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nothing satisfactory. The interests of Ireland were neglected by the ministry; no system of amelioration, no plan of improvement was suggested. She seemed to be deserted, and no redress offered itself, but what sprung from the people themselves. But was it wise, was it politic, to force the people upon the amending of their own wrongs? Mr. Grattan moved an amendment, which depicted in vivid colours the distressed state of the country, and maintained that the only resource left to support their expiring trade was to open a free export trade, and to let his majesty's subjects enjoy their 'natural birthright. Not only the leading patriots on this occasion, but even several of the immediate ser. vants of the crown, were for the amendment. Mr. Hussey Burgh, who was then prime serjeant, acting with a view to ministerial finesse, and in order to deprive Mr. Grattan of the honour of carrying his amendment, moved, in lieu of itz one exactly similar in spirit, and which was unanimously assented to * This was, that " it is not by temporary expedients, but by a free trade alone, that this nation is now to be saved from impending ruin,"
* Mr. Hardy, who seems to have had a minute knowledge of all the various springs that regulated the political measures of the last thirty years, gives the following history of this famous and operative resolution :
“ To counteract Mr. Grattan's amendment the ministerial speakers introduced much general expression as to the trade of Ireland, but the opposition could not be so deceived. It was resolved, that a positive unequivccal requisition to be reo stored to our commercial rights should be preferred by the house of communs. Mr. Grattan's amendment was prefaced by a preamble, stating the necessity and justice of our claims. Mr. Burgh, at that time prime serjeant, approved of the amendment, but condemned the preamble, and suggested one short simple proposition. Mr. Flood whispered him across the benches, “State a free trade merely.' Burgh instantly adopted the words, and moved, that nothing but a free trade could save the country from ruin. Mr. Grattan at first objected to the withdrawing the preamble, as he not only considered it a necessary adjunct to any motion that could be made on the subject, but was afraid, by dividing the proposition, to make room for some adroit and successful parliamentary maneuvre which would get rid of the whole. However, when dir. Conpolly, the brother-in-law of the lord - lieutenant, and who, from that connexion, as well as his rauk and situation, might, in the fluctuating state of the huuse, have commanded a majority, not only expressed himself strongly in favour of a free trade, but against the preamble, Mr. Grattan withdrew it, stating, at the same time, that he did so in the full and entire expectation that the resolution as to a free trade should be unequivocally supported. Mr. Burgh's amendment was then puty and carried unanimously.”
This address was carried by the speaker to the viceroy amid the thundering acclamations of the populace, between two lines of Dublin volunteers, commanded by the Duke of Leinster, in arms and uniforms, which extended the whole way from the parliament-house to the castle. So perfectly correct as well as spirited had the conduct of the volunteer army been throughout the kingdom, that the house of commons, almost as soon as it met, voted their unanimous thanks to them. In the upper house a simj.
lar vote passed with only one 'dissentient voice, and that was Lord Chancellor Lifford's who honestly stated as a reason, that “
c he could never join in a vote of thanks, as a peer of parliamenť or a lawyer, to'any set of men, be their motives ever so laudable or patriotic, who were acting in a military capacity against law.". . is
One consequence of this determined aspect of the Irish parliament was, that in the English house of peers Lord
d "Shelburne moved, that his majesty might be addressed 10 take into recon. sideration the two motions for procuring 'relief to Ireland, which in the preceding session had been rejected by large majorities, and that his majesty would be pleased to direct effectual, redress to his suffering people; but though supported by the Earl of Hillsborough; 1 Earl Gower, Lord Camden, and several other noblemen of weight
'and importance, the question was negatived by a majority of 82 against 37. The same subject, was debated with more warmth in the commons, but with the same 'result. Lord Upper Ossory moved, by way of resolution, the substance of what had been moved by Lord Shelburne in the peers. All parties agreed that Ireland was in a state of ex. treme distress, all concurred in opinion that her distiesses should be relieved ;' but while all were agreed, nothing was done. The physicians con sulled about remedies while the patient was dying for, want of them. It was: during the debate upon the motion of Lord Upper Ossory's that Mr.
Fox delivered the following sentiments respecting the volunteer associations of Freland.
" They had been called illegal,” said he, “but whether legal or illegal, he declared he entirely approved of them. He approved of that manly determination which, in the dernier resort, flies to arms, in order to obtain deliverance. When the last particle of good faith in men is exhausted, they will seek in themselves the means of redress; they will recur to'first principles, to the spirit as well as 'letter of the constitutioni; and they can never fail in such resources, though the law may literally condemn such a departure from its general and unqualified r‘ules. Truth, justice, and public virtue, accompanied with prudence and judgment, will ever bear up good men in a good cause, that of private protection. God know that he sincerely lamented the cause which produced this sad, he could not but say, this perplexing and humiliating alternative. He most heartily lamented that any cause had been administered which seemed to justify violence or resistance; he dreaded the consequences, however justifiable in their origin, or moderately or judiciously conducted; but, whatever the effects inight be, he was ready to acknowledge that such a power was inherent in men; as men and citizens it was a sacred trust in their bands, as a defence against the possible òr actual abuse of power, political treachery, and the arts and intrigues of government: and
when all other means fajled, resistance, he should ever hold, was perfectly justifiable."
It may be briefly observed upon the doctrine contained in this extract, that it is one more cal. çulated to produce injury than benefit. When any body of men, acting together for the attainment of one common purpose, are told from high authority, that armed resistance-in other words, rebellion--is justifiable if all other means have failed, it is not difficult to conceive they will dispense with the if, assume the proposition as proved, and act upon the assumption of a general principle directly subversive of all government, and hostile to the foundations of civil society. A more moderate, a more practicable, and a safer system to inculcate would be to refer the alternative of seizing arms only to extreme cases, clearly and definitely proved. The warmest admirers of Mr. Fox, however, must admit, that his notions of liberty and freedom partook somewhat too largely of republicanism, which seemed in him, to be grafted upon the pure stock of whiggism. His conduct during the French revolution proved this.- Toreturn, however, to Ireland and her concerns.
So determined were the Irish commons on the redress of commercial grievances that they spiritedly resolved to vote the bills of supply for the first time for only six months; and they were transmitted to England, where, however mortify