As to the assertion that Ireland is suffering materially and
commercially from the results of the Union, Lord Derby said that it was physically impossible, since, in the first place, Ireland had improved more rapidly in these respects in the last fifty years than any other section of the United Kingdom ; and in the second place, the north-east portion of Ireland had had precisely the same conditions to contend with as any other part of Ireland so far as the Union is concerned, and yet the north-east part of Ireland is one of the richest and most flourishing portions of the United Kingdom. In arguing for the creation of a large peasant-proprietary in Ireland, Lord Derby said that he did not fear the new landlords, who would be thus created, falling into the same unpopularity as the old, since, in the first place, they would certainly be resident landlords, while in the disturbed districts they would almost always be Catholics and have the priests on their side. Nor did he think that amongst the small proprietors created out of tenant- farmers, there would be any temptation to sublet. That last prognostic is, we fear, questionable. We fear that the ten- dency to sublet may spring up again only too strongly, and that it may lead to great difficulties, though not, we hope, difficulties endangering the rights of property. Lord Derby was certainly right in saying that while there is " no country in the world where men are more ready than in Ireland to resist authority when they think it is feeble, so there is none where they are more ready to yield to it when they see it is strong." That is the most important of all the canons for a successful Irish administration.