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followed concession, and every indulgence had produced a new demand ;
" Increase of appetite had grown
By what it fed on.” Many of those concessions had been wise and just, and he had inaterially contributed to some of them; but he had always considered the concessions of 1793 as going beyond the line of prudence; and to the effect of those concessions he attributed the embarrassing anomaly in which Ireland is now placed, with reference to the other parts of the United Kingdom. The petition now under discuss sion demanded every thing that had been reserved in 1793; and, in short, a full participation of the official, judicial, and legislative powers of the empire. He could no: bring himself to accode to such a claim. He thought it right to resist the theoretical solecison of a protestant' king and papist councils, and to maintain the predominance of that mild and reformed religion, which by its principles is incorporated wiih the system and security of the British constitution. This opinion had been sanctioned by the wisdom of our ancestors in all the measures which immediately procedled and accompanied the Re, volution of 1688. The same doctrine had been recognized in the union with Scotland, and through the whole of the eighteenth century, and finally in the fifth article of the union with Ireland. It then it were clear (as he contended) that what is now asked is not a claim of right but matter of indulgence, the decision must rest on expediency; and he could not hesitate to say, that he was not prepared to break down the remaining barriers, under the protection of which we have risen to a state of prosperity, freedom, and pre-eminence, which distinguishes us among the nations of the world, and has made us wbat we are.
Nor did he ihink it necessary to argue how far the catholics, if they should attain what they now asked, might be disposed to look forwards to the attainment of an acknowledged church establishment, and to the withholding of all support to the exercise of the protestant reformed religion. Under these impressions, he was not disposed to go into a committee on the petition, because he remained in the persuasion that every thing had been done which could reasonably be asked or granted. Nor did he feel himself called upon to say whether, under any supposable circumstances, it might not become experlient to give what their lordships would now refuse. From the past conduct of parliament he had the fullest confidence in their wisdom, temper, firminess, and con-istency; and greatly would it have been to the credit of many of his countrymen, and of several corporations, if, in the last year, they had preserved the same dignified and concilia atory moderation, of which their parliament had set so eminent an example. But instead of trusting to those on whom it became them to rely, they had converted this great national question into a senseless electioneering cry and clamour; and had done every thing in their power to endanger the whole question, by giving to it a tem; orary and personal character, under a pretext of exaggerated loyalty and ill-founded alarm. With respect to te mover and supporters of the present question, he gave every credit for the full purity of their notives, he knew them to be as far removed as he could be from any indifference concerning what is called the establi liment in church and state; nothing had occurred to lessen his friendship for them, or to shake his attachment to them. But he happened to differ from them on a point in which it is impossible to have any complaisance or compromise, and in which the weight of authority cannot be placed against the weight of self-conviction. After a few words from the Earl of Suffolk,
Lord Grenville rose aud made a short reply. The pro. position relative to the future appointment of catholic bishops in Ireland was, to his knowledge, long in contemplation, although the catholies had not, until lately, thought proper to make it public. It was a proposition, indeed, known to his right honourable friend who was now no more Mr. Pitt), and was one of those guards and conditions with which he nieant to accompany the concessions to the catholics, which he proposed to grant to that body. With regard to the natnre of the proposition itself, he should rather think, that instead of presenting the names of three persors to the king, for his majesty ta choose one from among thein, as had been mentioned, it would be more eligible to present but one name, and if that were rejected, another, and so on in succession imtil his majesty's approbation should be obtained. He was free to say, that be disapproved of the limitation proposed.
As to the personal animadversions in which a noble secre-
For the inotion, including proxies 7+
Shaftesbury Oxford Spencer Fitzwilliam Fortescne Grosvenor Conynghain Glandare Moira Russlyn
Foley St. Vincent's
Yarborough Lord Cholmondeley's proxy was not given in, by mistake.
1st, Because we are fully satisfied that the removal of , the unmerited and degrading exclusion to which a most numerous and valuable part of the community have been so long subjected, and the imparting to the whole people of this United Kingdom all the privileges and dulies of the British constitution, would be a measure of unquestionable justice and wisdom.
2d, Because we conceive that this determination would in itself afford the best security for our civil and religious constitution, whilst the proposal of considering the sub. ject in a committee of the whole house, gave an opportunity of establishing, by the wisdom and authority of parliament, and with the cordial concurrence of all parties, such safeguards as must tranquillize the apprehensions of the most fearful, and allay the jealousies of the most sus. picious.
3d, Becanse, although the increased support and di. minished resistance which this proposal has now experienced in both houses of parliament, as well as the manner in which it has been discussed on the part of its opponents, encourage us to look with perfect confidence to its approaching and entire accomplishment, yet we are of opinion that by delay many of its happiest effects are cndangered ; and we are confident that there never was in the history of the world a moment in which a measure, in itself desirable, was more imperiously called for by circumstances of immediate and uncontroulable necessity.
The uniting, by mutual liberality, kindness, and confidence, the hands and hearts of all his majesty's subjects in defence of the invaluable blessings of security, liberty, VOL. III.--1808.
and national independance, is, at this perilous crisis, the first duty that we owe to ourselves and to our posterity; and it is the only mole by which we can reasonably hope, under the protection of Providence, to maintain these blessings amidst the misery and subjection of so many surrounding nations. Spencer
Norfolk, Earl Marsial Jersey
St. John Fortescue
Vassall Holland Suffolk and Becks
Grenville Nugent, Buckingham Cowper Bedford
Stafford, for the first and Donoughmore
second reasons Ponsonby
Spencer of WormlcighRosslyn
ton (Marquis of BlandRawdon (earl of Moira) ford)
for the first and second Oxford and Mortimer
Argyll, Dissentient, Because the fitness of yielding to, or resisting, in the whole, or in part, the prayer of the petition, so respecto fully submitted to the consideration of the house, depend. ed upon principles so momentous, and details so complicated, as, according to the ancient practice of parliament, should have been referred to the more deliberate consideration of a committee. And because the petition having proceeded spontaneously from the catholics of Ireland, supported by large bodies of their protestant brethren, and sanctioned by that liberal and indulgent policy regarding them which has so remarkably characterised his majesty's reign, it was most especially entitled to our favourable consideration.