23 OCTOBER 1841, Page 1


With the exception of the Leeds working-class meeting, to which we adverted last week by anticipation, the last in this assemblage of events is the most notable : it seems to be one of the worst of the many blows which the spurious political agitation of Ireland has received. Nor are other things want- ing to make its decline apparent. Mr. O'CONNELL fastens upon the appointment of Mr. BREWSTER to be Law-Adviser to the Lord-Lieutenant as if it were a prime grievance, because Mr. i3aEwsrstr stands charged with ejecting some Catholic tenants, and as if the Liberator were conscious that the Catholic zeal wanted stimulating just at present. One week he eulogized Sir EDWARD SUGDEN'S choice of Mr. O'LEARY, a Catholic, for an appointment in the Bankruptcy Court; but that eulogy once made for the ease- ment of his conscience, he dwells repeatedly on the unpopular ap- pointment, as the one which characterizes the Administration. His anxiety to turn it to the best account is explained, partly by the assertion of the Dublin Evening Mail, a Tory paper, that the mo- derate Catholics are prepared to pay their court to the moderate Conservative Lord-Lieutenant, and partly by Mr. O'CoNNELL's own complaint that there are many defaulters among the richer Catholics of Dublin: in one ward alone, fifty wealthy Catholics have disfranchised themselves by neglecting to pay their rates, and stand self-excluded from the approaching political struggle, which is to result in making Mr. O'CossEu. Mayor of Dub- lin. Perhaps his promise, that all the officers of the Corpora- tion shall be Repealers—a promise upon which he insists as much as if he felt it doubtful—was not very tempting to the wealthy Catholics ; more probably, they are sick of aimless agitations, shaped to suit, not the aspirations and energies of enlightened men, but the ignorance and prejudices of a semibarbarous populace. His larger and more imposing projects failing, Mr. O'CoissELL's imme- diate enterprise has dwindled down to a crusade against the Dublin shopkeepers, especially the cutlers. The Dublin shopkeepers, though Mr. O'Cosnsm.r. assures them Irish knives are cheapest and best, persist in selling English knives ; because, it is shrewdly suspected, the English manufacturers give them the longer credit. Mr. O'CoN- altr.r. has no mercy for the shopkeepers' pecuniary arrangements: first of all, his adherents prosecute the recusant cutlers—they did that last week; and then, this week, we learn that the Liberator has pro- ceeded against them in a more wholesale fashion—he has moved that nobody should deal with a tradesman who does not take a pre- scribed pledge that he will sell none but Irish goods, and fix it up in his shop. That is the fiat of' the Repeal Board of Trade. It is exceedingly probable that such a plan will advance the cause of Repeal among the middle class—among their customers the wealthy Catholics, whom Mr. O'CONNELL already finds so tractable—and among the Protestants, all English by sympathy, and habituated to the use of English conveniences and fineries! That being the degenerate state of' Mr. O'CceutELL's mission, out comes this de- claration against Repeal by SHARMAN CRAWFORD. Mr. CRAW., FORD is not coward enough proprio motu to strike a falling foe ; but Mr. O'CoNNELL had especially invited and challenged suet de- clarations. He has had his wish; and the pleasure with which he receives the compliance is shown in his calling honest SHARMAN- CRAWFORD an "Anglo-Saxon rat" for his pains. Mr. CRAW- FORD'S letter goes to prove to the followers of O'CONNELL, that if Repeal were possible it would be injurious to Ireland ; that it is impossible; and that such being the case, the agitation in pursuit of it is delusive and mischievous, distracting Ireland, and diverting its energies from practicable and proper objects. There is nothing - new either in the gist or the arguments of the address; but it is well-timed ; and its calm and rational manner, coming among the self-excited turbulence of the Dublin Corn Exchange, is calculated to shake the belief of many a worthy Repealer, whose faith already totters under the influence of satiety and imperfect success. It speaks the sense of the moderate Protestant Reformers of Ireland. No influential party seems disposed to release Mr. O'CosavErz. from the scandal and ridicule of his squabble with the cutlers.