9 FEBRUARY 1867, Page 1


Tr HE Queen opened Parliament in person on Tuesday. The Royal robes were laid on the Throne, and the Speech was read by the Lord Chancellor ; but the Queen wore a coronet over her widow's cap, and the ceremonial was a little more stately than on the last occasion. Her Majesty trusts that the German war may lead to a durable peace in Europe ; announces that a mode has been suggested to the Government of the United States " by which questions pending between the two countries arising out of the Civil Wax may receive an amicable solution ;" alludes to the war between Spain and Chili; observes that in Crete, England, France, and Russia are directing their "joint efforts" to bring about improved relations between the Porte and its Christian sub- jects; approves the elevation of Prince Charles of Hohenzollern to the " government " of the Principalities ; promises a Bill to con- federate British North America, apparently without the Islands ; laments the Orissa famine ; promises to abandon exceptional legis- lation for Ireland ; exults in the cessation of .cholera and cattle plague ; and promises the foundation of an efficient Army of Reserve. Among home affairs Reform occupies the first place, Her Majesty saying:—" Your attention will again be called to the state of the representation of the people in Parliament, and I trust that your deliberations, conducted in a spirit of moderation am mutual forbearance, may lead to the adoption of measures wheal, without unduly disturbing the balance of political power, sh:' freely extend the elective franchise." The remainder of the th promises a commission on Trades' Unions, an extension of the itactory Act, improvements in the Mercantile Marine, a Bill to provide for the insolvency of railways, a measure for the redis- tribution of some of the London poor rates, a change in the Bankruptcy law, the consolidation of the Admiralty, Probate, and Divorce Courts, some more judges, and an Irish tenant-right Bill. The interest of the Houses was concentrated, of course, on the passage relating to Reform, and the rest of the Speech excited little attention.