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embargo on the exportation of corn was the necessity of holding out encourageproposed. It was the only expedient left ment, by setting examples of national geto prevent the people from starving, and nerosity, mentioned the Congress, who, he if it was a mistaken measure, it was a mis- said, gave daily proofs of this species of take on the humane side. As to what policy. After giving them great credit subsequently passed in parliament on the for the wisdom of their proceedings, which, subject, he could not precisely say; but he said, was inferior to none, that ever as well as he could recollect, the deceased appeared ; observed, that rewarding those earl did not defend the legality of the pro- who deserved well, was the surest means clamation, but merely the necessity. of being well served. It was a maxim as
His lordship then entered into several old as time itself; and he was astonished strictures on the conduct and sentiments how any noble lord should so far forget it of the noble duke who opposed the Bill :/ as to oppose the present Bill, however insignificant his grace deemed The Duke of Chandos complained of himself, he was a person of singular weight being very uncandidly treated in the course in that House: his voice went a great way, of the debate. He said, he had been acand was heard by some persons with par- cused of voting for a sum of money to pay ticular attention. He felt it frequently, the King's debts, in this and the last ses. and more than once was a witness to his sions ; he certainly had so voted, and were moving the previous question in matters the question again in agitation, he would of great difficulty to 'ministers. He re- again give his vote for the addition which menubered, upon a very particular occa- had been made to the civil list, because he sion, upon the determination of a matter knew the receipt was not equal to the exof property, the noble duke's leaving his penditure: The noble duke, and the noble learned friend (lord Carden) in a mi- earl who spoke last had asked, whether he nority, by which means he was sorry to would go into an enquiry relative to the find that the House had now for three perquisites of placemen; he knew not years, on most occasions, lost the assist that the King's servants now had larger ance of the learned lord's abilities, in the emoluments than those who held the same decision of learned questions. He was offices before thèm; until that was proved pointedly severe in this part of his speech to be the case, he certainly would not on the conduct of the noble duke, and the enter upon any such business ; and as to unhappy interference of great court lords the superfluous sinecures, the noble duke on such occasions, who never failed to vote and the noble earl knew much better than with a majority at their heels; because it he did what such sinecures were, as they would discourage suitors from appealing had been in place; and if they knew that to the judicature of that House, in the the country was unnecessarily burthened, last resort, He would have been much they were criminal in not endeavouring to better pleased to see the noble duke exert lighten the public load. The noble ear] his great personal influence, in removing had attacked him in a very personal and the causes of the present distressed state severe manner, on account of his attending of our finances ; in enquiries into the ex- law appeals. He had ever considered it penditure of public money, than in op- as much his duty, as a peer of England, posing the only particular instance he re- to attend legal decisions as political de collected, in which a pension or annuity bates ; but he felt himself shocked to death had been properly bestowed. Why did that the noble earl should charge him, in not the noble duke, when the addition to the face of the public, with having renthe civil list was granted, move for such an dered the property of individuals less seenquiry? would the noble duke move for cure than it otherwise would have been. rescinding that vote, and enter into the He had never given a vate respecting law enquiry, and on finding what were the real or politics, which had not accorded with exigencies of the crown, and what would his conscience. He could not help ex. be fairly adequate to supporting it with pressing his surprize, that any person splendour and dignity, confine the addi. should quote the conduct of the congress tion to that, and that only? would he of America as an example for the British move for enquiry into the profits of places parliament. Were there no instances of and sinecures? If he would, he should an opposite nature which could be found most readily assist every one of his endea- in Europe ? If there were not, the argu. vours ; he would immediately second the ment wanted its main support—that of motion. His lordship, after reverting to precedent. Having repeated his objec. tions to the Bill, the duke declared he had of his services; but independent of those spoken merely as his conscience dictated; talents and services, he looked upon him that he was as independent as any one to be liable to infirmities in common with member of either House, and had no other the rest of his species. With regard to bias than his loyalty, and his personal at the low state of the public finances, he little tachment to his sovereign, and his firm expected to have heard any thing urged persuasion, that the King's servants were on that head by the supporters of adminismen of sound judgment and unimpeached tration. Besides, the objection might be integrity.
done away with the greatest facility, and The Earl of Shelburne declared he had without furnishing a single pretence for never accused the noble duke of want of complaint. Let the 4,0001. a year to be ability to determine on law points, he had granted by the present Bill, be taken out only talked of bis weight and influence of the wardenship of the Cinque Ports, a with their lordships in opposition to the sinecure of 5,0001. per annum, formerly duke's own declaration of his in:ignifi- worth no more than 1,5001. a year, but cancy. The noble duke bad censured him swelled to that enormous sum to oblige for citing the Congress: much as he ad- the old duke of Dorset, and continued so mired the conduct of that assembly, on ever since. Or if the minister's merit for most occasions, he protested he then cited losing America was such that he ought the example no otherwise than as the not have a less sinecure place than this, example of an enemy; but if the noble let the proposed annuity be deducted from duke wanted instances of the spirit of na- the enormous perquisites of the auditor of tional reward, and national® gratitude, the exchequer, a sinecure of 20,000l. per nearer home, there was not a part of Eur annum, for doing nothing, or next to norope which did not afford many. Let the thing, for signing his name barely about six noble duke cast bis eye upon France ; the times a year. great system of which government turned The Earl of Shelburne agreed with the upon national rewards. They had not yet noble duke that this was no time for men done paying honours to marshal Richelieu: who had any regard for their characters or and it was but the last year, that a monu- peace of mind, to trust themselves into ment had been finished to the memory of difficult situations ; as besides the natural marshal Saxe. In a word, there did not difficulties to be encountered or surexist a wise nation on the face of the globe mounted, many were to be feared, and that did not see the justice and the policy few or none to be trusted. With regard of such conduct.
to the late earl's having been duped or The Duke of Richmond replied to the deceived, the charge was true; but he last noble lord; he said, that the deceased begged the noble duke to consider, that earl was possessed of great virtues and the earl had made the best atonement, abilities ; but he was not infallible. He a full and frank confession of his having was in office for several years, had received been so duped and deceived; his lordgreat emoluments; and, if he quitted office ship added, that few meu, if any, were so -poor, it was a proof of a blameable inat- truly careful and so successfully cautious tention to his private concerns; or a very as not to have been once duped in their imprudent extravagance. The noble earl life time. He would, for the noble duke, said, he might have come into office when- as well as for himself, express an earnest ever he pleased. It might be so; but his wish, that neither of them might hereafter refusal might be easily accounted for ; he have occasion to confess, that they had might fear that his own terms, though been duped and deceived into office; and seemingly granted, might afterwards be that when they should be no more, there departed from, broken, or explained away. might be as good ground for praise, and as The deceased earl confessed in his place, little scope for censure, as there was in the in that House, that he had been once be- case of the late earl of Chatham. fore duped; perhaps the deceased earl The question was put, and the House dreaded, although he might seem to have divided : Contents 42; Non Contents 11. the prescribing his own terms, that he should again run the risk of being duped Protest against passing the Chatham and deceived. He looked upon the Annuity Bill.] The following Protest was deceased earl to be a man of great abili- entered : ties; and that his family were intitled to - Dissentient a provision from the public, on account
“ 1. Because we cannot agree to such an unwarrantable lavishing away of the that he ought to balance the necessity of public money, at a time when the nation the motion against the inconveniency of groans under a heavy load of debts, and is sitting a few days longer: that even in engaged in a dangerous andexpensive war. point of good policy, as well as humanity,
“ 2. Because we fear that this Act may ministers should consider what material in after times be made use of as a prece service so brave and well disciplined a dent for factious purposes, and to the en- corps of veterans might, if released, be riching of private families at the public able to render their country at this imexpence.-/ Signed)—Bathurst, Chandos, portant crisis. Ab. York, Paget."
The Earl of Effingham supported the
motion, on the ground last mentioned by Debate on the Earl of Derby's Motion the noble earl. He agreed with the noble for an Address relative to the Convention viscount that there was no compelling the of Saratoga.] The Earl of Derby then Congress to perform the convention on resumed the business relative to the con- their part, as we had proved by fatal exvention at Saratoga. He acknowledged perience, that we were not able to comit was now too late in the session to go pel them to do any thing: nevertheless, into the question at large, nevertheless it was necessary that parliament should he thought it extremely proper, that mi- be informed what was the matter of difnisters should acquaint the House and the ference, when it arose, and how best it nation with the difficulties which obstruct might be remedied. Parliament were ed the faithful performance of the conven- called upon to interfere, since ministers tion ; because both a regard for the gal- had declined any steps on their part; lant men now prisoners in America, as they owed it to the nation, as an act of well as public faith, made it necessary. duty, and they particularly owed it to the That, as ministers had declined to do any brave but unfortunate men who were sufthing in it, parliament should be acquaint-fering the most mortifying and painful ed with the nature and extent of the im- chagrin, by being rendered unserviceable pediments, in order that it might be ena- to the state, and left neglected in the bled to point out the speediest and most hands of an enemy, who for several reaeffectual means of removing them. His sons could not be supposed to have any lordship moved, “ That an humble Ad- other feeling of regard for them but what dress be presented to his Majesty, that he the mere rules of war prescribed. would be graciously pleased to order to The Duke of Richmond remarked, it be laid before that House, previous to was somewhat extraordinary, that the notheir prorogation, all Information that ble viscount had paid so little attention to has been received, relating to the Deten- an affair of so great consequence, as not tion of the Army now in America, subject to be able to recollect any part of the to the conditions of the Convention signed contents of the papers, which, if he perat Saratoga.”
formed his duty, he must have perused, Viscount Weymouth said, there was no nor of course give the least tittle of itblame imputed to any person respecting formation to their lordships on the subthat affair; the only objection he had to ject. Such a conduct merited censure. the motion was, because it appeared ex- The noble viscount perused the papers, or tremely ill timed, just at the eve of a pro- he did not. If he did, and withheld inrogation. As to the papers, if moved for formation from the House, it was an act in time, he would not have had the least of great disrespect; if he had not perused objection to comply with the motion ; nor them, which he could hardly think, his could he give a specific answer, upon bare lordship was guilty of a very inexcusable recollection, as to their contents. On the piece of neglect. As to the prorogation, whole, therefore, considering that he could he hoped ministers would consider how neither carry the substance of them in his dangerous it might be to prorogue parliamind, and that were they produced, they ment at so critical a season, when it was would break-in upon the prorogation to not only possible, but probable, their admorrow, he would recommend to his lord. vice might be wanting, which could not be ship to withdraw his motion; otherwise he obtained until the end of forty days after should find himself obliged to move the issuing the proclamation for calling it toprevious question, which he rather wished gether. to avoid.
The previous question being put, was The Earl of Derby told his lordship, agreed to without a division.
Debate on the Duke of Bolton's Motion that their lordships would not suffer it to for an Address to defer the Prorogation ring in vain. No instance, he contended, of Parliament.] The Duke of Bolton was known, when an embargo was laid, rose and observed, that although the noble such as that of Saturday last, but on the viscount's reasons against the preceding dreaded approach of an immediate invamotion carried the appearance of an ob sion; and besides the general reasons for jection to one he intended to submit to the propriety of such an apprehension, he their lordships' consideration, it should had no doubt, but the King's servants had not prevent him from proceeding; be good private and particular reasons to fear cause, give the objection its full weight, it that an invasion was at hand. If so, he amounted only to an argument of conveni- submitted how extremely necessary it ence, and could never stand in competi- would be to have parliament sitting, in tion with the welfare and safety of the case of so, momentous an event. Supstate. The noble viscount spoke of a posing parliament should be dispersed, at clause in an act of parliament, which em- the time a foreign enemy should land, who powered his Majesty to summon the par could the people look to for assistance liament in 14 days. He would not con- and protection ? Not surely to a set of tend about the real powers vested in the men, who in every instance in which they crown by that Act; but at a period of so had been trusted, had misled both parliamuch danger and difficulty, he was ready ment and nation, and betrayed a total into prove that it would be extremely im capacity, in every measure they attempted proper to trust to any summons, however to carry into execution. short, when the assistance of parliament,
As he had mentioned the naval prepara. upon any emergency, be it ever so sud- tions going forward in the ports of France den, could be insured by continuing the and Spain, he thought it necessary to say a session by short adjournments.
few words on that part of his subject; as His grace affirmed, that an invasion of well to point out what had been done this country by France was meditating ; by those powers as to remind their that the formidable armaments going on lordships what had been omitted on at that instant in their ports, docks, and our part. As soon as France had finally naval arsenals, portended nothing less; determined to interfere in the dispute that Spain was equally busy in warlike between this country and her colonies, preparation; and, that powerful armies which was several months before she and encampments were stationed on the entered into any direct treaty with them, coasts of the channel, opposite England. she wisely turned her whole attention to These were unequivocal proofs of what we her marine; and he was warranted in afhad reason to expect, at least what it was firming, put it in such a condition, as the necessary we should provide against ; they present ministers were totally ignorant of, were not appearances of a defensive, but and very few people aware of. Yet, even an offensive war. Indeed, ministers them- active as France and Spain were, if our selves, by their conduct, within a few navy had been properly attended to; if days, had amply confirmed what he had the enormous sums voted by parliament now thrown out; the alarum-bell was rung had been judiciously applied ; if the noble by them ; its sound had already reached earl who presides at the Admiralty, had the most distant part of the three king- performed either his promises or his duty, doms; it was still tinkling in his ears. A no cause of the present national panic, on general embargo had been laid by the account of an expected invasion, would joint advice of those very ministers, who, have ever existed." The most ample supby the language of the noble viscount, plies, in the course of seven years, had seemed determined to proceed in the same been granted; the most loud and frequent ruinous career, which had produced all boastings had been made by the noble earl our former misfortunes, and present cala- in consequence of those supplies; of the mities; and by a prorogation of parlia- Aourishing invincible state of our navy; ment, to despise its assistance or advice. of its superiority over the united fleets of
His grace exhorted their lordships to France and Spain ; but the very first inpay this alarum-bell a due attention, as stant an occasion calls for the exertion of they might depend upon it, from the uni- this fictitious naval force, not even for of. form conduct of ministers, they would never fensive war, but mere protection, for safety have sounded it, if not urged by motives and security in our dwellings and possesof dire necessity. He hoped, therefore, sions, for the enjoyments of our altars and firesides, we are given to understand, that then, Spain should become a party in the the navy is no longer the great national quarrel, what has this country to depend bulwark'; that we must have recourse to a on? Nothing but mere chance remains to land force to defend us: and as for Gi- protect her. We are, my lords, brought braltar and our distant dependencies, they into this melancholy predicament by the are at once abandoned ; even the noble misconduct of ministers : if we do not delord now stationed in America with his tach, our dependencies are at the mercy squadron, is devoted; for the same noble of our enemies ; if we should, our coasts earl, who has boasted so frequently of his must lie open to the attacks of the first inhaving a force superior, or able at all times vader. His grace then moved, " That an
with the united force of the whole humble Address be presented to his MaHouse of Bourbon, has adopted a very jesty, humbly to represent to his Majesty different language; he has acknowledged, the very alarming state of these kingdoms, that it was not prudent to detach, in order which we fear will be much increased by to watch the motions of D'Estaing, whe- a prorogation of parliament at so critical ther meant to be directed against our for- a time, whereby his Majesty would be detresses in the Mediterranean, or our fleets prived of that natural and constitutional in America. His grace next pointed in advice he might find necessary on any particular to the want of frigates, which emergency to require from his parliament, he said were the great soul of maritime when the whole legislative authority, and war , both in cruises against the enemy, the united wisdom of the kingdom, is, in for the protection of commerce, and in our apprehension, absolutely necessary to facilitating the operations of large squa- secure us from impending dangers, most drons. He contrasted the distribution of humbly to implore his Majesty, that he our fleet at present, with what it was in the would be graciously pleased to defer the years 1743, 5, 6; at which several pe- prorogation, of the parliament until the riods, invasions from France were threaten present very dangerous crisis may be haped in favour of the Pretender. The at- pily terminated." tempt in 1743, was when the Pretender Viscount Weymouth opposed the moand marshal Saxe were at-Dunkirk. He tion. He was of opinion, that the said, then the wisest precautions were two motions stood pretty nearly on the taken ; the shores were lined with frigates, same ground; and in giving his reain order to give notice of the enemy's ap; sons of dissent to the present, should reproach ; and were so judiciously stationed cur chiefly to his former arguments ; across the channel, that it was impossible which were, that parliament, after so for any fleet to come up the channel, long and arduous an attendance, required without sir John Norris being apprised of a recess; and if the necessity for the adit; who, stationed in the Downs to watch vice of parliament were such as had been the intended debarkation at Dunkirk, had stated by the noble duke, the clause init in his power to prevent it; or upon the serted in the Militia Bill, of 1775, proappearance of the grand French Heet, to vided a remedy, without putting parliaattack it, before it could join the force in ment to the disagreeable inconvenience of Dunkirk road. Such was the distribution attending in town during the whole sumof the force in 1745 and 6, when admiral mer ; not to transact business ; not to ful. Vernon commanded in the channel, which fil a duty required of them; but merely compelled the enemy to a choice of for- to wait in anxious suspence, to see if any bearing to invade, or of coming to a gene- matter of parliamentary concern might ral engagement. What, said his grace, is arise. The purport of the clause was your line of battle now? You have none. what he had before mentioned, which emYour line of battle ships, at the end of al. powers his Majesty, in the instances theremost two months, are not yet ready to put in provided for, to convene the parliament to sea; and if they were, have you any in 14 days. This clause would answer all frigates? Even on paper, the grand fleet, the intended purposes of an adjournment ; as it is called, under admiral Keppel, and would be free from all the inconamounts to no more than 21 ships of the veniencies which an adjournment, must be line, besides the squadron of 12 more productive of. He took notice, that a under admiral Byron. Is this a force noble duke in the last debate had observ. equal to that which France alone is able at ed, that the writs of summons to parliathis instant to meet you in the ocean or ment, running in the ancient form, and rechannel with? I contend it is not. If, quiring forty days between the writ and