Sir John Pakington made a very grave statement on Saturday.
Mr. Graves asked him the names of the ships in the reserve at present available for service, and the First Lord replied, " My hon. friend will excuse me if I do not give him the names of these ships, but I am sorry to say that if I did so the list would be a very short one. I regret to state I find the reserves by no means in a satisfactory condition, or indeed in such a state as I had a right to find them—so much so that the Admiralty have great difficulty in finding relief for the ships that return from foreign service." We presume there is exaggeration in this statement,
that either the squadrons on foreign stations are overloaded with ships, or that Sir J. Pakington meats only fillips toady for instant service. Np explanation has, however, been offered, and the official statanent therefore amountssto this, We have .*pent a hundred millions in -ten years, and isave,not a float yet. Prussia will get one in half the time for a tenth of the money. She has not yet forgotten how to punish those who defraud the State.