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resolved never to set his foot aboard ship again, because he thought there was an end of all obedience and command. However, upon reflection, and when his first emotions had subsided, he hoped matters might be properly explained; but till that event took place, he informed the noble lord who presided at the Admiralty-board, that he never could sail with the gentleman alluded to. He believed the viceadmiral was no stranger from whence the anonymous attack came. He had himself been frequently the subject of newspaper abuse; but he had not appealed to the public, nor refused to serve his country when his services were demanded. He did not suspect ministers to be the authors or promoters of the abuse which appeared in the public prints; they on the contrary seemed his friends, caressed and smiled upon him; but if any of them were capable of cutting his throat, of vilifying and secretly aspersing him, he did not suppose they were near him; if they were, he was perfectly indifferent as to their smiles or their frowns, and regardless of every consequence which might follow from either, and was still ready to serve his country with the warmest zeal, and to the full extent of his abilities. Sir Hugh Palliser rose. He declared, he was so conscious of not having been any hindrance to a re-action with the Brest fleet on the 27th of July, that he was equally indifferent, with the hon. admiral, how soon an inquiry was set on foot; on the contrary, however it might be generally thought more advisable to urge one, for the sake of the public, it was his interest to wish for one, because he was certain it would then come out, that he had done his duty in every respect, both as an officer and a man. The hon. admiral seemed to speak with a kind of reserve, as if there was something behind; he heartily wished him to speak out, that knowing fully what was imputed to him, either on the score of neglect, inactivity, or want of judgment, he might have an opportunity of fairly answering the charge, and abiding by the judgment of the committee, whether he was or was not criminal. He had discovered, from what the admiral had just said, that the principal matter which weighed against him in the admiral’s mind was the publication in the newspaper; a publication which he had signed with his name, and by which he would abide. If it was imprudent, if it was wrong, the consequence was to himself. The hon, ad
miral had been kind enough to do him justice on the essential point of courage; he should be nevertheless exceedingly uneasy if he was thought deficient in other respects as an officer. It was on that very account that he had appealed to the public; he heard, when § came on shore, after the affair of the 27th of July, that it had been insinuated that he was a hindrance to a re-action with the French fleet: an unauthenticated insinuation of neglect of duty, was a severer stroke to an officer than any direct terms of accusation, because it was more difficult to remove entirely; he therefore, to clear his honour, which he felt attacked, waited on the commander in chief to have the matter set to rights, and to have the insinuation wiped away; he could get no redress. To say any thing against a friend, was, to a man of sensibility, the most disagreeable thing in nature; but where an officer's reputation was at stake, the removing an unjust stigma was certainly the first object; he had therefore appealed to the public, he had stated facts to them, and by those facts he would stand or fall. With regard to the report of not obeying signals, it was a false report; but even were it true, the public service could not have been affected by it, considering the circumstances of the day. Before he sat down, the viceadmiral repeated his assertion, that he was neither guilty of neglect of duty nor of inactivity, and in fact, that he was by no means instrumental in preventing a reaction with the fleet of M. d’Orvilliers; he repeated, that he held all low insinuations and affected tenderness in the utmost contempt. If there was any real ground of accusation, why not make it fairly and openly 2 If not, why insinuate that he had been wanting in point of conduct, though a testimony was given in favour of his courage. This he said was a language extremely different from that of the admiral's dispatch, containing an account of the action, in which he informed the Admiralty-board, of the spirited and gallant conduct of all the officers under his com
much of relating the private conversation, now passed, and move an address to the which had now been reported by the vice crown to order a trial of sir Hugh, but admiral to have passed between them at was called to order by lord Mulgrave, for his own house. He said, nothing of a deviating from the subject of debate. nature merely private was a matter of Lord North, in answer to the charge of public discussion. The vice admiral had embezzlement, declared, when he first defended his appeal to the public, on the heard of it, he did not know that it was. ground that his conduct had been grossly laid at the door of the Treasury board ; but misrepresented in the public prints: he that although those who embezzled the should nevertheless continue to think that public money ought to be severely punishsuch an appeal was extremely improper : ed at all times, he was exceedingly happy it contained many matters objectionable to hear of the embezzlement in question, in their nature, besides what immediately let who would be guilty, because 450,0001. related to his own justification, sufficient just at present would be very useful to to fix his former resolution never to go to the public; and as the gentleman had so sea again with the vice admiral of the unexpectedly found that such a sum was blue.. As to any insinuations or indirect embezzled, he doubted not it would be charges, he knew not whence they came ;j forthcoming; unfortunately, however, for for his part, he had made none; nor did the public, it now appeared that there was he know any part of the vice admiral's no embezzlement at all, as he would conconduct deserving of censure, but his see- / vince the committee. His lordship then ing the name of “ Hugh Palliser” signed went into a detail of the nature of the navy to a letter in the Morning Post. The estimates, and the public papers delivered vice admiral had quoted his dispatch from at the table from the respective boards of aboard the Victory, containing a full ap- the Treasury, Admiralty, and Navy, probation of the conduct of all the officers (under the titles of Distribution and Appro. present that day, in which he was included. priation Papers,) declaring that the 41. a Most certainly the conclusion was fair ; man voted for the navy, was applied to and he was again ready to repeat it, and four different heads of service, viz. seapoint that testimony particularly, as well men's wages, victualling, wear and tear, as generally. The vice admiral had al- and ordnance. That the sum voted was luded to signals, and said that it was no never equal to the expenditure, and that fault of his that the feet of France was as the hon. gentleman had truly said there not re-attacked. As to that, he could was a saving of upwards of 450,0001. in only say, that he presumed every inferior 1771, so that sum was applied to the di. officer was to obey the signals of his comminution of the navy debt, which of course mander; and now, when called upon to at the end of the year was 450,0001. less speak out, he would inform the House than it otherwise would have been. His and the public, that the signal for coming lordship added, that if he was to assert into the Victory's wake, was flying from that the first lord of the Admiralty and three in the afternoon till eight in the himself were above embezzling the money evening unobeyed; at the same time he voted for the navy service, possibly the did not charge the vice admiral with actual | hon. gentleman would not believe him ; disobedience. He doubted not, but if an it would therefore, he doubted not, please enquiry should be thought necessary, that him much better to hear that were they he would be able to justify himself, be- inclined to embezzle it, it was not in their cause he was fully persuaded of his per- power to touch a halfpenny of it. He sonal bravery. He repeated, that he was then explained, that it never came into his country's friend, and was ready to do their hands; that the Treasury board was every thing in his power to promote its obliged to pay every shilling voted by interest, and advance its honour; farther parliament for the service of the navy to than that, he had nothing to do with ad- the treasurer of the navy; that the treaministration, and was little solicitous about surer could not embezzle it, as he could any matter but what related to a due per- make no payment without a draft on him formance of his duty. He was happy to from the commissioners of the navy, and think that the British flag had suffered no that the treasurer's accounts were kept in disgrace, while intrusted to his care, and the most exact manner, and settled daily he hoped never would.
under the inspection of the commissioners, Mr. T. Luttrell rose, and was proceed- His lordship took notice of Mr. Luttrell's įng to make animadversions on what had disavowal of any intention of clogging the
wheels of government, and declared he honour. His lordship, in this line of de. had never charged the hon. gentleman bate, was known to be an original. Whenwith any such design: that he commended ever the noble lord found himself closely him for his spirit of inquiry, and so far, pressed in argument, or fact, it was his says he, am I from entertaining the most known practice to get rid of the question distant thoughts, of the hon. gentleman's by a joke. His manner was no less curious clogging the wheels of government, that I than his matter; when he was half asleep, am persuaded he no more clogs them or seemingly quite asleep, he collected a than the fly in the fable, who settling on store of wit and humour, from Æsop, the chariot wheel, thought she raised the Phædrus, or Joe Miller, or some other dust with which she was surrounded ; book equally distinguished for such species whereas, poor innocent thing, she fixed of drollery; and, instead of reasoning, was where she had a right to fix, and did not sure to treat the House with a laugh. As in the least incommode either the action to his simile of the fly on the chariot wheel, of the wheels, or the quiet of the person if he and his associates lived in another who rode within side.
country, and had their deserts, they would Mr. T. Luttrell said, the noble lord's long since have been put upon a proper humorous simile should not divert him wheel; such a wheel as the system and from fixing the attention of the House on principles of the noble lord's government, a business no less serious than important. among other blessings inseparable from He contended, that the noble lord had not despotism, tended to introduce into Great said a syllable which even tended to meet Britain ; he would therefore rather be the the charge of embezzlement. He had in- fly in the fable, than an object of igno. deed asserted at random, and taken his miny and detestation, upon the wheel of assertion as so much proof, that the allow- public vengeance. ance of 41. per man per month was insuf- After some further conversation, the ficient to answer wages, wear and tear, Resolution was agreed to. ordnance, or victualling. The excess of expenditure, he granted, formed part of Debate on Mr. Coke's Motion relative the navy debt; but what he still contended to the Manifesto published by the Commiswas, that no evidence had as yet reached sioners for restoring Peace with America.] that House, of the appropriation of the Dec. 4. Mr. T. W. Coke moved, That surplus, nor the necessity of it; if it had, the Manifesto and Proclamation from his it was in the power of ministers to instantly | Majesty's commissioners at New York, to give the satisfaction sought. Produce an the members of the Congress, the memaccount of the whole of the navy debt in bers of the general assemblies, and to curred in 1771; shew that a deduction of other persons, inhabitants of the colonies 450,0001. had been made out of it; that in America, contained in the printed book is, shew the nation that they have had presented to this House on Wednesday credit for that sum. If parliamentary ac- last, might be read. And the same being counts mean any thing, they mean a full read accordingly, he moved, “ That an account; any thing but a full account means humble Address be presented to his Manothing; for whatever is omitted, may, it jesty, to express to his Majesty the disis true, be applied to the service to which pleasure of this House, at a certain Mait is stated: but unless the specific ser- nifesto and Proclamation, dated the 3rd vices are laid before the House, it is, in of October 1778, and published in Amethe contemplation of the House, no ac- rica under the hands and seals of the earl count. The noble lord had endeavoured of Carlisle, sir Henry Clinton, and William to shift the charge off his own shoulders, Eden, esq., commissioners for restoring by affirming, that the money issued was peace to the colonies, and countersigned by requisition from the treasurer of the by. Adam Ferguson, esq. secretary to the navy; that the board, at which he pre- commission : the said Manifesto containing sided, acted only in a ministerial manner, a declaration of the following tenor: and had no immediate check to either exa- ! • If there be any persons who, divested mine or controul the requisition thus made. • of mistaken resentments, and uninThe treasurer of the navy at that time was Auenced by selfish interests, really think lately dead, and his lordship had probably that it is for the benefit of the colonies in view the well known adage, that “dead" to separate themselves from Great Bri. men tell no tales." With regard to the tain, and that, so separated, they will noble lord's apt simile, it had done him find a constitution more mild, more free,
• and better calculated for their prosperity, l jesty's innocent subjects, in all parts of
and which we are empowered and dis- liations.”
which seems to be sufficiently contra- pursued in America, by which the gene.
taining such a position must make in the could not think that the planners of such
war, when they tended to distress a peo-them; the northern coasts of England and
question is, how far Great Britain may, attacks, which, though we might provoke, . by every means in her power, destroy, we were not able to prevent: in the just
or render useless, a connection contrived dread of a degeneracy of spirit in the na. • for her ruin, and for the aggrandizement tion, and in support of the rights of hu. • of France. Under such circumstances manity, he could not but pronounce his
the laws of self-preservation must direct detestation of the principle by which the the conduct of Great Britain, and, if the article in the proclamation was dictated, • British colonies are to become an ac- which threatened the Americans with the s cession to France, will direct her to ren- horrors of a new system of hostilities, • der that accession of as little avail as pos- which every law, as well human as divine, sible to her enemy.'
equally reprobated; and to express this “ To acquaint his Majesty with the detestation more fully, as well as to vindisense of this House, that the said commis- cate his country, in the eyes of the world, sioners had no authority whatsoever, under from the character of barbarity it might the act of parliament, in virtue of which gain by following the threatened system, they were appointed by his Majesty, to he moved this Address. make the said declaration, or to make any | Mr. Conolly, though he despaired of declaration to the same or to the like pur- success from all the arguments that might port; nor can this House be easily brought be adduced in support of the motion, could to believe, that the said commissioners de not but rise to exonerate himself from the rived any such authority from his Majesty's blame that would hereafter attend the instructions:
measure which the motion was calculated .« Humbly to beseech his Majesty, that to condemn: he wished that posterity so much of the Manifesto as contains the might know that he had had no share in said declaration, be forthwith publicly dis- bringing on the calamities that this counavowed by his Majesty, as containing mat try had suffered by the American war, for ter inconsistent with the humanity and / which he had never given a vote; nor in generous courage which in all times have those to which it would be exposed by the distinguished the British nation, subver. | new system that was about to be laid sive of the maxims which have been esta down. If severity could be used towards blished among Christian and civilized com- the guilty among the rel els, it might be munities, derogatory to the dignity of the exercised with justice, and with his approcrown of this realm, tending to debase the bation; if the Congress, that assembly of spirit, and to subvert the discipline of his men who had set every right of nations Majesty's armies ; and to expose his Ma. and humanity at defiance, could be seized
and punished according to their deserts, i on our side, we had instances that might he would approve of the most rigorous pu- have tempted men who were not dead to nishments on such daring offenders: but passion and resentment. Who thrust out they, in all probability, would escape, and the eyes of wounded prisoners? The Amethe innocent become the only sufferers. ricans. Who burned New York? The In the consequences, too, of a new system | Americans. Who burned Norfolk ? A of barbarity, the innocent among ourselves part indeed was burnt by the King's would be the greatest sufferers : the un- | troops; but three-fourths of the town were fortunate kingdom of Ireland, to which he burnt by the Americans. What were the more immediately belonged, would be the cruelties exercised towards col. Campbell ? most exposed to ruin and devastation : 1 Thrust into a dungeon amidst the ordures that kingdom, which had had no hand in of a malefactor who had been sent out to the American war, and which was never execution, that gallant officer was bolted to reap any benefit from it, that unhappy and chained to the ground, without light, kingdom would be ravaged by the reta. without his servant to attend him, and alliation which this new system must necessa- most without food. This was treatment rily call forth; for it was perfectly defence- such as the annals of no civilized country less, and every where exposed to the de- could parallel. What was the behaviour scent of the enemy. No forts, no fleets to of the court that had tried col. Henley? protect it ; the capital itself, Dublin, had It was plain that the sentence of that court been open to invasion till the latter end of had been determined on before the trial summer, when two Newcastle cats, of 16 commenced; nor could all the eloquence guns each, had been stationed at the en- of gen. Burgoyne bring down punishment trance of the harbour. This was the pos on men, who had basely murdered some ture of a country which had no defence of our soldiers, their prisoners, in cold against an enemy, and which, though it blood. What would gentlemen call the has a parliament of its own, finds, in its : murder of lieut. Browne, and what did they poverty alone, a security against a similar think of the imprisonments of gen. Phil. treatment which America met with, when lips in consequence of his remonstrances the British parliament had attempted to on that murder? Were not these bar. tax her. That poverty, however, which barities of the deepest dye? Did they secured the Irish against the attacks of not call for dreadful and terrible retalia. the British parliament, would in the end tion? And yet no such retaliation had rob their country of its most useful hands; I been used. Why, then, should gentle. oppressed by their own governors, plun- men suspect that we were now going to dered by the common foes of the empire, open a scene of barbarity, when we had they would infallibly emigrate to America, no new cause, and after we had been proof where they could find an asylum from po- against the great temptations we had verty, wretchedness, and oppression. He hitherto so generously resisted ? He un. seconded the motion.
derstood the part of the proclamation Mr. Macdonald was amazed that gen. which gave such an alarm, to be nothing tlemen could so far torture words as to more than a warning to the rebels not to give them a meaning which had not oc- expect that lenity in future, which we had curred to him, when he read them, and shewn to them during the course of the which he dared to say had never occurred war, when we looked upon them as our to the commissioners who had written fellow subjects, and whom we wished to them. He looked upon the proclamation reclaim by the most singular mildness and to be a sober, sensible, well meant address indulgence. By their alliance with France, to the provinces of America; nor could the natural enemy of our country, they he infer from it that any new scene of bar- had forfeited all right to clemency; they barity and desolation was to be opened by were therefore in future to be treated do our armies : if wanton cruelty and deso- | longer as subjects of Great Britain, but as lation were the objects held out to the appendages to the French monarchy, rebels in the warning that was given to whose interests they had preferred to ours: , them by the commissioners, he would be parental fondness should no longer sway among the first to condemn those who the breasts of our rulers; war should as. could attempt to disgrace their country, sume a different form from that in which by threatening an enemy with barbarities it had been conducted from the beginning which nothing could justify: if cruelty on of the rebellion ; and the Americans might the part of the enemy could justify cruelty prepare to be treated, not, indeed, like