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warned you to amend it by to day: you The affidavit of Doctor Lipscombe have come here, however, without ap- was also read, stating, that he attended pearing to have profited by our advice Mr. Finnerty in November last, and or our indulgence. I hope, Sir, you that he was then in extreme danger of come in the proper spirit to mitigate a derangement and death, owing to anxiety crime of which you have confessed the of mind; and that he was not yel quite commission.
recovered. Mr. F.-I have, I hope, come here Mr. F.-When I last appeared here, with a suitable spirit. I have come here, the first interruption I experienced was however, under no consciousness of guilt, from the informality of Dr. O'Conner's und I will avow none. That part of the affidavit; providentially I have received affidavit which you have now inter- a more correct one since from Bandou; rupted, you suffered to be proceeded I now ofter it. with on a former day. That part to The Court.-Who is this O'Couner? which the court objected has been ex-' Mr. F. He is a gentleman who was punged : I have expunged above two- transported on the mere unsupported thirds of the affidavit, but have suffered warrant of Lord Castlereagb. that to which no objection was made to The Court.-Reject this. remain.
Mr. F.-If you believe Lord CastleLord E.-Then band it back to him. reagh guilty, of course it may be rejectWe reject it, Sir; you got very indul- eid. If you do not believe him guilty, I gent advice from us, and you have re- pledge myself here to produce, if I am jected it; you must take the conse- allowed, above fifty affidavits, confirmquence.
ing on his part atrocities so enormous, Mr. F.--My Lord, you made no ob- that they caunot be contemplated withjection to this on a former day, and that out a feeling of horror, which must, in misled me. I am willing, however, to every humane heart, rise into a principle have it framed umexceptionably by any of devotion, invoking the Throne of God referee your lordship chooses.
to shower down his vengeance upon the Court.-No, Sir, the court will not monster-yes, I repeat, the monster, to hear of a referee.
,whom no satisfaction can be due in this Mr. F.-Will you, then, allow me till case, unless you deem any degree of to-inorrow to have it recast, according turpitude entitled to such satisfaction ! to your lordship's wishes ?
This court has not acted upon such a The Court.-No, we are not to wait principle: Lord Mansfield refused an here. till you condescend to conform to information in General Plato's case, bethe law. You were before told by me cause the statement complained of was that this affidavit was improper, yet you true. I offer this affidavit, to prove that have persisted. If you have any uvex every word in my publication is true. ceptionable affidavits which can do you The Court.- We will not hear it. good, we will hear them.
Mr. F.-Here, then, is the affidavit Mr. F. Am I, then, for one error, to of Mr. Clare. be excluded from the benefit of my most The Court.-Who is Clare? important affidavit ? I have shaped it Mr. F.-The affidavit will tell that. by Draper's case, and I desire it inay be The description will take up as much read.
tine as the reading. It has been sworn The Court. – Sir, your pertinacity before the judges of the King's Bench in shall not influence us. There may be a Ireland. thousand distinctions between Draper's Mr. Clare's affidavit stated, that in case and this.
the year 1798, various kinds of torture, Mr. F.-Well, then, be it so, though such as wbippings, picketings, half-hangI have affidavits here which would asiun ings, &c. &c. were practised in Dublin, nish the country; since I am excluded close to the Castle gate. He swore also from presenting them, it is iny misfor- that Lord Castlereagh must have heard tune. Here is one unexceptionable. the cries.
The affidavit of David Power, Esq. a The Court.-Can it be endured, that volunteer in the army of Walcheren, such affidavits as this are to be put in was here read, stating the imminent pe- when we have expressed our determinaril in which Mr. Finnerty stood from tion on the subject, and given our advice? Lord Castlereagh's order.
Mr. Garrow.Certaily, my lord, it
ought not to be tolerated. You have same as those which you have offered. given this man an entire week, and he They cannot plead in mitigation. bas chosen to remain obstinate.
Mr. F.--According to this, I am cuMr. F.-I offer the affidavit to be rious to hear what your lordship means read: it will substantiate every thing I by mitigation. I again offer my affidabave stated in the original libel.
The Court.-Sir, have you any inof- The Court. I said before, not to the fensive affidarit?
purport of those you have offered. Mr. F.-My Lords, according to the Mr. F.--I shall, then, state the purdoctrine which was laid down by this port of a few; and then your lordship court, that truth was no justification, I can receive or reject them as they propleaded guilty on my trial: I did so be- ceed. I have here an affidavit of, under cause I understood that an being brought his government, a father and son, torup for judgment, I might produce the tured side by side. Will you hear that? truth in mitigation. This was no idle The Court.-No. fancy of my own; it was built upon Mr. F.—Here is another from Mr. your precedents. Since the law was Hughes, whom Lord Castlereagh saw against me, I have deferred to it; but after the torture had been inflicted ; his nothing on earth shall induce me to make back was raw with the scourge, and his any submission to Lord Castlereagh. shirt one mass of blood loosely flung No, my lords, your language to Gale around him. Jones on bis trial was, -" You have The Court.-Why this is contumacy thought fit to charge his lordship with to the court. ucting in that high office from motives of Mr. F.- I wish to offer none. I stand personal ill-will towards a private indi here not to repel your judgment, but to vidual, and with having made use of his vindicate my character. Reputation is authority and influence, as secretary of dearer to me than life; and in comparison siate, to harass and oppress such indivi- with the loss of that, any punishment dual, in such a way, as, if true, would within power's limits to inflict has little not only render him unfit to fill that high terrors for me. I have offered now to station in which he had been placed, but prove the truth of all my statements. would prove him so base an individual According to the law, I may be called that no gentlenian could associate with a libeller ; but, if I had not offered my him.”--Such was the language of your affidavits, I might be called a liar also. Jordship, addressed to Mr. Jones when Since the court does not choose to hear pronouncing sentence upon him for a the truth of this averment, I proceed to libel upon Castlereagh.--I am ready to another. prove that Castlereagh does deserve the Mr. Dixon's affidavit stated, that he description applied to him by your lord was a yeoman in 1798; that he saw ship--that he is one of the basest indivi three peasants whipped and tortured duals not only that ever degraded a high without trial--office, but that ever existed in society. The Court.---What does this prove? And will you then punish me for cen Mr. F.--It goes on to state that these suring the conduct of such a mau? cruelties were committed with Castle
The Court.-We cannot hear this. reagh's sanction and privity. You may now utter fresh libels against The Court.--You have been often told Lord Castlereagh, which he can have no these things were irrelevant. Do not opportunity of rebutting.
compel us to send you back to prison till Mr. F.--Yes, iny lord, he will have next term, w order that you may come an opportunity, I offer my affidavits. Let here to receive our judgment in a behim, as Col. Draper did, put in counter coming inanner. affidavits, if he can, and thus rebut my Mr. F.--I have been at very great evidence. If he cannot do this, he must trouble and expence to procure those stand arraigned and convicted before the affidavits. I went to Ireland for the country, I ask your lordships to give him purpose, and now offer them again, with the opportunity; or if you do not, I ask the observation, that they do not contain you, in the name of all that is sacred, how one hundredth part of the atrocities which can you reconcile it to yourselves to I could prove against this mai). I have send me to a prison for uttering the however, sufficient for my purpose. Here truth? Will you hear my affidavits? they are, sworn before the judges of Ire-,
The Court.-No; not if they are the land by honest men. I press thein upon
the court neither with presumption nor Mr. Serjeant Best rose for the defence, pertinacity, and I quote the case of Cole in reply, when the business ended by Draper to support me. Not one word Draper's being held to bail. I shall rest has been said to overthrow that case, on Draper's case until it be controverted, Col. Draper was allowed to prove every Mr. Garrow.--As there is nothing for word, and he was held to bail. Con the prosecutor to speak upon but the inlonel Draper offered affidavits afterwards formation, of course it must follow that proved false, yet they were heard ; he the defendant should first speak, or else offered irrelevant affidavits, yet they were what can the prosecutor have to reply to? not interrupted. I here offer true and The Court. - As to Draper's case, relevant affidavits, and I demand equal some irregularity may have crept in, justice. I refer your lordships to no sta- perhaps, from the indifference of the tute which you may construe at your dis- counsel, or some other cause ; but we cretion. I produce to you no dicta of cannot suffer that irregularity to contrathose who have preceded you, and by vene established usage. whom you are not bound; but I quote Mr. Clifford. --My Lord, the rule, as to you your own wise, modern, uncon- quoted by the Attorney-General, only tradicted act, in a case which occurred applies to cases where no affidavits were not two years since. If any thing were produced. Here two, those of Power wanting to prove the vile malignity with and Lipscombe, have been read. which any enemy has periecuted me, I The Court.-No, none on the part of have merely to mention, that on the the prosecution. Mr. Finnerty, now very day when this court were protract- proceed. ing my appearance on account of ill Mr. F.-I am well aware, my lords, health, the attorney of my prosecutor, of the many disadvantages under which accompanied by a Mr. Groom, who is I stand this day; but of none am I more the confidential friend of my prosecutor, sensible of than having unhappily squared called at my doctor's, by the authority, my conduct by a decision, which until as they said, of the Attorney-General, now acted on, has been so suddenly reand under the pretext of enquiring afterjected. I have also the misfortune to my health, used the most insulting ob- have that sworn testimony which I have servations. Thus, my prosecutor and offered, refused; and to hear charges bis friends betrayed their regret that the made against me which it is not allowed misfortune of sickness should have de- to me to rebut, I cannot, indeed, deferred the gratification of their wishes to vise what the Attorney-General may commit me to a goal. IF YOUR LORD offer for his client. Perhaps, fertile in SHIPS WILL NOT ALLOW THESE AFFIDA expedients, he may declare his innoVITS TO BE READ, THE PACT OF THEIR cence. In this he will but follow the SUPPRESSION WILL SPEAK VOLUMES TO EVERY MAN OF COMMON SENSE IN THE openly declared in his place in parliaCOUNTRY!
ment, that there was no torture inflicted The Court-Since you have no pro- in Ireland. Such an effect had this per affidavits to produce, you may now hardy and unblushing declaration, that speak on any topics you think relevant. I well remember, when Mr. Dallas was
Mr. F.-No; let the Attorney-Gene- defending the tortures of Picton in Triral begin: I choose to have the privilege nidad, on the precedent of those inflicted of replying to him.
in Ireland, the judge stopped him, hy The Attorney-General.-No; in the the assertion, that there was no punishe case of the King against Budd, it was ment inflicted in that country but by ruled that where no affidavits were pro- court-martial. It is not for me, howduced either on the part of the prosecu- ever, to anticipate what may be lis detion or defence, the defendant was first fence : sufficient will it be for ine if I to speak in mitigation, and the prosecu- repel his accusation. What are the tor to answer hiin.
crimes of which I am accused ? I am Mr. F.--Certainly, Lord Kenyon accused of being oppressed, and not ruled it so; but I should suppose that submitting-of being slandered, and opyour lordships will prefer the precedent posing him who traduced me-of acting which you have yourselves established. on the first law, which God and nature I allude to the case of Draper, where have implanted in the heart of man, Mr. Garrow and Mr. Nolan, I believe, that of self-preservation! Is this to be spoke first for the prosecution, and then deemed a crime? Goou God, are we come to such a crisis, that in this land of barbarism of the most uffcivilised nafreedom, the tyrant may torture us, and tions! we are not to turn; the slanderer may The Court here interfered, and told assail us, and we are not to oppose ; the the defendant he was proceeding irrepersecutor may pursue us, and we are not gularly. to resist him! Are we, when oppressed, Mr. F. I do not come here uninand spurned, and trampled on, to be formed on this subject. I have examidenied the last refuge of misery-com- ned and digested it. I have traced it plaint? I ask this day no indulgence; from its vicious author, who hoped, I supplicate no mercy. Give me an im- vainly hoped, by its invention to shield partial hearing, a patient attention, pure his memory from the obloquy it merited. and unmixed justice. Justice, my lords, The result of my research has been, that is consistent and compatible with free- the law of libel is the will of the Judge. dom: mild, tolerant, and unbiassed, she If the Attorney-General presented a seeks but the clear and candid truth to book for prosecution, and the bench produce a decision consonant to her once said it was a libel, under the precharacter. Give me to-day that justice, sent law the jury must find it so. No and I shall have little apprehension. matter whether the person libelled be You see me here oppressed, but inno- innocent or guilty, he who accuses him cent; respectful, but undaunted ; reve- must be convicted. In the words of Sir rential to this court, but not regardless Thomas Mallet, “libelling against a of my character; and supported, under common strumpet is as great an offence all my difñculties, by the conviction, as against an honest woman, and perthat a British court of justice is the last haps more dangerous to the breach of place where apprehension should enter. the peace; for as the woman said, she It may be asked me, why, if I am in- should never grieve to be told of her nocent, did I withdraw my plea? I will red nose if she had not one in reality." tell your lordships : Very early in this Lord Castlereagh has pretended a most prosecution I heard the ibench declare, violent regard for his character. But that any evidence of the truth which I how ludicrous is this delicacy! See, if should offer could not extenuate my guilt. he had proceeded against me by infor
That, they said, wus law, Here then, I mation, he might have sworn my statewas an innocent man, without the right ment was false; if be bad proceeded by to prove my innocence. What was I to action, I might have sworn it was true : do? Surely, not to oppose the autho- but no, he chooses to proceed criminalrity of this court, and trust to the simple ly, where neither can take place; and statement of an unlettered individual this he calls a vindication of his characlike myself, to combat it with a jury. ter !!! Tell me, my lords, does such a No; I had no such presumption. In- course proceed from solicitude of characpocent, then, as I was, I allowed judg- ter or resentment? ment to go by default, in, it seems, the Sir Simon Le Blanc.-You are travain hope, that that truth, which could velling quite out of the road. not ward off a verdict might still mitigate Mr. F.-I am not deviating from the a punishment. I supplicate no mercy law. I confess no guilt. I know Lord Cas- Lord E.--Sir, unless you take the tlereagh too well, and respect myself warning which has been so repeatedly too much, to supplicate his clemency. given you, the court must let its justice If I had traduced him, I should apolo overcome its compassion. . gise; and even after quitting the prison Mr. F.-If you think this prosecution to which I may be sent, if it can he has been instituted to clear Lord Casa proved to me that I have uttered one tlereagh, of course you will allow me to syllable of falshehood, I shall make a clear myself by proving his guilt. tonement; for I dislike no human being Lord E.-No: the prosecution bas so much as to disregard the truth. But been brought to satisfy the justice of I have little idea of ever being so con- the country by the prevention of libels. vinced. Here are before me the horrid Mr. F.-Lord Castlereagh is anxious testimonies of his atrocity; here are the for his character, and so am I for mine. speaking proofs which sullied bim in Is be to escape, and am I to be libelled Ireland; here are the records, which, with impunity? I know well some have if read this day, would present such been even rewarded for it: but the cacruelties as never before branded the lumnies of bad men " pass by me as the idle wind which I regard not." I have the style of Sterne's inuendo ; any man never spoke against the truth, but I may fill it up as he pleases. Why was have opposed oppression; there is my I uufit? I defy the Attorney-General crime. I have advocated reform the to answer me in any other way, than principle which gave Chatham immorta- that he wanted to prejudice the public lity, and his son power; which has giv mind against me. en Whitbread, Sheridan, and Burdett The Court.-Why, you are hardly the confidence of the nation-which uttering a syllable which is not libellous. makes that nation look up to the prince We shall certainly remand you. for measures, in which I trust and hope Mr. F.- was in this court when he may not disappoint them. I have Gilbert Wakefield was heard without inadvocated innocence, and in so doing terruption, for three hours; but if you I have transgressed a law which no huo do not choose to hear me, of course I man being can ascertain. No man can must desist. charge me with a sinister view in doing The Court.-We wish to hear you if so. I trust I shall hear no accusation you are not iudecorous. of " base lucre" made against me, as it Mr. F.-Well, then, since this topic was against another individual in this is displeasing, I shall have recourse to court; a strange accusation to come from another which may prove more palahim, forsooth, who never opens his mouth table. I have sworn in my affidavits without a fee! I know a prejudice is that every thing with which I have excited against those who attack men in charged Castlereagh in Ireland, is true, power: but do not they sometines de The Court.-That is not in evidence. serve it? Do you not remember how (Lord Ellenborough, who had withJames, Coke, and that wicked Bacon, drawn for a short time, returned, when then Attorney-General,conspired against the defendant was thus appealing to the an innocent individual? Do you not court.] remember the monster Jefferies? But, Mr. F.-See to what a state your thank God, the record of his punish- lordships have reduced me. You first ment has accompanied the record of his . say, when I offer you evidence, you will guilt ; let it be a sacred admonition to not receive it; and then, when I refer all who are weak or wicked enough to to a point, you turn round and tell me, prefer the transient favour of a court to it is not in evidence. Shall I be at li the pure and beauteous permanency of berty to proceed ? virtue! Yet, what was Jefferies to
The Court -Not in this way. But, my lords, I check myself. Lord Mr. F.--Every thing I have stated is Kenyon says, a libeller has no right to true. I had no other way of proceeding. complain when libelled; as sound doc- An action against Castlereagh, I was trine as ever he promulgated. You will told, could not succeed ; and so, in ore not deny it, my lords : if so, then you der to shield myself from his cool and will not punish me, for you cannot pu- cautious calumny, I could only have redish the censor of bin who has wasted course to the press. I now come to the the treasure of the people, and the blood case of Orr, The Attorney-General has of his species. When this man was said that Lord Yelverton refused to resending out the greatest expedition which commend Mr. Orr to mercyeyer sailed froni England, how was he T he Court.-You cannot proceed on employed? Why, in watching me. that topic. -The Attorney-General here left the Mr. F.--I suppose I shall have the court. -- Better would it have been if he same indulgence which was given to Mr. had been sending bark to the fine sol. Wakefield? diery he sent to perish, and whom I saw Lord Ellenborough did not know what dying for the want of it. But why did I Mr. Gilbert Wakefield might have been go to Walcheren? Simply at the request suffered to say, during those three hours, of Sir Home Popham; whose letter I but if it was' as irrelevant as what the have in my hand, requesting me to give defendant was now uttering, he hoped a narrative of the expedition. Castle- the court interfered to suppress it. . reagh prevented me; and, besides my Mr. F. asked to what other vindica. personal injuries, occasioned me a pe tion of his character he could have rer cuniary loss of near 6001. The Attor sorted, than the one which he adopted ? ney-General chose to say, I was unfit. He applied to counsel, on the subject of "Unfit !” this phrase is something in bringing an action against Lord Castle: