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with lofty rage,
" burst his cerements," stalk into the House, and annihilate the brazen monster with his proud contempt? I solemnly declare I will not speak to any member who sits on the same bench with him. If report be true, that Peel is countenancing the fellow for the sake of his vote against the Catholics, the Home Secretary's fair fame is gone for ever. But I don't believe it; Peel was bred in Harrow.
I am far from agreeing with Ashley, Lowther, and others, that Sir F. Burdett's speech was, all things considered, somewhat of a failure. The worst sentence in it is beyond the combined efforts of their lives. It was just what I expected from him, knowing him as I do, hearing on its very defects the impress of his lofty minded “ in-born worth, and of his refined, indolent, and contemplative intellect. In tone, it bore all the moderation of a man whose love of liberty is “ not of “ these days," deeper even than conviction of the injustice of oppression, and in whom the philanthropic fires of youth have been more chilled by the philosophic melancholy which a continued experience of the general worthlessness of the mob of mankind generates, than exhausted by age, or extinguished by disappointment. ment, it was rich even to prodigality ; in construction, the masterly rivulets of sentences betokened the inexhaustible fulness of the spring, while the irregularity of their flowings and endings, declared that their channels were not prepared before hand, and that their locality (so to speak) was accidental and effected without pre-arrangement. This is the evil consequence of the Hon. Baronet's indolent disposition, or rather, perhaps, of that procrastinative reflecting habit, which metaphysical studies, and a feeling of fulness and conscious ability, seldom fail to generate Sir F. Burdett is a first love of mine. Long before I became acquainted with him, when a boy, I made up my mind to the belief, that the best qualities of Coriolanus, Sir Philip Sydney, and William Hampden were united in his character. I believe, the only public man in whom my early predilections have been realized : I esteem him, the more I know him. Flis countenance, his manner, and his voice, are peculiarly expressive of his rare unison of the highest powers of intellect, with the most generous feelings of the heart. I trust his honorable efforts for the welfare of Ireland will be ultimately crowned with success, though I fear otherwise on the present occasion. It surprises me that George Dawson is such a bigot; for, politics apart, 1 don't know a better hearted fellow. His speech last night was delivered in such an ultra tone of party vituperation, that its effect was neutralized by its absurd virulence. Was up at Bellamy's when G. Bankes was on his legs---heard his speech as usual---presuming and superficial. Heard a dead set to be made at Canning to night.
7. So the Catholic question is lost ? Insurrection, and murder, and hanging, and general misery and discontent to be still the order of the day in Ireland, and all from the fallacies of words, and the bugbears of the nursery, and above either, because the Catholic Association, indeed, have not been complimenting their sworn enemies, and the Catholic priesthood have not forsooth been aiding their deadliest foes ! because, in fact, the Catholics have shown they are not the
degraded beings their oppressors would fain make them ! All aclmit the principle, but oppose its adoption as dangerous to the Protestant Constitution. I asked Peel, at his father's at Staffordshire, what he meant by “ Protestant Constitution ?" and he could not answer me, nor any one I ever put the question to, except, indeed, George Dawson, who honestly avows by Protestant Constitution, is meant Protestant Ascendancy---that is, Orange oppression. The question is not as to the absurdity of the Catholic tenets, for that is undeniable, or whether the Protestant or the Catholic religion is the best ; but the question for us Englishmen to determine is, which is the best way of governing the people of Ireland, a large majority of whom are, and will be Catholics ; whether by extending to them the blessings of the Constitution, without repairing, but actually strengthening it, they will be made better or worse subjects; whether their attachment to British interests will be diminished by good instead of ill treatment? Admiting the expediency of the laws against the Catholics of Elizabeth and the Stuarts, at the time of their government, the question is, are they applicable to the present time? Sir J. Copley and Mr. Peel, and a higher authority than either, Lord Liverpool, admit not.
The ques. tion then is, is there any thing in the religious veneration of the virgin, or the doctrine of the mass, so diabolically dangerous to the Constitution, that it would be unsafe to admit Mr. C. Butler to be along side of Mr. M. P. Battley, the Duke of Norfolk with Lord Winchelsea, or Lord Surrey with Mr. Sudbury Wilks ?---No, but then the “ Pope “ and Guy Fawkes, and the Gunpowder Plot,” and Jack the Giantkiller, and the premunire. What is the great argument, the insurmountable objection, the terrific danger, against which there cannot be provided an adequate security? That's the fee-faw-fum, which
frights the isle from her propriety;" there the “ conscientious con“ viction," the “overwhelming arguments," for keeping one-third of the population without the pale of a free Constitution. But there's a Providence in the falling of a sparrow: it cannot last long; and it will be a problem with our posterity, not easy to solve, why the senate of a'“ thinking people," the guardians of a boastedly “ free" Constitution, were in the nineteenth century influenced by such ab. surdities, and actuated by such narrow-minded intolerance*.
I dont think much of any speech delivered on the subject. The Master of the Rolls's, a plausible jury statement, from the brief of Dr. Philpotts—nothing senatorial, in either the matter or manner of it. Plunkett's, effective ; more, I think, from its direct appeal to common sense, and oratorical variety, than its sustained power. Peel's, an elegant piece of haberdashery. Brougham's, forcible, but declamatory; and Canning's, energetic, but more characterized by its soreness and intense sneering, than for its wit or burning eloquence. I never saw any man so much affected as he was by the result. Between it, Lord Liverpool's and his own illness, I fear for his convalescence. Nothing consoled me but Wilks's voting just after Ashley. “ Mr. John Wilks," “ Lord Ashley!!" Dont pity Ashley; wanted him to vote with me and Howie.
* We beg leave once for all to disclaim all participation in, or responsibility for, our M. P.'s opinions. THE INSPECTORS.
10. Read Sir H. Taylor's Last Days of the Duke of York with the most intense interest : a most interesting chapter in the history of human nature---the love of life balancing his heroic dreadless gaze at the approach of death---incredulousness alternating with desponding anxiety---the human catching at the straws of hope, prevailing to the last over the most perfect religious resignation---all colored by the singleness of heart, unchangeable amiableness of disposition, and deep sincere piety, of the illustrious deceased. Notwithstanding its tendency to, if possible, increase the general esteem for the trulylamented prince, I question if it do not supply his political opponents ---he had no personal enemies---with some formidable weapons of assault against the unartificialness of his fortitude :---there is too much unqualified anxiety to live---too much leaning on the mere ceremonies of the Church for support---in the narrative, for the character of an ideal Christian soldier. By the way, it struck me forcibly, the Lutheran---] was going to say Romish---veneration of his Royal Highness for the Sacramental Communion. I question if the shades of difference between his consubstantiative and the Catholic transubstantiative doctrine of the Sacrament. were as marked as a follower of Zuinglius might have wished. He would evidently have been a plastic material in the hands of an ambitious designing clergy; much more so than the present Heir-Presumptive. Talking of the Duke of Clarence, I cannot but condemn the continued petulant obstinacy of honorable members to the proposed addition to his income. Althorpe, Milton, and Tavistock have acted a manly part in protesting at first against the principle, and then ceasing to ungraciously oppose its subsequent progress. I told Althorpe and Milton so. I heard but one good argument against it last night---that of Davies Davenport and my friend Sir R. Meron---of which, by the way, not a syllable in the newspapers. It is---that when Lord H. Petty (the present Marquis of Lansdowne) was proposing, as Chancellor of the Exchequer, in 1806, an increase to the duke's settlement, he stated his sole object was not to increase it virtually, but nominally---that the proposed addition was merely a recompense for the then depreciated currency. That being the case, if the original settlement were sufficient, when the currency became improved, and raised in value, the noble lord should have proposed a nominal reduction; but as he had not the virtual as well as nominal increase of the duke's revenue had anticipated his Royal Highnesses claims as Heir Presumptive. I was not aware of this important fact, otherwise might have voted with Althorpe. So the Duke has become an advocate for emancipation. Stourtoun told me so months since, but I doubted his reasons. His Royal Highness views it as I do---uot as the positive, but as the negative, condition of Ireland's peace and prosperity---that is, that it is comparatively nothing one way or the other, taken by itself ; but is the essential preliminary step to the introduction of more important and more salutary measures. He means to grant it as a royal bcon--in the event of his succession to the throne. I trust his wise policy will have been anticipated in the meantime.
12. We“ landed interest” are going it gallantly in the House VOL. II.
---carrying every thing we wish---not hearing any body we dont like
13. The murder is out: Copley's an oration for the Chancellor's medal; Canning's life, 13 to 1t worse than Peels, therefore 19 chances to lt in favor of Peel's cabinet prepotency. Canning will ---must be---after all the intriguing, the Premier. Nobody else fit for it. Serve under Peel---a 74 strike to a merchantman---then is doomsday near!
15. I repeat again and again, that the Corn Laws cannot be with safety touched till the currency is decided. I trust the writer of the dialogue between Adam Smith and Ricardo, will state the question fully; would recommend him to be more elementary in his arguments, rather abstrusish-- had to read him three times over before I thoroughly understood him. 'Tis astonishing the general ignorance on the subject. Not five men in the House understand a principle of it. There is Huskisson, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Tierney, Sir H. Parnell, and I, and perhaps two or three more. What words, words about “ over issue," and “ depreciated currency. "
Paper issues displace their own value (I mean current) of coin; and there cannot be an over issue as long as the currency is not lowered in value; and it cannot be lowered in value as long as paper displaces coin, that is, as long as there is a gold sovereign in the country. There is the argument in a nut shell: let the dialoguist give the rationale.
17. Shade of Charles James Fox rest in peace. I never overrated your abilities; but still feel indignant.“ I rise, sir, to repel “the insinuations against the conduct of my dearly lamented Right “ Hon. Friend, &c. &c." C. J. Fox defended by Mr. John Calcraft! an eagle defended by a tom-tit; a lion by a little niangy cur; 0 tempora, O mores, O modesty, O matchless impudence !
20. I have not been able to stir from the cursed election committee : I am actually fagged to death, and all to get in that note of interrogation, Mr. Fysche Palmer.
22. The Chancellor indignant at Plunkett's attack upon that “ most audacious forgery,” the Pitt Club, and
the “ Reformation “ Crusade." Great schism behind the scenes---now or never, friend Canning. By the way, were I to become the “ Peter the Herniit” of the religious crusade against Popery, I would circulate at least equally with the Bible, Don Quixote, the niost profound satire upon the Catholic religion that ever came from the pen of man. Miss Dulcinea del Toboso was the immaculate peerless virgin, to doubt whose perfections and charms was death. Charles ř. was the Knight of La Mancha, devoting his labors and vigils, his wars and treaties, to the chimerical idea of making all minds, like watches, bear their indexes by a simultaneous movement to one point. The windmills and giants were the different sects of Christianity; and my old friend Sancho was the symbol of the people, possessing sound sense in all other matters, but ready to follow the most extravagant visionary in this, and combining implicit belief in it with the grossest sensuality. For“ religion, “ when it is hot enough to produce enthusiasm, burns up and kills
every seed entrusted to its bosom." To say that Don Quixote was an attack upon knight errantry, is absurd in the extreme ; for knight errantry was then dead for more than a century. Cervantes delighted his romance readers by his caricature of the false taste of his rivals and predecessors; and his own heart by his solitary archery, well knowing 'what amusement those who came after him would have in picking up his arrows, and discovering the bull's eye hits.