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about to depart to its celestial abode, he | WILLIAM Smith, Esq. M. P. in the Chairy observed, in contemplating the existing The Chairman made a report of the state of the country, whose welfare and proceedings of the Committee npon Lord happiness was the only care of his life, Sidmouth's Bill, fately brought into the that his Noble Relative (Lord WELLING- House of Lords; intituled, " An Act to exTON) was one of those Officers to whom plain and render more effectual' certain his successors might look with confidence Acts of the first year of the reign of King for services calculated to produce perma: William and Queen Mary, and of the 19th nent advantage to the State. (Great and year of the reign of his present Majesty, reiterated applause.)
so far as the same relate to Protestant Disor A new song upon our late victories was senting Ministers.' now finely sung by Mr. Taylor.
Resolved, That this Deputation; in conToast—" Marshal Beresford, and the formity with the deep interest which they brave Portuguese · Army" - with three must always feel in every question affecttimes three-Wain, universal, and reite-ing the civil and religious concerns of the rated applause.
Protestant Dissenters, do, in the names of « General Graham and the heroes of those by whom they are deputed, offer to Barrosa,” with three times three-Drank their brethren throughout the kingdom; with enthusiastic applause.
their sincere congratulations on the rejec“ General Blake, and the gallant Army tion of the abovementioned - Bill; and es. of Spain,”-Universal and reiterated ap- pecially as connected with the opinion so plause.
generally expressed in the House of Lords, Song-Britons strike home.
of the inexpediency and injustice of inToast-" The immortal memory of the fringing on the liberty of the subject in Hero, whose glorious efforts in the service religious matters. of his Country were called into action by Resolved, That the thanks of this Dee Mr. Pitt-Lord Nelson.”—In solemn si putation be gratefully offered to the Mar. lence.
quis of Lansdowne, to Earl Stanhope, Eart Song- Briton's best Bulwark.
Moira, Earl Grey ; to Lord Holland, and Toast_" The health of the Chairman,” to Lord Erskine, for their able and distinproposed by the Lord Chancellor, in a guished support of the cause of the Disneat speech, and drank with the most un senters, and of the great and important bounded applause, and long continued principles of Religious Liberty, inibe Decheers.
bate on the Bill lately introduced by Lord Mr. Lascelles returned thanks in a Sidmouth into the House of Lords. very elegant speech, which was raptu. Resolved, That the thanks of this De rously applauded.
putation be given to all those Members of « The Pitt CLUB; and success, prospe: that Right Honourable House, who cority, and permanent continuance to it," proposed by Mr. Perceval, and drank win operated in rejecting the said Bill.
Resolved, That this Deputation are ex. enthusiasm and ecstatic acclamations. A tremely happy in the opportunity of ex Member returned thanks in an appropriate pressing their high satisfaction, at the just speech.
and liberal sentiments respecting the right of private judgment in religious matters,
delivered in that debate by his Grace the DISSENTERS' MEETING. Archbishop of Canterbury.
Resolved, Thai an Address to the ProAt a General Meeting of the Deputies testant Dissenters of England and Wales, appointed for protecting the civil rights now read, be approved. of the Protestant Dissenters, held at the Resolved, That the said Address be King's Head Tavern, in the Poultry, Lon- signed by the Chairman, and printed for don, the 28th of May, 1811.
(To be continued.)
Published by R. BAGSHAW, Brydges-Street, Covent - Garden :-Sold also by J. BUDD, Pall-Alalle
LONDON :-tinted by T: C. Hansard, Peterborough-Court, Floet-Street,
.“ We have reason to believe, that the alarms, bad been excited and inflamed for the special purpose * of checking the disposition of the country in favour of reform, and of calumniating the characters t" of those who promoted it."-Address from the FRIENDS OF THE PEOPLE, 25th May, 1793. 1377)
[1378 SUMMARY OF POLITICS.
ble 11th of May, 1809, together with the
decision of the House upon the motion PARLIAMENTARY Reform.--The long. then made by that gentleman; if the expected Meeting for the prosecution of reader thinks, that these are proofs of the this great object is to take place on Mon- contrary of amendment, then he must say, day next, the 10th of June, and, therefore, that there is more necessity of reform now, this seems to me to be a proper occasion than there was in 1793,; and he will, of for making some observations upon the course, have a right to ask Earl Grey, subject. It is one of the means used by Mr. Tierney, and otbers, what can be the the enemies of Reform to represent it as reason of their present silence upon the something newly thought of; something subject; and, indeed, how it came to pass, that nobody of any weight or consequence that they did nothing in the way of reform, in the country ever thought of; something when they were in place and power. But, that has existence only in the mind's of let us now go back a little and see what demagogues and visionaries. I have, have been the effects, or, at least, some of therefore, in this Number, inserted two the effects, of the want of reforın. -For documents, in which, from the present many years previous to 1792, there had conduct of some men, one would hardly been a conviction in the minds of all disbelieve in the existence. I mean, the interested men, that a reform of the Com. Address of the “ Friends of the People" to mons' House of Parliament was necessary the People of Great Britain, in 1792; and to the well-being of the nation. This had the Petition of the same Association to the been declared, in the most solemo manner, House of Commons, in 1793. These do. by many of the greatest men in the kingcuments originated with, and were put dom. Indeed, there was scarcely a man forth by, some of the men, who still make distinguished for his superior wisdom and a figure in politics; for instance, the public spirit who had not declared it. Duke of Bedford (then Lord J. Russell), But, in 1792, when the French Revolution Mr. Sheridan, Mr. Whitbread, Earl Grey had set men's minds at work, it became (then Mr. Grey), Mr. Tierney, Lord Lau- more evident, that something in the way derdale, Sir Arthur Pigot, Mr. Dudley of reformn was necessary, in order to preNorth, General Tarleton, Sir Ralph Mil- vent the people of England from seek bank, and many others, amongst whom ing for redress though the means of were 27 Members of Parliament, and of revolution, as the people of France had done. the other Gentlemen not in Parliament, -The subject was, therefore, revived Sir John Throckmorton, who is the Chair- with great zeal and ability by the Society man of the Committee for calling the pre- of Gentlemen, who took the name of Bent Meeting, was one. And, as to the “ Friends of the People, associated for Paition, it was presented to the House of " the purpose of procuring a ParliaCommons by Mr. Grey, now Earl Grey.
mentary Reform.' At the same time, Let the reader, then, when he has there were other Societies; the Society gone through these documents, ask him for Constitutional Information ; the Cora elf, whether the representation has been responding Society; and some others, amended since that time ; and, if he finds the object of the whole of which appears hat it has, then he will, of course, be of to have been the procuring of a reform in opinion, that reform may possibly be un- the Commons' House, and upon the same aecessary; but, if he finds that it has not, principles as those set forth in the Petind if he thinks that the facts brought to tion of the Friends of the People. Eght by Mr. Maddocks, on the memora- Pitt, the Minister, who had been one of
the loudest in the cause of Reform, and be impossible. The 3rd was adopted who had, by that very means, gained the by Pitt and his colleagues; and, of the popularity that enabled him to retain his consequences we are now tasting, and our place as Minister in spite of the Aristo children's children will taste. That cracy, was now become the enemy of that this was the real suurce of the war cause; and was disposed to do all that there can be no doubt in the mind of lay in his power against it. But, the any man of sense, who looks back to cause was now more formidable than it what passed in the years 1792 and had ever been before. The French, a 1793. There unquestionably was, on people who had always been, by the the part of the French revolutionists, English, considered as slaves, had now the most ardent desire to remain at peace declared themselves free; they had abo- and upon good terms with England. The lished the feudal system in France, and proofs of this are so clear and convincing, all the artificial inequalities amongst that it is impossible for any man, capable men ; they had curtailed the power of of judging, to entertain a doubt upon the their sovereign, and, from an absolute subject. They put up with slights and afdespot, had reduced him to a first magis- fronts of all sorts from our government ; trate with known and determinate pow- and did not, at last, declare war 'till after ers.—This was a change that could they saw that it was resolved on that they not fail to produce great effect upon should not have peace upon any terms. the minds of Englishmen, and especial. The king of France, who was put to ly as the French, in their new consti- death in January, 1793, and who assurtution, had proceeded upon the principles edly owed his death, at that time, to the of the English constitution, those very conduct of those who called themselres principles for which the Reformers had his friends, had sent a Minister to Eag. been so long contending in vain. The land, and this Minister was sent out of the French people had declared, and it had country by order of the government in become a fundamental law of France, that same month of January. After tbis that no man should be laxed without his own it was impossible that war could be avoidconsent ; that this consent should be given ed. Indeed, it was, in most respects, war by representatives ; and that, in the choos- before ; for, there was an Alien Act and ing of these representatives, every man who an Act against passing French assignats, long paid taxes should have a voice. This was previous to the sending away of the the grand point, for which the Reformers French Minister. And, in short, it was in England had been so long contending; as clear as daylight, that the government and, for which they had so long contended of England was resolved not to be upon in vain against the Borough patronage friendly terms with the revolutionary goand influence. It was no wonder, vernment of France. And why not? therefore, that they hailed the Freneh Why, the reason alledged was, that, if we Revolution; that they applauded it; had peace and a free communication with that they discovered a strong partiality France, there would be also a communifor the persons engaged in io; and that cation of French principles. This was they endeavoured by all the means in openly avowed ; and, not only in news their power, to assist and uphold the papers and pamphlets, but in speeches is cause of the Revolutionists in France, parliament, the war was asserted to be abwhich cause, for a length of time, was the solutely necessary upon this ground. Upon cause of the Reformers in England. this ground the war was justified; and, The ministry in England, and the wbole indeed, every act of the government, wheof the Borough faction, could not fail to ther affecting the liberty of speech and be alarmed at this. It was, indeed, quite the press, or liberty in any other way, was clear, that one of these things must take defended upon this same ground : that is place : 1. such a Parliamentary Reform to say, as being absolutely necessary as would satisfy the people of England ; to keep out French principles. What 2. A revolution like that which had taken need was there so to dread these French place in France, or even of a more re- principles? Were they so amiable? Were publican cast; or, 3. A suppression of the they so very bewitching? What should Reformers, which necessarily included a induce Englishmen to run so eagerly war against France, because while a com after these French principles ? After munication with France was left open, to principles taught by a nation whom suppress the reformers would manifestly the English had always despised ? If I 25
i told that the principles were absurd and not solely, in view. Hundreds of writers 1 yet dangerous, that is no answer to my had appeared against him; but, though * question ; nor does it render the question all these asserted, that they had truth on le less necessary; for, the more absurd the their side, their writings were una
anavailing; !! principles, the grater must be the wonder, the people were so perverse as still to read :: that the people of England should have Paine, and, notwithstanding that it was
been so 'enamoured of them. And, if I asserted, that he was a contemptible
am told, that it was only a small and con wretch, and his works full of gross fals.temptible part of the people of England hoods and ignorance, it was thought safest * who were enamoured of these principles, I to prohibit the reading of them, and to leave,
ask how it then came to be necessary to the people at full liberty to read the writenter into a war to keep out these princi- ings of his answerers. This was thought ples Tbe truth is, that the French re- safest, and, therefore, this course volution bad awakened the cause of Reform adopted. But, there was a something in England; the boldness of the French in this proceeding that did not contribute Revolutionists offered an example to the much towards the producing of conviction Reformers in England, and their success that Paine was wrong; and especially as held out the strongest encouragement. The it was remembered, that the controversy communication which took place between did not originate with him, but with his opthe English Reformers and the National as ponent, Burke, who had, without any apsemblies of France, while it failed not to parent provocation, written and published urge on the former to new efforts, clearly a severe attack upon the French Revolushowed that nothing but a war with lion, and all those who had taken a share France could prevent reform or a rcvo in it. In answer to this attack, Paine wrote lution in England. This communica. his famous work, the “ Rights OF Man;". tion was direct, open, and without the and, Burke replied, from his seat in the smallest disguise, and the parties spoke in House of Conimons, where he recoma language that no one could misunder. mended his Antagonist to the care of the stand; but, if a reform had been granted Attorney General, who was then Sir JOHN in England, there does not appear the Scott, now lord Eldon, and who answered smallest reason to suppose that any danger Paine in an eloquent and convincing little to the kingly office here would have arisen publication, called aR INFORMATION from a communication with France. EX-OFFICIO, to which the latter did not But, it was resolved not to grant this re- choose to stay to offer a rejoinder. PAINE form; and, in order to put its advocates to went to France, and here was a striking insilence, a waragainst France was necessary. stance of what was apprehended; namely, To enter upon this war, however, without that while the communication with France plausible grounds, was not adviseable. It was open, it would be impossible to put a was expected, indeed, to be a sort of holi- stop to, or to check, the propagation of opiday war; a sort of jubilee campaign or two; nions dangerous to the system in England. but, it might possibly be otherwise ; and, --The proceedings in France favoured the as the people in general were very averse views of the Anti-Jacobins in England (for from war, it required some time to pre that was the name that the enemies of reform pare them for it, and also some favouring afterwards assumed ;) the King, who had events. When, therefore, the Refor- become suspected and odious from the conmers began to appear in considerable duct of those who professed to be fighting strength, and it was seen that their ad- for him against the people or part of the dresses and other publications produced people in France, and especially from the great effect in the minds of the people, a menaces of the Duke of Brunswick, was cry was set up, on the other side, against dethroned in August 1792, and put to death Republicans and Levellers, who aimed at in the next January, the nation having, in the destruction of Liberty and Property, under the interim, been declared a Republic. the pretence of seeking for A RÉFORM This was held to be a confirmation of the IN PARLIAMENT. PAINE, whose pow- charge against the reformers ; and, as great erful pen was converting millions to his alarm had been excited in the country, principles, was prosecuted as a libeller and amongst weak minded people, who are alout-lawed; and, such dread had his writ- ways the most numerous, to speak any ings inspired, that in May 1792, a Pro- longer of reform was to speak of republi. CLAMATION Was issued, which had the sup- canism, and to wish for the overthrow of pression of those writings particularly, if all order, law, rank, and property.
The industry that was made use of to raise after they had presented their petition to this alarm is incredible. The people were the House of Commons, in May, 1793, told all sorts of stories. Plots and con- published an address to the nation, in spiracies were talked of. In some parts of which was contained the passage taken the country it was believed, that the Le-for my motto ; and, there can be no doubt vellers were actually upon the eve of com at all, that the alurm, at that time existing ing into the towns and villages to divide in the country, had been excited and ine the property of the rich amongst the poor. flamed for the purpose of checking the pro
The people were induced to arm and gress of reform and calumniating the charac: accoutre themselves. And all this from ters of its promoters. I shall be told, per. no other earthly cause than the dread haps, that this was a very laudable
pur. which the Anti-Jacobins had of a Reform of pose; for, that, if a parliamentary reform Parliament, that very reform, which Pitt had taken place, it would have ruined the himself had asserted to be absolutely ne- country. But, how is the country now! cessary to the very cristence of the nation as What state has it been placed in by the an independent state, an assertion the truth refusal of reform? Is it now in a good sitoor falsehood of which we are now in a fair ation? Is it happy and safe? Are there way of seeing ascertained and proved to no apprehensions for its security against the whole world; for those are weak po enemies of any sort ? —Reader, when de liticians indeed, who imagine that the you read a debate; when do you read : “ Victories" which we are now gaining in trial for libel; when do you read about any the Peninsula have any tendency at all to measure of war expenditure, without seeing decide the contest between France and us. it stated, that we are now contending for our
Here we are, then, at the end of an very existence as a nation ? Everlastingly eighteen years war! Here we are, with six are we told of the crisis in which we are; hundred millions added to our national | the crisis of our fate; our auful situatic. Debt; with the annual interest of that This is the language we continually hear. Debt swelled from nine millions to thirty- Well, then, this is the situation, in which five millions; with our taxes augmented we have been placed by the war. Ner from fifteen millions to seventy millions ; laws of treason; laws about sedition ; la with our gold and silver converted into upon laws laying restraints upon the press
. paper, which paper has, even in the House Ask the cause. "Oh! they are necessary in of Commons, been declared to be worth no these critical times for the safety of the more than fifteen shillings and ten pence in country. Complain of the enormous load the pound; with our paupers trippled in of taxes. Třey are necessary to the safety number, and with a commerce and with of the country. Why, if this be true, manufactories said to be perishing.– then, the state of England is changed since Here we are, then : such is our state at the this war began. The war agaiost Jacoend of an eighteen years war against Re- bins and Levellers has not jusured its publicans, Jacobins, Levellers, and Re. safety. It is not pretended that the Jacoformers of all sorts and sizes. -I
bins and Levellers have any power. They
pass over the suspension of the Habeas Corpus never had any in England, except with Act for so many years, the trials of Mr. their tongues and pens; and, in France, Tooke and others for high treason, all the they have been totally destroyed by " Rii restraints upon the press and npon the use of gular Government and Social Order." speech; these I pass over; these the Anti. What, then, are you afraid of? Why jacobin will look upon as a great bless. not do away the laws intended for the ing; but, will he say the same of the crisis ? Why, sure, you are safe now! income tur? If he has place, or pension, Who, or what, is it that you fear nou or any means whereby he gets a 'share of what is it, in short, that makes the crisis! the taxes, he will; because he, in fact, by Very much puzzled would any
Antisuch means, gains, instead of losing'; Jacobin be to answer me these questions. but, if he be a fool Anti-jacobin; a gull He has seen the Jacobins and Levellers Anti-jacobin; then the ten per cent, taken overthrown and destroyed, and yet be from his income will have some weight as much afraid as ever. I shall be told
, with him; and, if it has, I beg bim to perhaps, that whatever the situation of the bear in mind, that the income tax was an
country may be, it is better than it would invention of Pirt, and that it arose out of have been if reform of parliament had beca the war waged against the Jacobins and granted in 1793. To be sure, it is net Levellers. The “ Friends of the People,” | possible to say precisely what wouli