Debatesi anti 19racceDingl fit Varliaturnt.
The Irish Municipal Bill went through its last formal stage in the House of Lords on Monday ; without discussion, for there was nothing left to discuss, the only motion atter the third reading being that the bill should now " pass."
On Thursday, the amendments made by the Lords came under con. sideration in the Commons. The amendments having been read a first time, Lord JOHN RUSSELL prefaced a motion for the second reading, he a statement of the course he intended to pursue respecting them. MI rejoiced that the Lords had seen fit to abandon the position they took up in 1836, when they refused to grant Corporations to Ireland. But there his satisfaction elided ; for the more closely he examined the alterations made by the Lords in the present bill, the more decided was his conviction that the bill as it now stood could not be accepted by the Commons. The alterations were of the most extensive kind, Twenty-six clauses had been left out, ninety-two new ones added, and many others had been so changed as to effect an object entirely differ. eat from that for which they were originally framed. He did not think that the Lords bad paid sufficient attention to the measure. It had been a month away from the Commons, but he questioned whether it had received six hours' consideration in the Upper House. This would of itself be a sufficient reason to send back the amendments to the Lords for more mature deliberation. Lord John then stated the
general nature of the alterations. The original bill saved all rights to which freemen were entitled by birth, servitude, or marriage; but the Lords had added the words "and all rights to which they may become entitled,"—a suspicious amendment as regarded the city of Dublin, avhere an anomalous practice existed of admitting Icemen by the cos. porate body, who had not the claims which the Irish Reform Au and
which the present bill as framed by the Commons, recognized. ("No, no ! " front Mi. Shaw.) Well, then, without going into a minute ex.
amination of the legal operation of the amendment, he hoped there would he no objection to alter the clause so as to make it con.
formable to the Irish Reform Act. A lar,:e class of the Lords' amend.
meats were intended to preserve to members of the existing corporations rights, offices, powers, and privileges, which it was the object oldie Corn. mots to tranfer to newly-constituted bodies. The present Corpora. than trustees of charities, and for lighting, paving. arid cleansing the towns, were to continue in office ; whereas in England, under the Col. poration Act, the powers possessed by the abolished corporations were given to the new corporations. The present corporations were empowered to mortgage their property for debts due before the passing of the act ; now, was it riot probable that the whole of the property would he mortgaged for debts which nobody had ever heard of P The sulmicion he entertained was not his individual fancy, for the Legisla. Lure had declared the existing corporators unfit to exercise the audio. rity they held. Another amendment preserved in their places the en- tire body of the present local officers, Town. Clerks, Bailiffs, Tree. curers, Weighinasters, Assaymasters, Clerks of Alarkets, and others, in all the boroughs whose corporations were abolished by the bill, mail they shall be removed by Commi-sinners who might be appointed under the act, Of it there were no Commissioners, by the Lord-Lieu- tenant. Now this was a provision not only for retaining certain per. sons in offii.e, but for the preservation of the abuses which it was the object of the bill, as it passed the Commons, to remove. Various other provisions were carefully framed to take from the Town-Coun- cils to be elected under the act that control over the corporate property which Town-Councils in England and Scotland possessed. These amendments were framed with the interested, narrow-minded, perhaps factious view, of preserving as much power as possible to the old, and giving as little as possible to the new corporations: it was for Parlia- ment to consider whether the peace and good government of Ireland would be best secured by such a policy. Lord John contended that it was most impolitic to deprive the new Town-Councils of essential functions ; leaving them in fact little to do but to debate, and with. drawing their attention from the local concerns on which it was so desirable that their attention should be fixed. If political agitation should follow the establishment of elective corporations, the anthers of the amendments would have only themselves to thank for the mischief, With respect to the amendment which limited the bestowal of corpo. rations to twelve towns, leaving others to be governed in a different manlier, though be could not say that he concurred in it, he was not then prepared to object to it. There were it number of new clauses mid provisions relating to the boundaries of towns, which the House would not have sufficient time to consider, since they could only be discussed at the present stage of the bill. Ile thought they should form
the groundwork of another measure, which might go through its sepa.
rate stages in that House. [Here Lard John Russell, with other :Members, was summoned to a conference with the Lords on the Scotch Sheriffs' Courts Bill. On his return he resumed his speech.] The power of appointing Sheriffs had burn taken entirely from the Council and given to the Crown. A very great alteration had been made in the franchise. The five-Found rating had been changed to a ten-pound rating; and instead of a six months' occupancy. (though six months had been preserved in one of the clauses,) twelve months' occupancy and rating net need to be required by a subsequent clause. The preamble of a bill for the registration of voters in Ireland, intro. duvet! by Mr. Sergeant Jackson, Sir William Follett, mid Mr. Emer- son Temment, declared that six months' rt•siikure was necessary for a Par- liamentary voter ; but one of the et this bill enacted that twelve months' residence would be required. Coupling this with the altera- tion in the Corporations Bill, he hail no doubt that the object was to restrict time right of voting, by requiring a larger term of residence than was no 111 necessary. He would now state what he meant to propose with regard to the amendments which he had explained. He should move that the House entirely disagree with that class of amendments which preserved to the present corporators certain trusts, powers, and authorities, not retained for the old English corporators by the English Act. He would agree to the limitation of the corporations to the eleven towns in schedule A but instead of the cumbrous machinery by which it was provided that the local concerns of other towns whose corporations were abolished should be managed by commissioners, he should prefer that the provi- sions of the 9th George the Fourth be extended to them, if they made no application fOr corporations within twelve months after the passing of the bill. To the boundary clauses he would add a proviso, giving to the Lord- Lieutenant authority to include suburbs, and make a better division of wards on application from the inhabitants. He would re- store the clause respecting the appointment of Sheriffs. (By this clause the Town-Councils selected three persons, of whom the Lord. Lieutenant was to choose one.) On the subject of the franchise, Lord John descanted at some length ; but be ended with a proposition to fie the qualification (in effect) at eight pounds with rating, to be escer. med in the ic following way. He would provide that one-fourth of the at whh a house was rated should be added to that sum, for re. pairs, insurance, and other charges. When the two sums added toge- ther made ten pounds, the occupant acquired the right of voting ; which iquivalent to a provision that a rated house of St rent shall confer the equivalent
franchise. Lord John considered this a far easier and better mode of ascertaining the real value than that proposed in the Lords' amend- ment; for there would be constant variations and exaggerations and difficulty respecting the amount to be set down for repairs and in- surance, which by the fixed sum of 23 per cent. would be avoided. sLuoid John concluded with an appeal to the Opposition to deal fairly sad liberally with this question ; and since they bad resolved not to withhold municipal privileges from the Irish people, to grant them with confidence and in a generous spirit.
Sir ROBERT PEEL would willingly have discussed the amendments as they were proposed, on the separate clauses, and this he considered would have been the most convenient course ; but Lord John Russell bad adopted a line of proceeding which prevented Sir Robert from soon as his own sense of justice and expediency dictated. Lord John bad indulged in undue, unwise, and unjustifiable sarcasms on the authors of the amendments,—sarcasms which, if not intended, were calculated to throw obstructions in the way of settling this important question. tion The noble lord began by venting a sarcasm on the Lords for having changed their opinions. (" No, no!" from Lord John Rus- sell.) Sir Robert begged Lord John's pardon ; he had begun by stating, that heretofore the Lords had refused corporate privileges to the Irish people, because they were not fit for them. That was not the true ground of objection : the Lords were willing to relinquish the existing corporations ; but, on account of the state of society and the violent party conflicts in Irelund, were averse to establishing new ones. He thought that it ill became Lord John Russell to taunt the Lords with a change dictated by their desire to conciliate the Irish people— .c When he recollected the changes of opinion which had taken place with respect to Irish measures,—when he recollected the opinions formerly given with respect to Poor-laws by some gentlemen who were now the most strenuous opposers of them, and who thought the establishment of Poor-laws in Itelon41 a sufficient justification fur the repeal of the Union,—when he mentioned the dis- cussions which had taken place with respect to the Irish Church, and the course (he thought the wise course) which the noble lord load taken in receding from the opinions he had formerly maintained upon that subject,---with all these things fresh in his recollection, he thought that the nubte lord was the very last person from whom a sarcasm might have been expected upon those who, for the sake of peace, had been desirous to tease a sacrifice with respect to Ireland.
He denied that the bill as amended by the Lords had been fairly described by Lord John Russell. The Lords not merely " allowed," they compelled &even of the principal towns in Ireland to take corpo- rations; and they permitted every town in Ireland which had 3,000 inhabitants to apply for a charter of incorporation ; and in any town, with or without corporations, a majority of the ten-pound householders might on application have the present corporation continued, or a new one framed on the principle of the present bill. It was a complaint against the Lords that they had inserted a vast number of new clauses respecting boundaries : the fact was, they bad incorporated the entire Boundary Bill of the Government—they bad taken the boundaries fixed by Commissioners appointed by Lord John Russell himself. Lord Melhourns bad distinctly declared that he considered this incor- poration of the Boundary Bill, to which Lord John Russell objected, an improvement of the measure. In this way the great number of new clauses was accounted for. The House had two bills before it,
instead of one. The other clauses gave effect to the proposition which he ( Sir Robert) had made as the basis of a measure to which the party he was connected with could agree. Then it was admitted on the 111inisterial side of the House, that when all the conflicting interests and opinions were considered, be had gone further than could have been expected for the sake of conciliation. But it was not only with the alterations that Lord John Russell quarrelled : he said that they had not been duly considered—that the Municipal Bill had re- ceived much less attention than the Poor Bill— Whose fault was that? Whose fault was it that the Irish Municipal Corp°. lion Bill was sent up to the Lords on the etith of June ? By whom was it that the day for the Coronation of her Majesty was fixed for the :Nth of June; be- ing the very time when it must have been known beforehand that the attention of Parliament would be indispensably required to all the most pressing and all the most important business of the session ? Who did not know, with the in- vitations which had been given to every nation in Europe to send representa- tives to do honour to the Sovereign of England, and with the natural desire which men of all classes would naturally feel to do honour to those who came to do honour to the Queen—who did not know, that, at such a time, it would be difficult indeed to direct the undivided attention of Parliament to the business of the session? Therefore, those who fixed the Coronation fur the ttslth of June, and sent up the Irish Corporation Bill to the [louse of Lords on the 26th of June, were the parties who were responsible if this bill dill not receive the mature and deliberate consideration which the noble lord deemed necessary. (" Hear, hear, hear ! ") But whose fault was it that the amendments were not more fully discussed in the Muse of Lords? Those who proposed amend- ments to a bill naturally expected that the objections to those amendments would come from the persons who dissented from them : it was not usual for those who proposed and supported an amendment to object to it also, for the make of raising a discussion. (Laughter and cheers.) Certain noble lords pro- posed amendments, to give effect to a scheme to the general outline and princi- pleof which they hoped there would be no insuperable objection. Why did not the noble lord's colleagues in the [louse of Lords consider those amendments more fully? If they were defective in point of legal detail, where was the Lord Chancellor, or the other high legal authorities? Why did they not consider the propositions which were made? Was not public notice given that in committee new clauses would be moved? Whose duty was it, then, to be ready to discuss every portion of the measure, to defend that which they believed to be good, and to resist to the utmost every innovation or every addition which they believed to be bad? If blame were to attach anywhere for not giving sufficient atten- Com to the bill, upon whose head should it fall? But this was not all. if the objections to the amendments in the measure were really so strong as the noble lard had stated them to be, why did the head of the Government move the third reading of the bill in the other House? ( Cheers.) Why did not the noble Premier refuse to move the third reading of the bill until the clauses were emended, and the measure moulded into the form in which he wished to see it? (Much cheering.)
The amendments, it seemed, were regarded by Lord John Russell • with great suspicion : indeed, be never saw a man who laboured more strongly under the pains and pangs of jealousy. So blinded was he by this passion, that he actually wounded himself—absolutely raised ob- jections to his own bill, under the impression that what he attacked was the work of the Lords. 011 reading over the clause respecting the rights of the Dublin freemen, Sir Robert declared he could not die- cover what Lord John objected to-
o Lord Joust RUSSELL explained, that his objection was to the words " or may hereafter have been entitled to."
Sir Ronewr PEEL begged Lord John to take care, for the words were his own.
Lord JOHN RUSSELL—" No, no! "
Sir ROBERT PEEL read the words of the 4th clause, as proposed by Lord John Russell. The words were—" any person who now is or hereafter may be an inhabitant of any borough, and also any person who has been admitted or might hereafter have been admitted."
(Much laughter and cheering.) Sir Robert thought he had shown the injustice of Lord John Russell's suspicions of the covert and secret intentions of the Lords. He disclaimed any intention of obtaining for the freemen any privileges to which they were not entitled under the Reform Act ; and thought they might come to tin amicable ar- rangement on the 4th clause. With respect to the Charity Trustees, Lord John Russell's own bill provided for the continuance of the pre- sent trustees till the Lord Chancellor should anoint new ones ; but the Lords only gave the Lord Chancellor tLe po vsr of filline, up vacan- cies, not of appointing entirely fresh bodies. New he distinctly disap- proved of the manner in which the Lord Chancellor had performed the duty of appointing Charity Trustees in England; and lie dissented from the proposition to give the Irish Chancellor—himself of course closely connected with the Government—the power of appointing whole bodies of trustees. Ile would, however, accede to any arrange- ment fur preventing charity trusts from being perverted to party pur- poses ; and as the phoise " charity trusts " was held legally to com- prise municipal and other trusts., he would agree to an amendment strictly limiting the operation of the enactment to charitable trusts. In fact, it was through a mistake only that the precaution had not been taken. With respect to the limitation of the control of the Corpora- tions over their Felicity, the Lords had only extended to other towns the rule which Lord .Tulin Hassell had himself applied to Dublin, when lie directed that the surplus funds after carrying the net into ef- fect, should be devoted to the purposes of paving, cleansing, lighting, and supplying the city with water. Ile now came to clause 97th, on which Lord John Russell lost all self-possession. lie had described that clause as authorizing the old corporations to dispose of all the cor- porate property for other than corporate purposes. But what was the fact ? Why, the clause referred to the new corporations. not to the old. There was no intention to give the old corporations any new power ; and if the clause did give it, he was ready to mutter the clause. All that was wished for was, that, in conformity with the English Act, the new Irish corporations might dispose of property to satisfy old cl iirns. The amended bill had been misrepresented with regard to the retention of old officers it, in fact, only secured to them compensa- tion,—giving the new corporations the power of appointing new officers. The new corporations were not allowed to control the police. The Lords did not think it necessary to have a new police separate from the Constabulary ; and Lord John Russell himself proposed to take from the Dublin Corporation the control of the police, and vest it in the Lord- Lieutenant. Isold John imposed to do very much the same thing in London. With respect to the appeintinent of Sheriffs' Sir Robert ad- hered to his opinion that the Lord Lieutenant ought to have it, without the intervention of the Town-Councils whose recommendation after all he might reject. He admitted that am clauses respecting Commis- sioners were cumbrous ; but if they had not been made, the Lords would have been blamed for haste. Sir Hobert then adverted to the franchise. Ile considered that there was no substantial difference be- tween the franchise adopted 14 the Lords and that which he had pro- posed, and which it was always said might be modified by the abate- ment of the landlord's repairs and insurance. Lie should be prepared to resist Lord John Russell's proposition fur lowering the franchise. Ile professed his willneness to settle the whole question in the spirit of amicable compoeni ; but denied, if the attempt should fail, that he and his friends would be responsible for the consequences of the failure.
The Clerk now read the Lords' amendments seriatim.
The first alteration WAS proposed by 1Ir. ( Attorney-General
for Ireland, ) int clause ; and provided that persons seeking to be enrolled as trettineu of Dublin should prove their claims before a per- son appointed by the Lord. Lienten int. This was agreed to.
Lord Jou x Rte.:sloe. proposed to alter clause 6th, relating to boun- daries, by etno nevi ing the Led Lieutenant to alter the boundaries within twelve months from the passing of the bill.
The motion was opposed by Sir Romer Peal., Mr. SIlAw, Mr. GOULBUICS, amid Lord S NLET ; supported by Lord MOSPETH, Mr. WA Mr. O'CtiNS ; and ea: ried WI a division, Ihy Ill to 103. Lord John Rossi:Lt. promote! to alter the 13th or qualification
clause, by imtking au idlowance of cent. to the occupier in lieu of all charges—rates, taxes, repairs, and insurance.
Sir Romer Pees opposed the motion, as introducing an entirely
new principle into the bill ; for it deducted not only landlord's but tenant's charges—such as were mild by tenants in England and Scot- land. There would be no diffieulty in ascertaining the amount of the landlord's repairs and insurance; for the separate columns in time valuation and rating ',dole of the Poor law would show it. Yet, with that accurate return at hand, a conjectural and uniform average value was to be preferred ! Lord Moitto..rti defended the proposed alteration. It would be more convenient, and there would in the gross be nu great dispropor- tion between Lord John Russell's and Sir Robert Peel's proposal.
Mr. Hums; regretted the disposition to concede to a party not to be met by concession. He was astonished that Irish Members could sit quietly by while such propositions were made. He thought that in Ireland, as in England, every rate-payer should have a vote. Lord STANLEY reminded Mr. Hume tl.at there were no poor-rates in Ireland.
Mr. Home—" But there soon will be."
Lord STANLEY said, that the English Municipal Bill required pay- ment of rates for three years: would Mr. Hume postpone the Irish Municipal Bill for three years ?
Mr. O'CONNELL regretted that the time of the House should be wasted in this discussion. The bill was a mere mockery. Delusion was substituted for open insult. With great reluctance he supported Lord John Russell's eight.pound franchise, as better than that pro- posed on the other side.
Sir EDWARD SUGuEN pledged his existence that the amended bill would give Ireland the same franchise as Scotland.
Mr. SHELL enlarged on the difficulty of ascertaining correctly the amount of landlord's repairs and insurance, and the temptation to raise the amount of both for the sake of obtaining the franchise. It bad cost the Irish Members some sacrifice of pride and feeling to agree to Lord John Russell's proposition ; but they were very anxious to settle this question ; aid they had a right to expect an advance from the other side, since the Government had descended from the high ground first taken up. Lord Stanley objected to the proposal of the English franchise for Tri land because three years' rating was neces- sary: would be consent that in 1841 the English system should come into operation, the Scotch practice being in the mean while adopted ?
Sir ROBERT INGLIS said that great sacrifices had been made on his side of the House. They had surrendered the Corporations, the strongholds of Protestantism ; and be grieved at it.
Mr. SPRING RICE contended, that the offer now made to the Oppo- sition was fair and just, and one which they might long regret having rejected.
Mr. E. TURNER supported the Ministerial proposal.
The House divided—
For the Lords' franchise 154 For Lord John Russell's 169 Ministerial majority 15
The words " other local cesses" were struck out of the 13th clause, by a vote of 162 to 144.
Clause 14th, which provided for the payment of taxes at the Bank of Ireland or the Provincial Bank, having been struck out by the Lords, was reinserted, by a majority of 157 to 137.
The provision in clause 58th, for obliging civil officers to take oaths when entering office, was struck out.
The provision in clause 68th, giving a specific compensation to Town-Clerks, was struck out ; and the discussion was adjourned to Friday.
THE IRISH ESTIMATES.
The Commons, on Monday, went into Committee on the Irish Mis- cellaneous Estimates.
The only discussion of any length was on the proposal that 8,928/. be granted to the Roman Catholic College of Maynooth.
Colonel SIBMORPP, Colonel VERNER, and Colonel PERCEVAL op- posed the grant.
Mr. SPRING Rice and Lord MORPETH supported it.
Mr. O'CONNELL did not like it, because it violated the Voluntary principle, which he supported—
If the three gallant Colonels, whom he looked upon as the Church militant of the House, would divide upon the question, he would divide with them against the grant. But they did not divide, they only talked. There now, there was a council of war being held between them. [The three Colonels at the moment had their heads together, and Mr. O'Connell's observation was re- ceived with loud laughter.] " Oh, these gallant Colonels ! 1 must venture a parody against them- " Three Colonels, in three distant counties born,
Did Lincoln, Sligo. and Armagh adorn: The first in gravity of face surpassed—The nest, srdniety —in grace the last.
The Force of Nature could no rotate,. go; To heard the kat, she shaved the other two." (Roars of laughter.) The sum of 50,0001. was voted for the purpose of National Educa- tion in Ireland.
For various charitable institutions in Dublin, grants to the amount of 60,000/. were made.
For the salary of Lord Morpeth, as Chief Secretary, 5,500/.
Colonel SIBTIIORPE could not see why the Irish Secretary should have more than the Home Secretary ; and gave Lord Morpeth warn- ing, that next year he should move to reduce it by 1,5001.
During this discussion, the House was very thin; and once an at- tempt was made to count it out.
The House of Commons, on Monday, went into a Committee on the Civil List Act, on the motion of
Mr. SPRING RICE; who proceeded to call attention to the report of the Select Committee on the Pension-list. Mr. Rice explained and defended the course adopted by the Committee in their examination of the pensions; and congratulated Members, and the country generally, on the proof which bad been obtained, that except in rare instances, the pensions granted had been well earned by the recipients themselves, or by their near connexions. He read letters from three ladies,—Mrs. Mortimer, daughter of General Carey, Lady Popham, widow of Sir Home Popham, and Mrs. Procter, widow of Dr. Procter,—who stated, in language which Mr. Rice described as " truly beautiful" and " of true simplicity," the circumstances under which their pen- sions had been granted and the hardship which the withdrawal of them would occasion. He also explained the circumstances under which pensions were paid to two French ladies, nieces of the late Due de Biron-
Admiral Rodney was in Paris shortly before he proceeded to his command in
the West Indies, and being in it pecuniary embarrassment, was arrested. The Due de Biron, believing tt uoworthy of a great nation that a gallant ()Wen. should be deprived of the means of performing his duty to his stepped for ward and paid the sum for which he was detained. Lord ita!,,n was accordingly released ; and the almost mined:ate consequenee was, a limit victory and an important service to his country. The Revolution 1a poor and unprotected in England. George the Third, hearing of this, cent fur them, and personally assured them, that, as a debt of gratitude, this moan would rank them among those whose claims to a pension were fouudrd
France broke out, and the nieces of the noble Frenchman found thern,:1,,, v honour and justice.
Mr. Rice was rather facetious about the ages of the lady pea.
sioners. There was some difficulty, it seems, in obtaining In one instance, it appeared that the number of annual paymot, exceeded the number of years to which the lady 1. owned." It was a great relief to him that Mr. Sanford, Chairman of the Commit. tee, had undertaken to make the necessary inquiries on this head. Rice read a paper of calculations drawn up by Mr. Finlayson, fists which it appeared that the savings on the Pension-list by the droppil in of lives would be—
Finally, Mr. Rice moved, " That provision be made out of the Consolidated Fund of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ire. land, to defray the charge of such pensions as, prior to the accession of her Majesty, were charged upon the Consolidated Fund, under the authority of the Act 2 and 3 Will. I V. cup. 116, upon the Civil List, and upon the Four-and.a.balf per Centum Duties."
Mr. WAR BURTON said, that before the money was voted, Members ought to have the report of the Committee in their hands long enough for the ink to dry on it—
He had not had half an hour to make himself master of the recommetalt. tiara of the Committee, and to look for the different claims of the different classes of pensioners on whose cases they were about to resolve. If any Mem. ber would support him, he would move the adjournment of tho further tom aideration of this matter until such a day as might be suitable.
Sir ROBERT PEEL bad heard nothing which altered his original opinion of the impropriety of any inquiry at all ; though he did not mean to impugn the manner in which the Committee had performed their duties. He was bound, however, to say, that be did not under. stand the grounds on which some pensions had been withdrawn; and he observed that in some cases the decision had been come to on the casting-vote of the Chairman, arid in others perfectly analogous by a large majority. This was not satisfactory ; and they whose pensions were retained would feel that they owed them not to the bounty of the Crown, but to the accidental decision of the Committee.
Mr. SANFORD spoke briefly in defence of the inquiry, and of the manner in which it was conducted.
The resolution was agreed to ; on the understanding that the vote then come to was merely formal, and did not pledge the House in any way when the discussion should be resumed.
On Tuesday, the resolution was reported, and a bill ordered to be brought in. The bill, called the " Pensions Bill," was brought in and read a first time on Wednesday, and a second time on Thursday. It passed through these stages without discussion. In 1839 £4,935 1844 34.334 1849 67,294 1854 90,901 1859 104,874 LORD DURHAM'S PROCEEDINGS IN CANADA.
Lord BROUGHAM, on Monday, called the attention of the Lords to two ordinances issued by the Earl of Durham. According to the
American papers, the Governor. General of Canada had issued two ordinances, which, if Lord Durham presumed—ay, he repeated the
word—if he presumed to carry into effect, he would be guilty of murder—
So gross and so outrageous was the violation of British law to be found in these ordinances, that he did not believe that any man who ever had a gown upon his shoulders as a lawyer could have given his advice for their promulga- thin. The accounts that he referred to stated, with respect to those ordinauees, that a Special Council had been appointed, consisting not of Canadians, but of persons not belonging to the province, and thin of them personally dependent upon Lord Durham. Three of that same Council were the Military Secretary, the Aide.de-Cainp, and the Public Secretary of Lord Durham, namely, Mr. Buller. The accounts then proceeded to state that the Council had issued two proclamations. One of these proclamations declared that certain persons had come in and confessed they were guilty of the crime of rebellion ; and there- fore, without bringing them to trial, Lord Durham's sentence was that they should all, untried, be transported to a certain place, Bermuda ; and with the addition that they should be put to death if they left that place. Even if these persons had committed the crime of rebellion, they ought to have been tried; they could not he put to death without trial, and without sentence of death in due course of law. Even it' the Queen—if the Crown—had 'in a certain cue commuted the sentence of death to that of banishment, the man returniug from banishment could not be put to death. It was only after trial that a man could be ordered to be put to death. The returning (ruin trau.portation was made a capital felony by act of Parliament in certain cases; but here death was ordered without a trial, and without the regular sentence of the low to sanction it. This, however, was going upon the vulgar error, that a man who returned before the period of his banishment had expired could be put to death by any one There was, then, the case of Mr. Papineau and one or two others, who had not confessed themselves guilty of any crime.
Lord LYNDHURST said, that their confessions would only be evidence. Lord BROUGHAM continued—But they bad not confessed ; and men had been acquitted notwithstanding their confession. Yet Papi-
neau and the others were to be put to death, not confessing any thing, and not having been tried. Nothing was more monstrous than this. The act authorized Lord Durham to make a general law, but not to hang mesa without the form of law.
Lord ELLENBOROUGH had intended to bring this subject forward, but had been anticipated by Lord Brougham. There were other irre- gularities and illegalities, however, in Lord Durham's conduct, not noticed by Lord Brougham— A rule had been laid down, that between the proclamation for the convening of the Council and its proceeding to legislate, twenty-one days should elapse. ' This Council had been appointed on the 28th of June, and it bad proceeded to • legislate on the 28th of appointed Another thing that was done which was con- '
trash to rule was, that the ordinances were read a first, second, and third time on the same day. This was contrary to the standing orders of the Cenci.
Five persons only in been appointed as the Council; if five were not present, thee an illegality in the proceedings had occurred. The Council was said to have taken place on the 29th of June; and he found by the papers that one of thepersons named on the Council had not arrived until the evening of the '29th. Fie! were stated to have been present ; four of then were members of the Council, with Lord Durham, who was not a member of the Council. There CueII not be a matter which required more anxious deliberation than that which the Council had to determine. They had to draw a line of distinction between persons who were supposed to be criminal. They had upon certain persons to pass sentence of transportation, and also to be hung if they came hark. Then there were sixteen who were to be banished, and there were another sixteen who, although they had absconded, were yet absolutely pat- doned. They were all cases which required to be looked to most particularly ; and yet PO rapidly did the Council proceed, that the twenty.four cases which were to be considered deserving of mercy, had all been disposed of at one 'k- lieg. Be certainly should require to see all the documents ; as he thought it was a matter for grave consideration with the House, whether it would not inter- fere in a matter likely to be so mischievous and to bring cu touch disgrace upon the Goyim ument, as that which had occurred in Canada. Lord BROUGHAM added, that the ordinances referred to Upper Ca- vela as well as Quebec ; and that Lord Durham had no right to make Roy such orders.
Lord GLENELG was quite ready to produce the papers Lord Ellen- borough asked for, except some parts of Lord Durham's letters, which be could not produce. He warned the House against coming to a pre- mature decision that Lord Durham had acted improperly. The fact was, that Lord Durham had conciliated and gained the confidence of all parties. Lord BROUGHAM only complained of the proclamations, not of Lord Durham's general conduct. He appealed to any lawyer in the House, whether any British subject could be hanged without being tried, con- victed, and sentenced according to law.
Lord MELBOURNE deprecated this party attack on Lord Durham--.
Considering the manner in which this matter had been introiluced,—consider- ieg the state of affairs in Canada,—considering the great interests that were at stake,—considering the state of the empire and how deeply the empire might be affected by the affairs that were then taking place in that country,—it was, lie must say, in his opinion premature; it was In the highest degree imprudent, it was in the highest degree unpatriotic, it was in the highest degree unjustifi- able, thus to **orifice the interests of their country to the interests of party. It was in the highest degree unfair, in their desire to attack individuals, to per- mit such a proceeding as they then witnessed. It was wrong thus at once to condemn those acts of a noble lord, or what they deemed to be his acts, when they had not the best means of forming a judgment upon measures which the exigency of the circumstances and the state of the country might have con- vinced him were required. lie had uo objection to the production of the papers ; but he must say that he could not refrain from expressing his opinion and his feelings as to the course which had been pursued by noble lords.
Lord BROUGHAM absolutely and peremptorily dissented from Lord Melbourne's doctrine— Ile would tell the noble viscount, that it was not unpatriotic, that it was not premature, awl that it was not unjustifiable, but that it was absolutely neces- sary, that it was absolutely a matter of duty, for that House to keep a watchful superintendence over the exercise of such dictatorial powers as had been in- treated to the Governor of Canada. What had he been told during the passing of this bill? That Parliament would be always at hand ; that it would al- way,' superintend the exercise of the power's given by the bill ; that that House would be Moyers open to control any abuse of the powers given by the bill. Large and ample as the powers were, he was told that they would be controlled by Parliament. And Low, when Parliament was culled on to interfere, the powers of the bill were not merely exercised, but they were exceeded. When be had argued against the bill which gave such enormous powers, he had been Net with the reply, that Parliament would be always ready to interfere, and that the control of Parliament would always be at hand. Lord Melbourne had talked as if Lord Durham had powers under the act for what he had done, and as if he (Lord Brougham) was premature in discussing these acts. Lord Dur- ham had not the power to do that which had been dune in the ordinances he referred to. No such powers he contended for it, were given by the act.
What, then, was to be said, if, instead of exercising the powers given by the act, he had nun contrary to it ; and not only contrary to it, but to the laws and customs of England, when he condemned men to be executed who had never been tried? And he also said that, under such circumstances, sending a man to Bermuda, and ordering him to be hung if he returned, Lord Durham had as little right to do as he would have to order one of their Lordships to be banished to Botany Bay, or to massacre a man he might meet in the streets. As to Lord Durham's judging of the exigency of the circumstances and the necessity of the case, he asked, was it a matter of necessity to commit a felony far the good of the country ? was it necessary to hang a man who had never been tried, for the good of the public ? Talking of the good of the empire and the state of Canada never could justify for an iintaut the issuing of such ordi- elects.
Lord lireNFORD thought, that some explanation of Lord Durham's conduct ought to be given.
The papers being promised, the conversation dropped.
In the House of Commons, on the same evening, Sic JAMES GRA- HAM asked Lord John Russell, whether Sir Charles Paget had been really named a member of the Special Council by Lord Durham; for Sir Charles had a naval command which extended from the Gulf of idexico to the'Northern parts of the American continent ?
Lord JOHN RUSSELL replied, that the appointment had been made; but us five were necessary to form a Council, if Sir Charles could not attend, doubtless his place would be supplied by somebody else.
Suhsequently, on the some evening, the House being in a Committee of Supply, and the loan of 500,0001. having been proposed as an extra- ordinary grunt for the Army and Ordnance in the Canadas, Sir EDWARD SUGDEN suggested that the Special Council, as ap- pointed by Lord Durham, was scarcely legal, as the Act contemplated an Assembly, of which five should be a quorum, to control the Go. vernor-General ; but Lord Durham had formed a Council of only five Ferments, belonging to his staff and household.
Lord JOHN RUSSELL did not attach much weight to Sir Edward Sugden's merely technical objection. As to the persons appointed being members of Lord Durham's staff and household, a good reason had already been assigned for excluding Canadians, who ought not to be mixed up any more than was inevitable in the settlement of the affairs of their country, if it were desirable to exclude the suspicion Of the Government being influenced by one or the (Alter of the con.
t ending parties. Lord John then pressed upon the Committee the necessity of abstaining from Parliamentary discussion of every act which the Governor-General of Canada might deem necessary. tAn opportunity would be ritfarded for a full and fair discussion of Lord Durham's proceedings.
Sir June CAMVELs t. contended, that there was no ground for Sir Edward Sugden's doubts as to the legality of the acts of the Special Council. The act specified that the number of Councillors must not be less than five, and five had been appointed.
Mr. O'CONNELL highly applauded Lord Durham's conduct— Lord Durham was a despot. The question was, how had Lord Durham con- ducted himself with such despotic power ? He acknowledged, that having a high esteem for that nobleman's character, he was afraid he would have sacri fired it in the vain attempt to conciliate parties in Canada. His delight, how. ever, could hardly be expressed at that noble lord's success hitherto, for be had conciliated all parties there. Every letter that arrived expressed the satisfac- tion of the people of Canada at his proceedings. The noble lord had acted with a degree of perfect impartiality between the French-burn and the British. born Canadians, and between all sects of Christians; and they were all unani- mous in their expressions of regard for him. One of the first things that made the noble lord popular was the abolition of that very Council of which the right bououralde and learned gentleman had spoken. The last of his acts was signally admirable for its humanity. Governor Arthur had beengorging himself with the blood of these poor wretches, who—(" Ole, oh ! ",front the Opposition)—Yes ! he did gorge himself with the blood of his victims ; and there were many people in this country who would have encouraged him in going on with that blood-shedding system. But Lord Durham most properly interfered. He put out of the country all those men who had taken a guilty part in carrying un the insurrection, and be kept in banishment those who, having taken a len active part in the rebellion, had fled. That act had been followed up exceedingly well ; and the whole conduct which Loral Durham's government had hitherto adopted, was an earliest of his desire to establish per- manent peace in that country, without depriving the people of soy portion of their rights longer than was absolutely necessary to enable him to restore har- mony among them.
Sir CHARLES GREY could not agree with Sir Edward Sugden, that any doubt as to the legality of the acts of the Special Council was well-founded ; neither did he coincide in Mr. O'Connell's opinion that Lord Durhain was a despot— He begged to express his decided opinion that the act did not confer any despotic power on the Governor. General. The utmost it conferred was • legislative power to the Governor•General in Council, which was previously possessed by the Legislative Council and the House of Assembly. It would be ruinous to have it supposed that the power it conferred was despotic.
The money was voted without opposition.
ACCESS OF PARENTS TO CHILDREN.
Lord LYNDHURST, on Monday, moved the second reading of the Custody of Infants Bill. lle stated the law as it at present stood ; and referred to several cases which proved its liability to gross abuse, inasmuch as it prevented the access of a virtuous as well as vicious mother, living apart from her husband, to children who most needed maternal care and tenderness, while it enabled a brutal and profli- gate husband to retain entire control over his offspring, and exercise a most unnatural influence over an ill-used wife.
Lord 1311ot-cm:mat, with great pain to himself, opposed the motion- The hill, 1 e contended, would open the way to frightful cbatiges in the law of husband and wife, remove a powerful security for the preserva- tion of the morals of the people, and the proper rearing of children in their tender years. It was said that the law was an anomaly, and in- flicted extraorditmary hardship on the wife. But this was not the case. In many other resin eta the wife was subject to extreme injustice. All her goods and chattels were the property of her husband ; she might be compelled to labour for the subsistence of her family, and would have no remedy against the husband who lived in undisguised adultery with another woman upon her earnings. A man might falsely accuse his wife of adultery ; amid, after failing to prove the charge, live apart from her ; whose only resource would be un application in Doctors' Commons for restitution of conjugal rights, which no woman with feelings of delicacy could make. These were only a few of time hard- ships which women laboured under. The refusal, therefore, to allow them access to their children under certain circumstances, was no espe. dal injury—no anomaly, certainly. He was convinced that the prin- ciple of the law which gave the father the control of the children was sound ; and that it would be most unwise to abrogate it for the take of remedying the injustice which be fully admitted it did occasion in some instances. lie had been told by the Lord Chief Justice, that all the Judges, without exception, were opposed to the bill—all fifteen held up their thirty hands against it. It was indeed a measure for the rich, not for the poor— The party was to apply to the Judge ; and this was considered a very simple process by the framers of this bill; but, quite the contrary, it was one of the most complicated proceedings which could be taken up by one party or defended, by another. The husband would in most cases oppose the application, and then the whole of this troublesome proceeding would have to be gone through each time an interview was sought. Again, the wife was not to have access if she had been fuund guilty of adultery by the verdict of wjury ; but was there no adultery but what was found by a jury ? There had been case* now and thou of a husband actually being the best possible evidence of the guilt of Iris wife, and yet not being able to prove it. Cases had occurred, far instance, where the husband had caught his wife in the very act of adultery, and tinned her out of doors on the instant ; and vet for want of evidence could not bring an action or obtain a divorce against her. But, to look again at the provisions of this bill—what security was there that the woman, being allowed access to her child, would not run away with it? Arid if she did so, what was the court to do? Was it to send its tipstaff after her fur it? But, apart from this risk, be maintained that the influence of a mother over a child of tender years-, a mother, and in tears, all affection, all kindness, and fondling her child, in momentary outburst of parental feeling—might afford a contrast to the mind of the infant highly inejudicial to his uffection for his father, who had more anxi- ous and at times sterner duties to perform. All this would be the natural con- sequence of the circumstances under which the mother and child would come together, to say nothing of cases in which the wife would seize upon the mo- ment of access systematically to undermine the natural feelings of the child to- wards its father.
But his main objection to the bill was, that in reality it would re- vive the old question whether parties might divorce one another by mutual consent....
la There could be no doubt that if man and wife:could get rid of one another so easily, there would be no hick of occasions, no end of grievances to prompt them to it. It was the feeling of certainty that they were irrevocably bound to one another for life, that reconciled them to each other's little foibles ; and at last, by mutual coneessious, rendered home at least tolerable, if not altogether as happy us could be wished. Now, he knew of no one thing which tended MOTE to make a wife faithful to her husband, and cling to her home with all its little drawbacks from comfort, than the love implanted by nature in her bosom for her offspring, and the certain knowledge that if she once severed herself from that home, by reason of infidelity or other misconduct, she was severed also from her children. But when the wives of England came to know that, by this short.sighted and ill-judged enactment of their Lordships, they could live separated from husbands whom they disliked, and still have access to their children, whose endearments rendered even a comfortless home and a disagree- able husband endurable, where was the security for the fidelity of the wife and the inviolability of the marriage vow ? It was true that, by a proviso intro- duced into this bill since it was originally framed, a wile who teas divorced on 'merit of adultery would be excluded from the advantages of this measure; and this would certainly be to some extent a guard against this gross act of miscouduct on the part of the wife. But put the ease of a wife not agreeing eery well with her husband—disliking, him, infect, and having a lover in the background whom she loved with a pill), but as yet ungratified passion. What was it that now acted as a counterpoise for the united dislike for the husband and liking for the lover, restraining the wile from the actual vommission Of guilt, and tying her to him ; what did this, but that heaven-kepi:um:II feeling of alli•ction for her children? Give her this bill, however, and what would be the consequence? A separation would take glace; the wife weeld go from the ewe keeping of her hushand'a roof to a separate abode; the strung tie towards her children was not severed, the hallowed privilege and endearment of their society she might still enjoy ; and, withal, she was at greater liberty to enjoy the visits of her lover, and to tamper with the unhallowed dame whieir he inspired. Under these circumstances, how lung pai chase would their Lot dships give for her virtue? Not very long, he feared. Though restrained for a time by the dread of this proviso, which would exclude her from her chalet, if she yielded to her seducer, this Sread weeld daily i)VCA111e weaker, the teetotal ion stronger, and fall she would at lena Aunt upon this eileunistathua this i clot was to be abaci ved—living apart fro n her bushatid by consont, it was not at ail certain that the latter would obtain a verdict even in ease of .adultery. these
strong aware that he was finking urn nuptia a vil ses-, with these strong objections to the bill, Lord droagh en felt it Lis duty to move that it be read a second time that day six months. . .
Lord Chancellor COTTENIIAM, with some hesitatiun, supported the second reading.
Lord WYNFORD opposed it.
, The House divided—
Fur the secued reading ....
So the bill was lost. Majority So the bill was lost. Majority
MISC ELLAN LO US.
NeWVOUNDLAND. On Monday, the E art of Area ael a petition to the Lords from Ne wfoundland, " the west uneeppy and distracted colony belong,ieg to this %%Alloy."
The petitioners complained of a state of sweets., pro:loved principally by re- ligious auiniosity, in which it was scarcely peasilite for beakless to he carried
on ; and they pre! relief, De was at a loss to stlegest say remaly, but trusted that 51-1:111, ..1■10 :elftent ill their cowlition would siradity ;dace. Ile Legged to ask whether the colony of Ne.vieittullailil WAS tunny the juris- diction of Lord Durham, as he did nut kuow to what extent his Lordship's power went.
Lend GLENELG regretted that such unimosities should exist—
The remedy suggested by the petitioners was that of alter rti el in the con- stitutieu of the colony. These animosities had chiefly slime; lip from dif- fertucee on religious subjects, and they were the must difficult to allay of any ; and he thought all had beeu done that could be done to put ail end to them. With respect to Lord Durham, his commission gave lima the same power iu Newfoundland as in the other North American Colonies.
THE IIILL COOLY TRADE. Lord ELLENBOROUGH, on Tuesday, asked Lord Glenelg what measures of protection would be taken for the Hill Coolies ; as he found that the East India Lahuarers Bill had
been dropped in the House of Commons. ,1• .:T 31 Lord GLENELG said, that in consequence of the nutnerous amend. mots made in the bill by the Duke of Wellington and Lord Ellen- borough, it tees found impossible to pass the measure through the House of Commons. He was therefore obliged to abandon the bill and suspend the progress of the matter to which it referred. . eee3 A despatch had consequently been sent to India, poetively prehibizing the esaigration of those 'adieus, with a view to gain time to consider the whole of the subject, and to adopt sums more geueral inns Inure. At the same time, au Order in Council laid been franked, to tine affect that HO contract which had been mule in the ek.:Jdies with respect to those parsons for whose protection the bill was proposed should be valid.
Lord ELLENBOILOUGUI said, that though the despatch would be stall.. dent in the Crown Colonies, subsidiary measures would be required in the Chartered Colonies, to curry the intention of Government into effect.
Lord GLENELG said, that British Guiana, where the importation was greatest, was a Crown colony, and there the despatch would be sufficient.
Lord BROUGHAM said, he had a letter from a sailor on board of a vessel of small tonnage winch was cat rying -200 Indians to Guiana. If the Order in Council of the 1.2th of July bad been rescinded—
Lord GLENELG—" It is rescinded."
Lord BROUGHAM was glad to bear it ; but when he moved to rescind that order, he was only supported by a small minority.
I KINGDOM OF OUDE. Lord BROUGHAM wished to know whether certain orders altering the succession of the kingdom of Oude had gone from this country, or had been issued by the Governor-General?He understood that the present King of Oude had engaged to sign any treaty which the Governor General might dictate.
Lord GLENELG said the orders were entirely those of the Governor- Genteel. He had no objection to lay before the House all the papers that bad been laid on the table of the House of Commons.
TirE Irtistt TITHE BILL. was read a second time on Tuesday, with the understanding that the debate should take place on going into Committee. Lord BROUGHAM said he should give the bill the very best opposition in his power, not with the idea that it would be of re; avail, but to save his own consistency and prove his adherence tn`ls' _ own principles.
It MIS agreed to " commit " the bill on Friday.
IMPRISONMENT FOR DEBT BILL. Lord Chancellor CorrEsutex moved that the House should agree to the amendments of the Coro mons on this bill. The Duke of WEseiewrosr complained, that although Lord Melbourne had undertaken to give his best considers. non to in suggestion of the Duke, that certain officers belonging to the Cinque Ports should have compensation for injury they would sustain by the bill, yet nothing had been done on the matter by the Commons, 'Thinking that he had been ill-used, be would oppose the further pro. gross of the bill at that time.
Lord MELBOURNE was very sorry: was the Duke sure that no such amendmetes were in the bill ?
The Duke of WELLINGTON—"Yes, I rim."
The consideration of the bill was postponed till Monday next.
Lusa AleeisetteeY. A long discussion arose in the Lords on Thursday, on a motion by the Marquis of LONDoNDERRY, respecting
the state of the Irish Alugistrucy. The :Marquis disapproved of the removal of some and the appointment of other Alagistrates. Lord Pet:seri defended the conduct of the Irish Administration. Lord Wicet.ow, the Marquis of Dotes:soma:, and the Duke of IVELLING. TON supported Lord Londonderry. Lord :MELBOURNE said a few words in justification of Lord Plunket ; and the motion, which was only a formal one for papers, was agreed to.
Tut: Berns:it :Museum. On Tuesday, the Commons being in a Committee of supply, Mr. llawris complained of the conduct of the trustees of the British Museum, especially of the cost of the houses-5,00A each—for the principal officers, while the assistant keepers, to very deserving class of young men, were neglected. No improvement in the subdivision of apartments had been attempted.
Sir Roemer PEEL defended the trustees; but he agreed that some alterations might be usefully made—
Ile was of opinion that there should be a direct control by the trustees over the officers of the Museum, and his own impression was that it was better to have a superior Oliver exercise a superintendent control over a single depart- anent, than that it should be presided over by a number of officers, each having independent authority. This, however, was a subject still open fur discussion and decision. As to residence, he thought that the principal officers ought to reside; but it was very desirable that inen who could not afford it should not
have large menses allotted to them, in which they might find it too expensive to
live. lie was persuaded that no expense should be spated to make our public buildings bear a fevouralee comparison with those of other countries ; and he could a ore the House, on the part of the trustees, that they had every dile°. sitiun to promote the ioterests of the Museum, which were singly and collectively those of the public :old of science.
BENEFICES PLURALITY BILL. Lord JOHN RUSSELL moved the House to consider the Lords' amendments to this bill.
Mr. CHARLES bestirs:newt said, that to his illegal mind the amend- ments were wholly unintelligible—inexplicable. If Dr. Nicholl and the gentlemen opposite would undertake to make this very objection. able bill intelligible in the course of a week, he should be satisfied ; but in the mean while, he would move to consider the Lords' amendments that day six months. Lord JOHN RUSSELL said, diet the alteration of the Lords did not trench upon the main principles of the bill. Mr. WARBURTON, Mr. HAWES, and Mr. AGLCONBY %visited for time to consider the amendments ; and Mr. LUSHINGTON having with- drawn his motion, the further consideration of the bill was put off till .Monday.
NORTH AMERICAN BOUNDARY. In reply to a question from Cap- tain Bolen:no, respecting the boundary line between Maine and New Brunswick, Lord PALMERSTON said—
The Government of the United States having applied to the Government of Maine upon this point, the Legislature of Maine came to three resolutions: let, That they would not agree to a conventional line ; 2d, That they would not agree to another arbitration; and 3d, That they did think it desirable that a fresh attempt should be made by a local survey to ascertain the line of boun- dary. The two countries were now negotiating to see whether they could agree as to the mode in which a coinutission for that purpose should be composed, and how it should act.
The POST-OFFICE BILL Was read a third time, and passed.
THE SHANNON NAVIGATION BILL was withdrawn by Mr. SPRING RICE, who had no hope of carrying it at the late period of the session.
'f LIE SPIRIT LICENCES BILL, the object of which is to suspend the operation of a bill passed two years ago, by which spirit licences granted to grocers in Ireland were abolished, passed the second reading by a majority of 43 to LI THE BANKRUPTCY COURT BILL. On Monday, the Committee on this bill was put off for three months, without a division and without discussion.
INDIAN PENAL. CODE. On Thursday, in reply to a question from Sir Citaitees GnEv, Sir JOHN HOBHOUSE stated, that the Indian Penal Code had not been adopted, but had been circulated in thedd- ferent Presidencies, with a view to obtain the opinions of various functionaries thereon.
BANK OF IRELAND. MV. SPRING RICE, on Wednesday, obtained leave to bring in a bill to "postpone the repayment of certain sums advanced by the Bank of Ireland for the public service," for one year more,—namely, till the 1st January 1840.
DUTCHY OF CORNWALL. Mr. RICE, on Thursday, obtained leave to bring in a bill to enable the Queen to make leases and grants of land and heredituments in the Dutchy of Cornwall, and render an annual account thereof to Parliament.