We have already mentioned Lord John Russell's acceptance of office: it remains to narrate the progress of the Ministerial crisis during the week. Lord Johu has held daily interviews with his friends at his residence in Chesham Place. There was a very numerous meeting on Tuesday; and it was attended principally by members of the last Liberal Administration, who are revived with the titles they bore when in office-
" The Marquis of Lansdowne, late President of the Council; the Earl of Auck- land, late Governor-General of India; Earl Grey, late Secretary-at-War; the Earl of Clarendon, late Lord Privy Seal; Viscount Palmerston, late Secretary for Fo- reign Affairs; Viscount Morpeth, late Secretary for Ireland; Lord Cottenhani, late Lord Chancellor; Lord Monteagle, late Chancellor of the Exchequer; Sir John Cam Hobhouse, late President of the Board of Control; Sir GeorgeGrey, late Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster; Right Honourable F. T. Baring, late
Chancellor of the Exchequer- Right Honourable T. B. Macaulay, late Secretary- at-War • Right Honourable Edward Ellice, late Secretary to the Admiralty; Right Honourable IL Labouchere, late President of the Board of Trade; Mr. Tufnell, a Lord of the Treasury." Among the other gentlemen who have called on Lord John, have been Mr. E. J. Stanley, " late Paymaster-General of the Forces," Mr. Charles Buller, Mr. Ricardo, and the Duke of Bedford. On Wednesday evening, Lord John Russell dined with a party of poli- tical friends at the Earl of Auckland's; and afterwards, accompanied by the Marquis of Lansdowne, he went to Windsor Castle. That evening, (the Court circular records) Earl Grey dined at the Travellers Club! Lord John Russell and his companion returned to town on Thursday morning. There was another long-continued meeting at Chesham Place; and it became known that Lord John Russell had accepted office. He paid another short visit to Windsor the same afternoon.
No list of the new Ministry was published last night. The Chronicle, in the morning, said-
" There can, we infer, be no doubt that Lord Cottenham will be Chancellor; Sir Thomas Wilde, Attorney-General; that Mr. Pigott and Mr. Rutherford will reoccupy their respective positions in Ireland and Scotland; that Lord Palmer- ston will be Foreign Secretary. Rumour assigns the Colonial Office to Earl Grey, and the Home Office to Lord Morpeth; but none of the appointments re- ferred to have yet, we believe, been actually made, while only some of them can be considered certain."
" The Duke of Bedford, it is stated, [by the same paper,] will be offered the office of blaster of the Horse.
" The Duke of Devonshire will give the future Whig Government his support, bat will decline any office. The noble Duke was Lord Chamberlain in the late Earl Grey's Administration."
Meanwhile, Sir Robert Peel also has held daily meetings with several of his colleagues. These meetings have been attended by the Earl of Lincoln, Lord Stanley, Sir James Graham, Mr. Goulburn, Mr. Sidney Herbert, and the Earl of Aberdeen.
It had been reported that several private interviews had passed between some of the incoming and some of the outgoing Ministry; whence arose rumours of a coalition. On Wednesday, these reports were contradicted thus—
"With the exception of an interview of three quarters of an hour's duration on Thursday last with the Right Honourable the Secretary of State for the Home Department, Lord John Russell has had no communication whatever with any of the members of Sir Robert Peel's Ministry, either before or since they tendered their resignation to the Queen."
According to the Times yesterday, however, one more remarkable com- munication did take place— "As late as Wednesday evening, if we are rightly informed, his Lordship com- municated to Sir Robert Peel that a more deliberate view of the prospect before him had confirmed the reluctance he had felt from the first; and that if Sir Ro- bert would remain in office and carry out the opinions which had led to his resig- nation, Lord John Russell and his friends would render all the assistance in their power. Sir Robert, however, declined to be Premier by the mercy of the Whigs, and to enter into engagements which might possibly be the subjeat of future dis- pute. On this refusal, and finding the responsibility thus thrust upon him, Lord Jelin Russell at length plucked up the courage to give her Majesty, yesterday evening, a positive answer. We may expect, therefore, in a very few days to find the new Ministry fairly under way." The Morning Chronicle makes this statement respecting the division in the late Cabinet- " We are informed, that on the explanation, which as a matter of course will take place at the assembling of Parliament, the following division for and against Sir Robert Peel will prove in every particular correct. There were for Sir Robert Peel, in support of his views, including the right honourable Baronet himself— the Earl of Aberdeen, the Right Hon. Sidney Herbert, the Earl of Lincoln, Sir James Graham. In opposition to those views—the Duke of Wellington, Lord Stanley, the Duke of Buceleuch, Lord Wharncliffe, the Earl of Ripon, the Earl of Haddington Lord Lyndhurst, the Right Hon. Henry Goulburn, Lord Granville Somerset. As regards Lord Lyndbarst, we can state, on undoubted authority, that the noble and learned Lord contemplated, previous to the meeting of Parliament, to relinquish the high functions of Lord Chancellor, owing to the uncertainty of his heal "
Many have supposed that Lord John Russell foresaw the precise time of his being " sent for " by the Queen: a correspondent, whom we can trust, shows that the foresight did not exist—the summons was quite unexpected. This is an extract from our correspondent's letter-
" Lord John Russell was sitting with his wife at Douglas's Hotel, [in Edin- burgh,] reading to her, at ten o'clock in the evening, when the Queen's messenger arrived; and on hearing that somebody wished to speak to him, he declined see- ing him unless he mentioned his name and the business he came upon. The messenger sent up his name, which was unknown to Lord John; but declined mentioning his errand. Lord John then refused to see him; and he was obliged to send up by the waiter the Queen's private letter."
Parliament, as represented by the Lord Chancellor and two other Lords Commissioners, and by some officers of the Commons, met on Tuesday, in order to the form of further prorogation, from that day to the 30th instant.
It is remarked that the Lord Chancellor seemed to have suffered much from his late attack.
The Ministerial interregnum and the look-out for a general election have set some of the electioneering folks at work ; and predictions, mime- Tons and confident, are made by the Free-traders as to the gain they are to achieve in the anticipated contest. According to their authorities seats in the following boroughs and counties are to be wrested from the hands of the Protectionists.
Salisbury—Mr. Wall, the present Member for Guildford, and Colonel Buckley of New Hall, are mentioned as the new candidates. Norwich—A requisition has been addressed to Sir W. Foster and Mr. S. M. Pete. Cambridge—Mr. Shafto Adair is named, and "another" is expected. Lymington—Mr. Cockburn, Q.C., is to be one of the candidates. Oxford—A candidate of congenial opinions to Mr. Langston is to be sought for. North Staffordshire—Mr. E. Buller is to be one of the candidates. Newcastle—Mr. Buckley is spoken of Liverpool—Mr. Fox blank and Mr. Ewart are named. The other places enumerated are North Cheshire, Oxfordshire, North Nottinghamshire, Stoke-upon-Trent, Leeds, and Leicester.
The Protectionists are also at work, but not on so great a scale as the Free-traders: they lie more on the defensive. .Andover is to be contested by Mr. H. B. Cole of Middleton House and Sir J. Pollan of Radnam, on the Conservative side; Mr. Etwall, one of the present Members, and "another," (Mr. Walter is named,) being supported by the Liberals.
It is understood that Lord William Paget does not come forward. " We under- stand," says the Hampshire Independent, speaking of Winchester, " that the majority of the Committee who conducted the election of Mr. Escott have signed [and forwarded] a declaration expressing their determination to withhold Unlit support from him, in the event of his again becoming a candidate."
In Ireland the Repeal journals are reckoning up a brigade of sixty Re'. pealers ready to uphold the new Minister, should " he pay Ireland in kind "; and equally ready to overthrow him should he decline to take them at their price. Says the Cork Examiner, " The attendance of the Irish Members at the Conciliation Hall for one month would bathe the ambition of Lord John Russell, and reduce him at once from the highest position under the Crown to the simple leadership of the Opposition." The same authority states that Lord John Russell need not attempt to supply places in his Ministry with Mr. Pigott, Mr. Sheil, or Mr. Wyse; as none of the constituencies will again return them to Parliament.
Among the letter-writers of this active juncture is Mr. Busfeild Fer- rand ; who has addressed to the Morning Post an epistle conceived in his usual over-excited style, and levelled against the Anti-Corn-law League, Lord John Russell, Sir Robert Peel, the Agricultural Protection Society, Mr. Cobden, the manufacturers, Mr. Chadwick, &c. It revives old ex- ploded stories about the " devil's dust," Mr. Cobden's milch-cows, &c., with as much freshness of manner as if they were told for the first time. There are two statements, that we do not remember to have met with, con- stantly in Mr. Ferrand's effusions. One is, that he refused to join the Bond Street Society, because it was limited to the selfish object of protect- ing agriculture alone, instead of protecting British industry generally: The other is the following " short anecdote "- " A body of wool-combers, who worked for a manufacturer in my neighbour- hood, carried their wool to the mill on the pay-day of wages. He deducted a certain amount from each. They requested to know his reason. Why, you see, lads,' he replied, ' I have had several heavy losses lately. Last week I lost a valuable cow, and I always make it a practice to deduct my losses from the wages of my workpeople.' I asked whether they had not resisted this robbery? No,' they replied; we admired his honesty in telling us the troth: there are plenty more Who do the same thing, but he is the only one who has ever had the honesty openly to admit it."
Iu explaining that he should probably be unable to accept an invitation. to dine with certain operatives, promoters of "short time," in Manchester, Mr. Ferraud makes this oracularly obscure statement-
" Should I not be able to join you, let me warn you against 4owing any one in whom you may confide, or have confided, to make your saer, a subject of barter for the advancement of any political object or personal advantage; for I have reason to believe that the most base and most perfidious public man that ever disgraced the page of history will hereafter attempt to enfold himself in its. hallowed mantle, to enable him once more to hold up his head in the House oi Commons, and there propose that the Ten-hours Factory Bill' Isbell form part. of an enlarged and comprehensive system' of legislation."
Lord Metcalfe, accompanied by Captain and Mrs. Brownrigg, Captain. Balfour, Captain Campbell, and a numerous suite, arrived at Mivares Hotel on Wednesday; passengers by the Britannia, from Canada.
Mr. Basil Montague, Accountant-General iu Bankruptcy, has retired upon a pension and has been succeeded by Mr. Richard Clarke, the Lord Chancellor's Secretary in Bankruptcy. The salary is 1,5001. a year. Mr. John Barnes, one of the Registrars, has also retired, with "adequate com- pensation," and is succeeded by Mr. Orme; a connexion, as the Morning Chronicle insinuates, of Lord Lyndhurst's family.
Tuesday's Gazette notified that the Queen had appointed Mr. Alexander Pringle Registrar of Sasines in Scotland.
Mr. Stokes, a distinguished member of Cambridge University, and late Secretary of the Camden Society, was received into the Roman Catholic. Church on Sunday last, at St. Chads, Birminghani, in the presence of a very large congregation. The number of recent converts to the Church of Rome now exceeds seventy, of whom more than thirty are clergymen or the Establishment.—Morning Post, Dec. 17.
Mr. Wordsworth the poet has been elected a member of the Royal Irish Academy.
Dr. Alexander, the Bishop of Jerusalem, who was travelling in Egypt, died of apoplexy, in the desert not far from Cairo, at the latter end of No- vember. The Bishop was accompanied by his wife and daughter.
A gentleman in our office has with great labour made the following computation of the capital required for the railways deposited with the Board of Trade. For England, 334,400,0001.; Scotland, 30,000,0001.; Ireland, 25,000,0001.; total capital, 389,400,0001. Of this amount many of the lines are duplicates; and in some cases, three, four, five, and six plans, are deposited for the same scheme, or schemes to the same place. That will not affect the amount of deposits, if they are all made; which would be 29,250,0001., or 10 per cent on three-fourths of the amount of the capital. But the deposit is only required to be on three-fourths of the estimates; which deposit may not be 20,000,0001. We think we may fairly say not two-thirds of this sum will be deposited.—Herapath's Journal.
A society was organized at the London Tavern, on Thursday, for the purpose of enabling persons who had engaged in railway speculations to prosecute claims for the recovery of deposits, and to enable them also to resist the demands of pro- visional committees for payment of alleged expenses.
The Dutchess of Bedford officiated for her husband in breaking ground for the Bedford and Birmingham Railway, on Saturday.
The ceremony of cutting the first turf in the Manchester public parks took place on Monday sennight, on the Hendam Hall estate, Harpurhey. The London and York Railway Company have rejected terms of absorption which were offered to them by Mr. Hudson on behalf of the Eastern Counties Railway.
A project is in contemplation for laying along the line of the Birmingham and Gloucester Railway. pipes for the conveyance of brine from the salt-pits of Dinka
wich and Stoke Prior, to Gloucester; to be manufactured there into salt. -
It may bamentioned, as a proof of the immense amount of business now being carried on by manufacturers of locomotives, that no firm engaged in the trade will contract to supply engines in less than three years.—Newcastle Journal. [It should be remembered that this trade forms in many respects an exceptional case; its state having but a slight and indirect reference to the general state of trade.]
Some valuable luggage was stolen at a railway station in Leicester, last week.. j Mr. Cooper, a London jeweller, had left a large box, containing jewellery, plate* and money, at the station; and during his absence it-vras claimed, and earned away by two foreigners, a man and a woman. The thieves were pursued without loss of time, and were apprehended at Nottingham, with the property in their possession.
Messrs. Keeling and Hunt, of Mossment Yard, state in a letter to the Times, that they have sent a sample of soup manufactured in Sydney, to the Duke of Norfolk, with a request that he would favour them with an order for the benefit of the poor, in whose behalf he is so earnest. In a note to the Duke, they men- tion that the colonists are anxious to cultivate the soup-trade with England; and " as a good profit is realized by the tallow obtained from the other parts of the ox, they are disposed to send the beef as a concentrated soup to England at a Tay cheap rate, provided encouragement can be given for the same." As an inducement to his Grace to patronize this new manufacture, Messrs. Keeling and Hunt jocularly suggest that a small quantity of " curry" would improve the flavour.
At the Strand Sessions, the other day, application was made on the part of a person named Harris, a housekeeper living in Holywell Street, for a remission of the parish-rates, on the ground of extreme old age-a hundred and five years. The Collector of St. Clement Danes stated, that on account of the great age of the applicant he was relieved every quarter. The Chairman said that he could not think of taking a rate from such a person.
The Brazilian sailors left Exeter Gaol on Saturday, and proceeded to London; where they were placed on board a vessel bound for the Brazils, their expenses defrayed by the Consul-General. Majaval returns to Spain.
An English gentleman, Sir Lawrence Jones, was killed by brigands on the 7th November, when travelling between 'Steen and Smyrna, with a friend. His com- panion, Captain Twopenny, was severely wounded.
The Emperor Napoleon's favourite Mameluke, Roustan, died on Sunday last, at Dourdan, (Seine-et-Oise,) where he had been living upon a small income of 5,000 or 6,000 francs, derived chiefly from the sale of the presents given by Napoleon and his family.
It has been noticed that the apples introduced this year from the United States into the London markets are much more affected than those of this country, and that few will keep. The disease is equally extensive and analogous in its propa- gation to that so general in potatoes.-Morning Post.
Much damage has been sustained on the Essex coast by the immense tide in the Thames last week. Towns have been partially and villages completely Hooded; and in rural districts much agricultural produce has been swept away. Many years, it is said, must pass before the marsh lands which have been inundated can be rendered fit for cultivation.
The Magistrate at the Lambeth Police-office received on Tuesday areport from one of the officers as to the condition of the sufferers by the overflow of the Thames at London on the same night. The officer stated that he had visited twelve families occupying small cottages in Wellington Grove, Lambeth; and he had found them in a direleorable condition, most of them having lost not only their furniture but the im ements and machinery by which they obtained a living. Temporary relief had been extended to the sufferers, by the parish authorities: and the Magistrate directed 21. to be applied to the same object.