The Convocation of the prelates and clergy of the province of Canter- bury met on Wednesday, and has sat until day. The Upper House did little business on Wednesday, and none on Thursday. On Friday they received petitions, one being from Mr. Hoare, the banker, in favour of the revival of Convocation. The Bishop of Oxford moved an address to the Throne, praying for the appointment of a Commission of Divines to draw up forms of services, upon special oc- miens, such as the sovereigns' accession and the close of harvest. The House were equally divided on the subject, and the Archbishop of Can- terbury gave his casting vote against the address. The Lower House under their Prolocutor, the Reverend Gilbert Elliott, Dean of Bristol, went more expeditiously to work. Canon Selwyn taking the last words of a report upon the operation of the Divorce Act, asserting that "when changes are proposed affecting the ritual of the Church and the duties of the clergy, the advice et the clergy should be taken upon it." The Reverend F. C. Massingberd, holding that Parliament has no right to alter the law of the Church without the assent of the Church, moved an amendment. Instead of saying that the Act of Victoria had materially changed the law of the Church, he would substitute these words- " That the Act is felt by a very large body of the clergy to have placed the law of the Church at variance with the law of the State." This view did not meet with general approval ; but on a division the amendment was negatived by the narrow majority of 33 to 28. The original resolution was carried. The other subject which has occupied the Lower House is Home and Foreign Missions, which it is desired should be extended. Both Houses were prorogued to the 25th August.
At a meeting of the Court of Common Council on Thursday, an ad- dress was adopted congratulating the Queen on the birth of a Prince, "son son of the Prince and Princess Frederick William of Prussia, and heir to the illustrious house of Hohenzollern." Mr. Deputy Lott was the fortunate mover. For the post of seconder there was great contention. The Lord Mayor called upon Mr. Towman Taylor; the Council upon Deputy White. The latter gained the day.
A deputation of medical officers of unions waited on Mr. Estcourt, on Wednesday. They were introduced by Lord John Russell and many Members of Parliament. Their views were expounded by several speak- ers, and their object was to oppose a scheme recently promulgated by the Poor-law Board. The speakers seemed to desire permanent appointment and remuneration per case, instead of a fixed salary. The result was that Mr. Estcomt said he felt the majority of feeling was opposed to his plan. He should not think of proposing for legislative adoption any scheme which has not the concurrence of the medical profession, the rate- payers, and the poor.
In a letter addressed to Lord John Manners by Captain Galton and Mr. Simpson the Government referees on the main drainage question, it is stated that the total cost of their scheme would not exceed 4,000,000/. (3,575,0001.), against 8,038,5001., the alleged cost of the Board's engi- neer's plan, as extended to Sea Reach ; and if their plan were enlarged and adapted to discharge the Government referees' quantity of sewage and rainfall, the cost would then be 13,075,0001., as against 6,785,5001. upon the cheaper and, possibly, better system of the Government re- ferees.
The will of Peter Thellusson, so frequent a cause of litigation, has given rise to two appeals to the House of Lords. By that extravagant document a large mass of property was directed to accumulate and be divided among the eldest male lineal descendants of his three sons, after the death of the sur- vivor of nine lives. This event happened in 18.56, and the legal dispute is— who are the eldest, those in point of lineage, or those in point of years ? The Master of the Rolls gave the property to Lord Rendlesham, and Charles Sabine Thellusaon—the "eldest male lineal descendants." Against this decision the appeals are made.
The case of Mallalieu versus Lyon terminated on Monday in a verdict for part of the amount claimed. The evidence relied on in mitigation of Mr. Lyon's conduct was that Mrs. Lyon had contracted habits of intemperance. It seems that she miscarried more than once and that her medical attend- ants recommended opiates. She thus contracted the habit of taking stimu- lants. Lord Campbell said it might have been expected that, under these circumstances, her husband would have treated her with more than ordi- nary tenderness. To the surprise of the Chief Justice, Mr. Lyon had at the same moment treated his wife as sane and insane. However, the evidence showed that Mrs. Lyon voluntarily signed the deed of separation ; and even had she signed it under duresse her husband could not be sued for the debts she contraoted previously to the decree for restitution of conjugal rights, seeing that during this time her allowance was regularly paid.. Then the Jury would have to decide whether Mr. Lyon had not evaded the decree of the Ecclesiastical Court by not taking his wife home." [It was shown that she was kept in a house where Mr. Lyon slept on the ground-floor, not in his "home.'] Mr. Lyon shut out her maid, threatened to kick her dog, gave her in charge of servants. Could she remain without apprehensions of personal restraint ? If Mr. Lyon bond fide took her there to his home and she could remain there with safety, the defendant was entitled to a verdict ; but if it was not his home, and Mrs. Leon had a reasonable apprehension of personal violence, or was under constraint, she was justified in leaving, and the defendant would be liable to the extent of 1251. 16s. 5d. The Jury, after a few minutes' consideration, found a verdict for the plaintiff for that amount-1251. 16. 5d.
A singular action for libel was tried in the Court of Queen's Bench on Wednesday. The plaintiffs were Mr. Charles Richardson and his wife ; the defendants Dr. and Mrs. Granville. Mrs. Richardson was a patient under charge of Dr. Granville and lived for some time in his house. When the Granville's went abroad Mrs. Richardson went also. Mrs. Granville and Miss Granville suspected Dr. Granville of an improper intimacy with his patient and imparted their suspicions to a clergyman, who, eliciting an ex- planation obtained a retractation from the two ladies. But a letter from Mrs. Richardson to Dr. Granville accidentally falling into his wife's hands, all her suspicions were renewed ; and were again freely imparted to her friends, principally, however, to the Reverend Mr. letson, the clergyman before mentioned. This brought matters to a crisis. There seems to have been no grounds whatever for the suspicion. Dr. Granville on behalf of his wife de- sired to settle the matter by arbitration, but that course failed. The action then came before the Court. These transactions have been going on over a space of three years. The Jury found a verdict for the plaintiff, damages forty shillings.
A follower of the Prince of Oude appeared in the Court of Common Pleas as defendant in an action for debt. It seems he was smitten by the charms of a niece of a Mrs. Thomas, living in Sting° Lane, Bryanstone Square. He insisted on marriage, and was married by licence instanter. He re- mained in the house three weeks, and the friends of his bride feasted them- selves all the time at his expense—he paid 1081. Then he furnished a house for 1501. As soon as his money was gone quarrels commenced. The aunt told him her niece would kill him, and recommended him to run away and leave Aunt Thomas to sell the furniture. The Indian signed a bill of sale, but did not receive any of the proceeds; and he-was next arrested at the
suit of Mrs. Thomas for 33/. 108., "for board and lodging." This was an unfounded claim. The Indian picked up a defender somewhere ; and then the brokers who had the proceeds of the sale found it convenient to hand over two-thirds of the proceeds of the sale. These facts were proved ; the attempt to do the " native " was obvious ; and the Jury found a verdict for the defendant.
A certificate meeting in re George and James Prince was held in the Court of Bankruptcy on Tuesday. The bankrupts began trade as wine and cigar merchants in Regent Street, on a capital of 590/. When made bank- rupts their debts were upwards of 30,000/. ; their assets 1000/. They were proprietors of "Prince's Club," and their subscribers were principally cavalry officers. They drew bills to a large amount upon the wife of James Prince, in the name she bore before she was married—Mrs. Mullen. One creditor said, "they put things in a gay light and talked of the great men they had for subscribers." Commissioner Fonblanque said that he could not see a single redeeming feature in the ease. He suspended their cer- tificate until they had been five years before the Court, and when granted it will be a certificate of the third class.
A remarkable series of frauds came to light in consequence of an action in the Westminster County Court. The defendant in the case was one John Gibson Bennet, " surgeon-aurist " ; the plaintiff Miss Mary Scattergood. She informed the Court that, being a sufferer from deafness, she read an advertisement stating that that complaint could be cured in ten minutes. Acting on that statement she went to 6, Leicester Place, Leicester Square, where the defendant was receiving patients as "Doctor Coniston." He told her he could cure her "in ten minutes for ten guineas," but afterwards undertook the cure for half that amount. On the following day she went again to his house with the five guineas, which she paid to him and "sat down, thinking she was going to be cured at once." The defendant, how- ever, making a trivial excuse, sent her away with a bottle of mixture, which was to be used at night, and "cure her perfectly by the following morning." She went away and applied the mixture, which made her head and ears sore, and she became much worse. When she went to the de- fendant's house to complain, she was told by a person whom she believed to be his brother, that Doctor Coniston could not be seen, and that he would be away for several days. She subsequently called repeatedly, and was at length told that he had gone abroad—to Madeira. Two years passed away, and Miss Scattergood was accompanying a female friend, Miss Thomas, to the house of a "Doctor Matton, accompanying Spring Gardens. There the plaintiff recognized the defendant, and was recognized in return. Subsequently, when Miss Thomas had to sue " Matton," Bennett appeared in Court as the defendant in that action, and Miss Scattergood identified him as Coni- ston. A witness named Mullen proved that he accompanied his daughter on a visit to Spring Gardens, and there had an interview with him as "Dr. Wafters." Mr. Mullen having occasion to ask the "Doctor" for the re- turn of an over-payment, the latter called him a "grey-headed old rascal," threatened to throw him down stairs, and scolded him for taking up his time, "for he had fifty patients to see every day, and was a much greater man than Sir Benjamin Brodie." Miss Rossiter, another witness, having been attracted to Spring Gardens by the defendant's advertisement, had paid him, as Dr. Waters " 4/. 38. to cure her "in ten minutes," with the usual result. The defendant's answer to these numerous allegations was a bold one. He went into the witness-box and said that he had never received any money from the plaintiff, or ever seen her before that day. He had never resided at 6, Leicester Place never practised as Dr. Couhton. Not only Miss Scattergood, but the witnesses Mullen and Rossiter, were entirely mistaken as to his identity. He mentioned his brother as having been "connected with a Mr. Coniston as an assistant." The brother was put into the box. He appeared some ten years younger than the defendant, and said that "plaintiff was a gratis patient of Mr. Coniston, and never paid a halfpenny." He was asked whether such a person as Mr. Coniston really existed ; and, in reply, expressed his surprise that that gentleman was not present, "as he had been subpcenaed." The names of "Samuel Coniston" and "Doctor Samuel Coniston" were called, but the only re- sponse was the laughter of the audience. The Judge, when the case had been fully laid before him, said there could be no doubt that a conspiracy and a fraud had been committed, and he should at the same time order the defendant to be taken into custody for perjury.
The Clerkenwell magistrate has remanded four persons, three men and a woman, on a charge of conspiring to defraud. These persons formed the " Mercantile Loan Fund Association." Their modus operandi was first to advertise the Concern' then when applications were made for loans, "John Campbell Resident" Manager replied, demanding certain payments, of pre- liminary expenses payable in post office orders. Of course when they got the money the would-be borrower heard no more of them. They seem to have found many dupes as they were well known at the money order office.
A aeries of accidents occurred in the City on Sunday. A horse, drawing a chaise, containing three persons and a child, took fright near St. Paul's, ran against a post, and threw out a lady aud gentleman and their child. The gentleman who remained in the chaise endeavoured to guide and mo- derate the horse. In vain. The animal dashed against a church, and the driver was thrown. Leaving one wheel behind and soon losing another, the horse knocked down a man, a woman and a child before he was caught. The man is dead. Thus one horse killed one and wounded five persons.