18 MAY 1912, Page 2

On Thursday Lord Hugh Cecil opened the debate in a

speech of great eloquence. He declared that they ought not 1,ghtly to part with the principle of the adherence of the Stale to religion, and therefore the Government ought to give the people the opportunity of saying whether they did or did not wish to terminate the Establishment in Wales. As to die. endowment, it was a violation of the laws of property and a hindrance to the cause of religion. Mr. Lloyd George was thrown into a frenzy, or, at any rate, pretended to be " stirred to the depths of his nature," by Lord Hugh's words. On such occasions Mr. Lloyd George always looks out for somebody to bite, and in the present case his choice fell upon the Duke of Devonshire, on the ground that he had dared to sign an anti- Disestablishment circular. Speaking of those whose ancestors acquired Church lands, Mr. Lloyd George declared :—

" They robbed the Catholic Church. They robbed the mona- steries. They robbed the altars. They robbed the almshouses. They robbed the poor. They robbed the dead. Than they come here, when we are trying at any rate to recover some part of this pillaged property for the poor for whom it was originally given, and they venture, with hands dripping with the fat of sacrilege, to accuse us of robbery of God."