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viously been allowed to dispose of absolutely possessed of. If it were for money. At first it was proposed proposed, for instance, to make an to allow the puisne judges 6,000l. alteration in the leases of that see, a-year : but the scheme ultimately and to give the present possessor a adopted gave to the chief justice smaller sum in lieu of the loss he of the King's-bench 10,0001. a-year; might sustain, how mueh would it to the chief justice of the court of exeite the disapprobation of that Common Pleas 8,0001. ; to the sacred profession? If an alteration chief baron of the court of Ex were intended, there should at chequer 7,000l. ; and to each of the least be a fair average of the loss puisne justices of the courts of sustained by it, and compensation King's-bench and Common Pleas, to that amount. But, what was and to each of the barons of the now proposed ? To increase the Exchequer, the nett annual salary salaries of the puisne judges from of 5,500l. There was likewise 4, to 5,5001. a-year ; and while on granted an addition of 2001. a-year the average of the last thirty or to the retiring pension of the chief forty years, the salary and fees of justice of the King's-bench ; 3,5001. the chief justice amounted to bewas fixed as the retiring allowance tween 14,000 and 15,000l. a-year, of the puisne judges; and 3,7501. to add only 1,000l. to the lowest as that of the chief justice of the sum he had received during any Common Pleas, the chief baron, one of these years. This might be vice-chancellor, and master of the an advantage to the present chief Rolls.
justice, because it would give him This arrangement met with a small increase to his present considerable opposition in its pro- salary, he not being in a situation gress. Mr. Hume was of opinion, to participate in all the advantages that the cheapest way of doing the derived from the disposal of the judicial business of the country incidental offices ; but he was sure was the best : and Mr. Hobhouse that he was incapable of bartering and Mr. Denman, imbued with a any of the rights of his successors. spirit of deep philosophy, maintain. It was unjust towards the chief ed, that the dignity of a judge justice to take away from him his depended in no degree on money. fees, in order to create a fund for Mr. Scarlett contended that this the payment of the puisne judges. arrangement was improper, because It was an admitted principle, that it in fact diminished the emolu- the chief justiceship of the court of ments of the office of lord chief King's-bench ought to be a place justice of England. The fees at- of great elevation and dignity. tached to that office were, he said, Such was the feeling of the proincidental to the situation of chief fession. To make it such, it should justice, and had existed for cen- be a situation of considerable turies. It was from these that he emolument. The profession of the derived the greater portion of his law was like a lottery. Its exrecompense, and of the legitimate penses always exceeded its profits reward of his labours. Chief justices just as the expenses of the tickets had as much a vested right in these exceeded the value of the prizes. fees, as any archbishop of Canter- To make these situations the object búry could have in the lands of the of high spirit and ambition, they see which he had not yet become should be offices of emolument and
dignity. Any step to degrade the income of the office had exceeded high offices of chancellor or chief that sum in times past. This justice, was a step towards the amendment was not adopted. degradation of the whole profes Mr. Brougham proposed to lop sion. Men of very considerable 'off 5001. a-year from the proposed eminence would not be induced to salary of the puisne judges : but give up a leading practice at the that alteration also was rejected. bar, for a salary barely equal, per A very important bili, introhaps inferior, to the profits of their duced by Mr. Peel, for consolidating practice. The style of living must and amending the laws relating to also be taken into the account. The juries, was passed. Of the alteraprofession lived very much together, tions made by it in the existing and were rigorous critics towards laws, the most important were the each other, as to the rate and style regulations with respect to special of expense. A man of good prac- jurors. It was required, that in tice might live in his own way, all cases where the Crown was and make a very good figure with either a real or a nominal plaintiff, half his earnings. Not so with the the special jạrors should be selected chief justice, who was looked up by ballot : and in all criminal proto not only as head of the common ceedings tried by special juries, the law, but as one possessed of same regulations were to be obdignities and advantages becoming served. In civil cases, where there his high station. · A man could was a consent in writing on both accumulate less for his family as sides (which written consent was chief justice with 10,000l. a-year, to be afterwards received as evithan a barrister could with the dence of the agreement between same sum acquired by practice. He the parties), special juries might be was free to do as he liked in the selected in the same manner as at latter case; in the former, he would present. be chained to hard labour for life; The bankrupt laws were consolihe would be condemned to tug at dated into one act, and were in an iron oar,'or, if that were con some respects altered. An act was sidered too harsh a description, at also passed for amending the laws a gilded one. There was a period relating to agents and factors. when chancellors and judges held On the very first night of the their levees, and maintained their session, the lord chancellor anstation with the highest splendor. nounced his intention to introduce Lord Mansfield invariably held a bill for regulating and restrainlevees; but, if a lord chief justice ing the prevailing practice of dealcould be found to ride down to ing in shares of proposed Jointcourt, or to travel, in a hackney- stock Companies. This bill, he coach, with his train-bearer then, stated on a subsequent occasion, indeed, some saving might be would not apply to companies made out of 10,000l. a-year. Upon already constituted, or which might these grounds he proposed as an be constituted by charter or act of amendment-That the sum of parliament. But it was not to be 12,000l. should be inserted, instead endured that before the authority of 10,000l., as the salary of the lord of the Crown or of parliament was chief justice: for he was well given to the formation of a jointinformed that the average of the stock company, persons should be
permitted to sell at an enormous eight per cent. But was there any profit the shares of that company. landed proprietor so ignorant, as The object of his measure there- not to see, that, if the monied man fore was, to prevent the trans could lend to the trader, at a ferring of shares of any joint-stock higher rate than five per cent, he company, until such company would not lend to him at that should have received the sanction sum ? It was one advantage to the of a charter or an act of parliament. lender, that he could recall his His lordship, however, afterwards capital at pleasure, or get it back abandoned this design. At a later at a short notice. Now, when a period of the session, the attorney man lent capital to a trader, he general introduced a bill for the was generally enabled to command repeal of the bubble act: all agreed the use of it when he pleased. Very that the penalties annexed to the often he received as security transoffence created by that statute, ferrable property, which he could were preposterously severe ; and turn into money when he pleased. the repeal of it was therefore But, if he lent his money on land, readily acceded to.
he could not get it back at his The Unitarian marriage bill was pleasure ; there was all the trouble again rejected. It was supported, and inconvenience of a mortgage ; in the House of Lords, by the he could not recall it for two or archbishop of Canterbury, the three years, and therefore, in probishop of Litchfield, and lord Liver- portion as he could not command pool. It was opposed by the lord the use of his capital, when he lent Chancellor and lord Redesdale: it to the landed owner, he would and on the question of the second make him pay a higher rate of reading, it was lost by a majority interest for it than the trader. He of 56 to 52.
believed he was not wrong when Mr. Serjeant Onslow again he stated, that eight out of every brought forward his bill for the ten estates in the kingdom were repeal of the Usury Laws. On the loaded with debt. Now, under 17th of February he moved, that it what circumstances did the country should be read a second time. Mr. gentleman borrow money? Was Calcraft and the Solicitor-general it to employ it at some seasonable opposed it. Borrowers, argued crisis, when by a little prudence the latter gentleman, might be and dexterity he might obtain divided into three classes-mer- vast profit? No. The benefits cantile borrowers, landed borrow. which he could receive as its ers, and persons who did not produce were fixed. He never belong to either of these classes, could obtain from a borrowed and who might be considered as sum beyond a determined profit. general borrowers. Mercantile Such were the great distinctions borrowers generally obtained a between these two species of loan to make a profit of it. They borrowers. Could any one say, did not borrow from necessity, but that the repeal of the Usury laws they borrowed to trade; and if would be beneficial to the latter they could make ten or twelve per class ? But, if the terms of borrowcent on the money borrowed, there ing were so unfavourable to the was no reason why the lender might landed class, what expectation not ask them to pay him seven or could the general borrower enter
tain of being able to obtain a loan In the course of the diseussion, under any other than oppressive Mr. C. Wynn stated, that not terms? The persons, who formed only was he himself friendly to this class, generally stood in need the abolition of the Usury laws, but of but small sums; their necessi- the chancellor of the Exchequer, ties were pressing, and therefore and the president of the Board of they were exposed to the most Trade, had, on more than one occagrinding demands. However, they sion, defended the policy of doing would have no choice; they would $o; and he was confident that all be obliged to submit to the terms his colleagues, with the exception, imposed upon them, let them be perhaps, of the right hon. secretary ever so oppressive.
for Foreign Affairs, who, to the best In answer to these observations, of his knowledge, had never taken Mr. Serjeant Onslow argued, that the question into his consideration, money was like land or houses, were strongly in favour of it. They which, when men borrowed, they had left the House, because they paid for the use of. As the rent anticipated that the both of houses and land was un the bill would not take place till restricted, he did not see why a late hour, and that their prethe rent of money for there was sence would not be wanted to render nothing magical in the term interest the question successful. He had should not be equally so. It stayed behind at the request of his could not be denied that the best right hon. friend, the president of and readiest security, which could the Board of Trade, to declare the be offered for money at the present opinion of ministers on this bill, in day, was land. The fact was, that case such a declaration of opinion money could be at all times ob- should be rendered necessary. tained on good security, at its fair Notwithstanding this important market value. To reduce it to declaration, the bill was rejected that value, or to prevent its being by a majority of 45 to 40. carried higher than that value Besides some essential improveallowed, the present measure was ments in the constitution of juries introduced. The land-owner and in Scotland, the form and course the merchant would always obtain of proceeding in the court of it at its fair price; but as to the session underwent a great alteraperson who had no security to tion in the present year. The act give, he did not know any change introducing these alterations was of the law which could put him the result of the labours of the into a better situation with respect committee, which had made its reto the terms on which he could port 1824: and the effect of them obtain a loan, than he was at was, to diminish greatly the succes present. He contended, that, on sion of steps which intervened the ground of good policy, there between the commencement and was no just cause for continuing the termination of a suit. the present restrietive laws.
C H A P, V.
Combination Laws-Mr. Huskisson's Motion for a Committee- Report
of the Committee-Bill founded upon the Report--Debates on the Bill-Corn Laws-Alterations in our Colonial Policy-Diminution in our protecting Duties---Measures for the Relief of the Shipping Interest-Surrender of the Charter of the Levant Company.
SHE mischievous effects arising ing, in some districts, to so alarm
ing both the statute and common was not speedily interrupted, they law against combinations among would very soon become, rather a workmen, had been too serious to subject for Mr. Peel to deal with be overlooked ; and on the 29th of in the exercise of his official funca March, Mr. Huskisson called the tions, than for him (Mr. H.) attention of the legislature to the to call the attention of the House subject. Mr. Huskisson, after al- to as a matter of trade. These luding to the hurried and incon- things could not remain much siderate manner in which that longer in their present condialteration in the law had been tion. Unless parliament should made, stated, that, since the passing interfere to place them on a differof the aet in question, he had in his ent footing, his right hon. friend official capacity received inform- armed as he was by the state, with ation of the conduct adopted by the authority of calling in aid bodies of workmen in various parts the civil power for the protection of the country. These were, many of the property and liberty of the of them, very painful accounts; king's subjects, must so interpose and to the Secretary of State for against what he could not but conthe Home Department numerous gider a very formidable conspiracy reports had been forwarded, detnil- in certain bodies of men, calculated ing most atrocious acts of outrage to place that liberty and property, and violence, on the part of work- and perhaps life itself, in great men combined against employers. jeopardy, as regarded certain indiAll those classes of workmen who viduals who employed large numhad misconceived the real object bers of labourers and journeymen. of the legislature in the late act, As a general principle, he adhad manifested a disposition to mitted that every man had an incombine against the masters, and herent right to carry his own laa tendency to proceedings destruc- bour to whatever market he liked ; tive of the property and business and so to make the best of it: and, of the latter, which, if permitted accordingly, he had always mainto remain unchecked, must termi- tained that labour was the poor nate in producing the greatest mis- man's capital. But, then, on the chiefs to the country. Indeed, other hand, he must as strenuously those mischiefs were rapidly grow- contend for the perfect freedom of