerogatives were allowed to the sovereign, subject, that if the attempt was persisted not for his pleasure or satisfaction, but in, and the question brought before that with a view to the good of the subject, to House, he could only say, that he believed vest the Prince with them entirely. He he should not dare to trust himself to put the case of an affectionate father, who come forward and speak his sentiments on would wish his son's government to be the extraordinary conduct of those, who prosperous; to be prosperous it must be were unnecessarily inclined to compel a strong, and without every power which decision on so delicate a question. government ought to possess, it could not Lord Cathcart said, that the papers prove either prosperous or strong. Great pasted against the walls of the public must be the danger of continuing without streets, which had been alluded to by a a vigorous executive government. With noble lord, were not the only attempts to regard to the safety of the state from fo- inflame the minds of the multitude. Other reign enemies, he looked to the vigilance papers, replete with violence and falseof ministers, the force of the country, and hoods, and calculated to misrepresent the the friendly dispositions of the neighbour. conduct of ministers, and make it appear ing powers. A variety of reasons might that one of them brought himself forward be stated to prove the pressure of the as a competitor with the Prince of Wales, moment, and the urgency of the case. had been first pasted up, and distributed He particularly pointed out the anxious througb the cities of London and West. and unpleasant situation of lord Carmar- minster. He concluded with moving an then, as secretary of state for foreign af- adjournment; which was agreed to. fairs, who, for several weeks past, had not beert able to forward a single instruction Dec. 17. The Lord President of the to any of our ministers abroad, since it Council brought up the Report from the
Committee who had been appointed “to | liberty of submitting to them before he examine and report precedents of such offered the motion of adjournment, which proceedings as may have been had, in case was, that if his Majesty's illness should of the personal exercise of the Royal Au- unhappily continue, contrary to the wishes thority being prevented, or interrupted by and prayers of his people, longer than the infancy, sickness, infirmity, or otherwise, proposed period of a fortnight's adjournwith a view to provide for the same.” The ment, as it would be indispensably neces. Report was read by the clerk, and ordered sary for the House to take into their imto lie on the table, and be printed. mediate consideration what measures were
proper to be adopted, in order, as far as Proceedings in the House of Commons on they were competent, to endeavour to the King's Illness. Nov. 20. The House guard against the dangers which might met, and as soon as Mr. Chancellor Pitt had arise from the not being able to open the taken his seat the Speaker rose at the session in the usual form, so it would be table, and observed, that, as he believed equally incumbent on them to ensure as no new commission had been issued for full an attendance as he then saw, in order the farther prorogation of parliament, he to give the proceeding, whatever it might wished to know whether it was the pleasure be, all the weight and solemnity in their of the House that he should take the chair? power, to contribute towards supplying A general call of Chair! chair! immedi- the deficiency of the royal proclamation. ately prevailed; in consequence of which, He, therefore, submitted to the considera. the Speaker went to his seat, from whence tion of the House the propriety of a mohe stated to the House what writs had tion, which, with their consent, he should been issued by him during the recess. offer for a call of the House on that day The new members then took the oaths; fortnight; and that the call might be renand when they had all been severally dered as effectual as possible, he should sworn,
accompany it with another motion, directMr. Pitt rose and said, that consistently ing the Speaker to write circular letters, with his duty, he must beg leave to inform requiring the attendance of every member the House, that the cause of their being on that day fortnight. He would now thus assembled, without the usual sum- move, “ 1. That the House, at its rising, mons and notice that they were to meet adjourn to that day fortnight. 2. That for the dispatch of business, upon the the House be called over on the 4th of commission for the last prorogation of December. 3. That the Speaker be diparliament expiring, was owing to the rected to send circular letters, requiring contingency of the unfortunate illness with the attendance of every member on that which his Majesty had been severely af- day.” The House agreed to these moflicted, and which had prevented his ser- tions neni. con., and, upon the question vants from receiving his commands. He put, adjourned to that day fortnight. ' added, that the few authorities which existed, and which were at all similar in Dec. 4. The House being met, pur. their application to the present singular suant to adjournment and the Speaker situation of affairs, had been consulted ; having taken the chair, Mr. Pitt presented but, as they did not pomt out the pos- a report of the examination of the King's sibility of issuing a new commission for physicians, taken the preceding day. upon the farther prorogation of parliament, nor oath, by the privy council, relative to the enable them to open the session in the state of his Majesty's health. This report usual form, nor indeed in any way at all was read at the table by the clerk, and was regular, he trusted that every gentleman in substance as follows: Dr. Warren's opiwould agree with him, that, under the nion, as deduced from the questions put to present circumstances, it would be highly him by the privy council was, that his improper for the House to proceed to the Majesty was at present incapable of attenddiscussion of any public business what-ing to public business; that there was' ever, and that it was absolutely necessary great probability that his Majesty would, for them to adjourn. He meant, there in time be able to resume his share in the fore, before he sat down, to submit to government of the country; but that he their consideration a motion for the ad- could not say when such an event was to journment of the House, at, its rising, to be expected. His opinion was founded on. that day fortnight. One more point, and personal experience, and consultation with one more point only, he should take the other physicians. Sir George Baker, sir,
Lucas Pepys, and Dr. Reynolds were se- 1 privy council, had been taken upon oath, verally of the same opinion. Dr. Adding which could not be the case if they were ton was still more sanguine in his hopes of to be examined at the bar of the House. his Majesty's recovery, as he had seldom | Mr. Fox said, that however willingly he or ever known cases attended by such acquiesced in the steps that had been symptoms as he had discovered in his taken in this melancholy business, he still Majesty, fail of a happy termination. had his doubts whether gentlemen ought · Mr. Pitt then moved, “ That the said to rest satisfied without the personal exareport be taken into consideration on Mon. mination of those physicians, on whose day next.” At the same time, he gave testimony they were to found consenotice, that on that day he would move quences of the utmost importance. They that a committee should be appointed to would, no doubt, all feel it necessary to search for precedents in any degree ap- act with every possible delicacy in the plicable to the present melancholy state course of their proceedings; but, at the of public affairs, and report them to the same time, if delicacy and their duty should House. The awful magnitude of the pre- happen to clash, the one ought not to be sent crisis, called for the most serious de- / sacrificed to the other. liberation ; and the House could not, in The question was then agreed to nem. his opinion, proceed with too much solem- con. nity, or be too cautious in its determina- The Speaker now expressed his doubts, tions, in a business of such moment as was whether, during the inefficiency of one that which must shortly be brought before branch of the legislature, he was compethem.
tent to issue writs for filling up the vacan. • Mr. Vyner sincerely lamented the me. cies that should happen in the representalancholy occasion which rendered such a tion of the people in that House. It was motion necessary, and believed every the present vacancy in the borough of Colman in the country was truly concerned chester, occasioned by the death of sir at so dreadful a circumstance. A report Edmund Affleck, that first suggested to taken by the privy council was undoubt him the grounds of those doubts. edly entitled to great weight, but he ques. Mr. Pitt was decidedly of opinion, that tioned whether it suited the dignity of par. though no act could take place which rebiament, that such a report should be made quired the joint concurrence of the difthe ground work of a parliamentary pro- ferent branches of the legislature, yet ceeding. He felt himself at a loss to deter- each of them in its separate capacity was mine whether that House could, or ought fully competent to the exercise of those to take the report of the council as the powers which concerned its own orders guide of its conduct; he was rather inclined and jurisdiction. to think Wat it ought to order the attend- The House then adjourned. dance of his Majesty's physicians, and hear them examined at the bar, before any Dec. 8. Mr. Pitt rose, and having definal measure should be proposed or sired permission to offer some necessary adopted. This, however, he threw out only remarks to the consideration of the House, as his private opinion; the House would previous to their entering upon the disjudge for itself.
eussion of the order of the day, added that, Mr. Pitt said, that nothing could be on the preceding Thursday when the farther from his intention, than to preclude motion had been made, “ That the minute any measure which the House might, in of the examination of the physicians who its wisdom think necessary to adopt, for bad attended his Majesty during his illness, the purpose of procuring the most ample as delivered upon oath before the Lords inforination. He was of opinion, however, of the Council, be that day taken into that when gentlemen reflected upon the consideration,” some gentlemen had endelicacy of the subject, and the dignity of tertained doubts, whether that would be the great personage to whose state of the proper way to found a parliamentary health the report referred, they would proceeding: and he had, at the time, think with him that the mode pursued hinted an idea, that the examination hav. by the privy council was precisely that ing been taken on oath would be suffiwhich ought to have been adopted, and cient; but he had spoken on the impulse which parliament miglıt, without suffering of the moment, and was exceedingly dethe least infringement of its dignity, pursue. sirous that the mode of proceeding should The examination of the playsicians, by the be perfectly satisfactory to the House in
general. He wished to know if it was the tory to proceed in that way; and indeed, sense of any number of gentlemen, that a the circumstance of two more physicians particular inquiry before a Committee of having been called in, appeared to him to their own House would be a more regular amount to a strong reason for such a proway of proceeding, and whether the com-cedure. Unless, therefore, he heard some munication already made from the privy objection to that idea, he would take the council of their minutes, was not deemed liberty of moving, “ T'hat a committee be fully sufficient. He should also beg leave appointed to examine the physicians who to state to the House, that, since their last have attended his Majesty, touching the meeting, two more physicians had been state of his health, and report such ex. called in to attend his Majesty, one of amination to the House." whom was peculiarly skilled in the treat- Mr. Powys said, that the appointment ment of cases similar to that under which of such a committee appeared to him to his Majesty unfortunately laboured. These be the only way by which the House additional physicians had also been ex could obtain proper intelligence for them amined before the privy council; but pos. to proceed upon, and he was glad that it sibly their having been called in might, by came 'recommended by such high au. some gentlemen, be considered as another thority; but he entertained his doubts, and a cogent reason, for appointing a whether the House could go farther on Committee of the House to examine the | that day, than agreeing to the appointphysicians. He had therefore thought it ment of a committee. He explained himhis duty to throw out these suggestions, self to mean, that it had better be a joint that the House might signify their sense committee of the two Houses, not only upon them; and also if any gentleman or to make the proceeding the conjoint act any number of gentlemen, should be of of both, but as he had found, from the opinion that it would be more satisfactory examination of precedents of former pro, to appoint a Committee, whether by an ceedings of an analogous nature, that the instruction to the said Committee, they deficiency of the evidence given before a might' not be empowered to search for committee of that House singly (who precedents, as well as to examine the phy- could not administer an oath) was cured sicians, since on such an occasion as the by the witnesses to be examined before à present, it would certainly be expedient to joint committee, being all sworn at the proceed with all dispatch consistent with bar of the House of Lords. the solemnity of the subject. Mr. Pitt Mr. Pitt said, he believed the mode of concluded with moving, “ That the order proceeding suggested by the hon. gentleof the day be read.” This being done, man had been adopted, but for a long
Mr. Vyner said, that what had fallen time abandoned, and he doubted whether from the right hon. gentleman struck him it would not be advisable, in the present as rather extraordinary. The right hon. instance, to avoid recurring to it, as it gentleman talked of collecting the sense might possibly cause much difficulty or of the House. He wished to be informed delay. He knew the instance to which how he could collect the sense of the the hon. gentleman referred; but he did House, without some motion for that pur- | not believe there were four instances on pose.
the Journals; and the mode of constitutMr. Pitt said, he had thrown out his ing a joint committee, in those instances, former suggestions merely for the consi. had been to appoint double the number of deration of the House, and therefore did not members of that House, in proportion to think it at all extraordinary to do it in the the number of peers. He doubted much mode that he had adopted. He perfectly whether the Lords would consent to the well knew, that there was not any way of appointment of a committee so constituted, collecting the sense of the House fully and and therefore, as it must be extremely formally, but by a motion ; but what he desirable that no difference should arise had endeavoured to find out, was solely, between the two Houses, he thought it whether it was the general opinion, or the more prudent to appoint a committee of opinion of any number of gentlemen that their own, and act upon their report, it would be desirable to have an examina. Mr. Burke said, that he rose not to tion of the physicians, who had attended controvert any one point in the right hon. bis Majesty, before a committee. From the gentleman's argument, nor even to excite; silence which prevailed, he had been led a doubt concerning any point which he to conceive that it would be more satisfac- had advanced, but merely to enter his (VOL. XXVII.]
protest, which he must ever do on any | lows; viz. The Chancellor of the Exche occasion, against what the right hon. gen- quer, lord North, Mr. W. W. Grenyille, tleman had stated on a former day, and Mr. Fox, the Master of the Rolls, Mr. F. just hinted at that day, though, indeed, Montagu, Attorney-general, Mr. Vyner, he had not much rested on it, and that Mr. Dundas, Mr. Powys, Solicitor genewas, the inefficacy of an examination be- ral, Mr. Sheridan, Mr. Hussey, Lord Ad. fore that House, because they had not vocate of Scotland, marquis of Graham, the power to administer an oath to wit- lord Belgrave, sir Grey Cooper, Mr. Wil. nesses. He never would suffer that to be berforce, Mr. Windham, Mr. P. Yorke; made an argument against the House pro- and earl Gower. ceeding in its inquisitorial capacity, without resisting so dangerous a doctrine. Dec. 10. Mr. Pitt presented the report Maimed and imperfect, cramped and of the Committee, appointed to examine limited as the House might be in some the physicians who have attended his Maparticulars, he conjured them to preserve jesty, touching the state of his health, and all their capacities, and most especially to report such examination to the House. was it necessary for them to hold their The Report was as follows: capacities sacred, and maintain them with
REPORT. firmness in situations of extreme delicacy
The Committee appointed to examine and importance, and such he considered the present to be. He reminded them,
the physicians who have attended his that in questions of the highest judicial
Majesty, during his illness, touching
the state of his Majesty's health; and importance, affecting considerations of the first magnitude, the House had never
to report such examination to the satisfied itself, but on the examination of
House ; have, pursuant io the order
of the House, proceeded to examine witnesses at their own bar, ór, what he considered as the same thing, before a
the said physicians; which examina, committee of their own members, ap
tion is as follows: pointed by the House, and acting as their Dr. Richard Warren called in, and exas representative. He stated the case of a
: mined. divorce bill, which, as they well knew, Whether, in his opinion, the state of his always originated in the Spiritual Court Majesty's health is, or is not, such as to in Doctors' Commons, where all the pro- render his Majesty incapable, either of ceedings were upon oath ; it next travelled coming to parliament, or of attending to to Westminster-hall, where the witnesses public business ? -His Majesty's state of also delivered their evidence upon oath, health is such as to render him incapable and they were afterwards heard at the bar of coming to parliament, or attending of the House of Lords upon oath likewise; public business, and after that triple knot of evidence What hopes has Dr. Warren of his Malegally given, it was customary, when the jesty's recovery? --The hopes of his Ma. Bill came down to that House, for the jesty's recovery must depend on the pro. House to disregard all that had passed, bability of cure; and that can only be and to ground their proceedings with re-judged of by what has happened to others gard to the Bill, on the evidence of the in similar cases ; and as the majority of witnesses examined at their own bar, ac- others have recovered, there is a probabi. cording to their own forms. The more lity that his Majesty may recover likewise. arduous, delicate, and difficult the business Can Dr. Warren form any judgment, that came before the House was, the more or probable conjecture, of the time which tenacious they ought to be of their privi. his Majesty's illness is likely to last? leges and capacities, and in order to en- | No.' force that, it was, that he had risen; not What degree of experience has Dr. to object to any of the principles or infe- Warren had of the particular species of rences of the right hon. gentleman, but disorder with which his Majesty is afilicted? merely to question one of his premises, In the course of 27 or 28 years practice,
which, in his mind, called for observation. I have seen many persons disordered in a ... Mr. Pitt then moved the question, manner similar to that of his Majesty; « That a Committee be appointed, and some have soon recovered under my sole that the Committee consist of twenty-one care ; when that has not happened, I have members.” This being agreed to, he next always called in the persons who make proceeded to name the Committce as fol. this branch of medicine their particular