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reat and powerful empire. Let us be guided by the principles of lenity and justice, that the blessings of peace and union may be restored, and permanently remain, to the whole empire. Mr. Alderman Bull. Sir, the motion of the noble marquis is, in the present situation of our affairs, of so much importance, that I cannot satisfy myself without giving my public testimony in favour of it. The distracted state of this empire demands the most earnest attention of each individual of the representatives of the people. Divided and distressed as we are at home, convulsed and distracted as they are in our once valuable colonies, uncertain as are the events of war, it behoves us to turn our thoughts to conciliation and peace; to restore, if possible, and to establish on a basis that may be immovable, that good understanding which once so happily subsisted betwixt us and our brethren on the other side of the Atlantic. To enter into the question of taxation without representation, after it has been so frequently and fully debated, would be a waste of time; I will therefore only declare, that, in my opinion, property taken without the consent of the owner, or his representative, is robbery; it is what our constitution never warranted; and any body of men who tamely submit to such an alienation of their birth-right, are utterly unworthy of the exalted name of freemen. This Amendment has peace for its object, and is founded upon the generous principle of equality. Can there be any reason urged why our brethren in America should not enjoy as fully all the privileges of the constitution, as our brethren in Ireland 2 Can there be any reason urged, why our brethren in Ireland should not enjoy all the privileges to which Englishmen are entitled 2 I am confident there cannot.— Sir, it is the boast, it is the glory, it is the perfection of our constitution, that ever subject of it is equally interested in its privileges. To preserve this equality, our heroic forefathers suffered and bled; they counted not their lives dear, but exposed them to dangers and to death, in defence of their right of giving and granting their own money. A noble lord, once a valuable member of this House, declared within these walls, that he rejoiced that America had resisted. I, Sir, rejoice that the spirit of our forefathers, is seen to animate their descendants on the other side of the globe; and if ever such a claim should be exercised in our sister kingdom of Ireland, as
that we are now unjustly and cruelly exercising in America, I hope that a spirit of genuine liberty and resistance will arise, sufficient to overwhelm it. Hitherto, Sir, we have been fascinated with the unmeaning parade of the uncontroulable authority of the parent state, and the supremacy of parliament. We have been shedding the blood of many brave men, and wasting the money of the people, for a mere phantom; and have, at length, been hurried on, by our mad ideas of superiority and invincibility, to the very brink of destruction. The predictions long since declared in this House, have in part already been accomplished; injustice has its reward : of: pointment and disgrace its portion. In this horrid contest, we have gained nothing but unhappy experience; experience, however, by which wise men would profit. What has it opened to us? Scenes of returning commerce and felicity ? No:—on the contrary, nothing but scenes of general distraction and misery. Let us, therefore, seize the present favourable opportunity. Let us bury in eternal oblivion our past animosities; and. by an offer of peace and of liberty, reconcile those whose friendship is our interest, but whose enmity, in the end, will certainly be our ruin. Sir I’hilip Jennings Clerk. I shall heartily concur in the first part of the proposed Address, which is to convey our dutiful congratulations to the King, on the safe delivery of the Queen, and the birth of another princess; but having constantly opposed the American war, from the commencement, as thinking it might and ought to have been avoided ; it will not be wondered at, that I should now refuse to give my assent to those other parts of this Address, which are to convey as'surances to the throne, of our intentions to furnish means of prolonging and continuing the war. I do most heartily adopt the Amendment made by the noble lord: it is of a conciliating nature, tending to put an end to this unfortunate quarrel, which has brought this country to the eve of its ruin, and which, if persevered in, must end in its destruction. A motion of a nature similar to this, was made by a noble earl in another House, in the earl part of these troubles. That noble . the greatest minister and the ablest statesman this country ever boasted, wishing to save this country a second time from impending ruin, stepped forth in its distress, and produced a plan of a Bill, which would at once have prevented all the ca
lamities which since that time have be- remembered it to be the business of the fallen us. He forewarned you at that time minister to give a comment on the King's of all the distresses and dangers which speech. And in answer to a charge of have since happened. Unhappily for this another hon. gentleman, it was the first he country, little credit was given to his pre- heard of general Burgoyne, like Samuel, dictions; his plan of accommodation was putting man, woman, and ass, to the rejected, not because it was disapproved, sword, as had thus been wantonly imputed but there is too much reason to think that to him. That the Indian savages in the a jealousy of that great man's abilities King's service were headed by proper of. deprived us of the benefit of his proffered ficers, who had it in charge to prevent the services. His plan, so dissimilar to that inhumanities complained of; that, lest it of gentlemen in administration, could not be deemed improper to have secured the be accepted without depriving them of Indians, it was necessary to inform the their places. A reason which, I fear, will House, that the Americans had made protract this war, as long as any honest overtures to gain them to their service, man has a guinea left in his pocket, or a and therefore it was thought prudent to man, woman or child left alive in Ame- engage them, as an effectual means, aniong rica, if we continue to furnish ministers many others, of suppressing the rebellion. with means to destroy them. · A great With respect to the odious aspersion price indeed for their services ! Had that thrown on the character of that military noble earl's plan been accepted, we should senator, now in his country's service, he be considered as their friends, not their trusted he should see him take his seat murderers; and should now probably be again in that House, when, he had no in quiet possession of our colonies. The doubt, he would be able to defend himself people of that country would be now fully against any man, who would rise up looking up to us for protection. Then, ) and accuse him. As to the unhappy war by a revival of trade and their assistance, itself, he wished as heartily as any member we should be in a situation not to cringe for the happy moment to arrive, when to any foreign power, but to demand, if something might be chalked out to effect necessary, that justice by the sword, the wished-for accommodation ; but that which we are now obliged to implore by happy moment must be the moment of memorials and petitions.
victory. He confessed they were in the Mr. Serjeant Adair said he was asto- dark with respect to the late operations, nished that on the first day of the session, having received no intelligence from sir when parliament, particularly under such W. Howe since a day or two after his critical circumstances as the present, landing at the head of the Elk river: he should expect every information that mi- said, it would be absurd to order a cessanistry were able to furnish, in order to tion of arms on the part of the King's justify the House in pledging itself to sup- troops, as such a step would naturally im. ply government, not one man in adminis-ply that their original claim would be ad. tration had deigned to stand up to give mitted; but said, the commanding officers parliament the smallest ray of light on the had a power of granting a cessation whenpresent state of affairs. It was unknown ever they deemed it expedient. With rehow we stood with respect to France and spect to foreign powers, he assured the Spain ; and it was strongly suspected that | House, that from every thing he had been Portugal had acceded to the Bourbon able to collect, he could not find it was compact. These were circumstances that the interest, nor did he believe it was the should have some influence on our mea. | intention of France or Spain to go to war sures, and whatever knowledge govern with us; but as they thought proper to ment had of those matters, ought of course keep on foot great armaments in their seto be laid before the House; and the veral ports, he deemed it prudent to put withholding such information, was a suffi- this country in an equal state of defence, cient reason for the House to postpone to guard against the possibility of an atthe Address till they should be better in- tack; that the language of the court of structed.
France was by no means that of war; Lord North said, he thought it necessary whenever it had been deemed unintelligi. to clear up the point started by the learned ble, strong remonstrances had been made, serjeant respecting the information he and redress had been received; that they hinted at; for, that in the course of twenty had published the strongest declarations, years attendance in that House, he never forbidding any countenance being shewn
the Americans; and, in consequence of this conduct of the French ministry, no depredations had been committed on our Coast. Mr. Burke expressed great concern that the matters urged by so many respectable members as spoke before him should be treated so lightly, and took an opportunity of complimenting the several honourable persons already mentioned, and ridiculed the haughtiness of the minister. If it were possible, we would give a detail of a speech, which in the course of almost two hours, commanded the attention, excited the laughter, and sometimes drew tears from the sympathizing few ; but we must omit all those changes of ridicule which were rung by his ingenuity upon the defence which lord North made in answer to the charge against general Burgoyne's proclamation; also pass over his proofs of the futility of our conquests in the colonies, and touch only on that pathetic supplication which he made to the House, to seize the present happy moment to attempt an accommodation, when neither elated with insolent victory, nor debased with abject defeat, we could with honour to ourselves make such proposals to our colonists, as they could, without dishonour, accept. He apostrophised with a degree of enthusiasm upon the noble spirit of men, who, if they had not been rebels, he could have been lavish in praising; of women who, reduced by the ruin of civil discord, to the most horrible situation of distress and poverty, had constancy, generosity, and public spirit, to strip the blankets, in a freezing season, from themselves and their infants, to send them to the camp, and preserve that army which they had sent out to fight for their liberty. And shall Britons, said he, overlook such virtue 2 and will they o in oppressing it Shall we give them no alternative but unconditional submission ? A three years war has not terrified them, distressed as they are, from their great purpose. Let us try the power of lenity over those generous bosons. o Mr. For asserted, that the idea of conquering America was absurd; and that such an event was, in the nature of things, absolutely impossible. He proved his assertion from the situation of the country, the disposition of the people, and the dis. tance from Great Britain. He said, that though the resources of this empire were such as to enable us to carry on the war for several campaigns more, there was a
fundamental error in the proceedings, which would for ever prevent our generals from acting with success: that no man of common sense would have placed the two armies in such a position as from their distance made it utterly impossible that one should receive any assistance from the other. That the war carried on by general Burgoyne, was a war of posts: that the taking of one did not subdue the country, but that it would be necessary to conquer it inch by inch: that his army was not equal to the task—the numerous skirmishes with the enemy, and the natural difficulties of the country, would so retard his motions, that the campaign must be ended before the object of it was fulfilled; and that if he was happy enough to join sir W. Howe, it must be with nothing more than the shattered remains of an army mouldered away, which might have been of some service to the cause, if by the blunders of the ministry they had not been sent where it was impossible they could act, unless under the greatest disadvantages; such as must be obvious to a man of the meanest abilities, and which would escape no one but the inauspicious minister for American affairs. He was severe on lord George Germain : he declared that ever since the day that nobleman forced himself into administration, our affairs began remarkably to decline. That it was the measures which he dictated to the ministry, that drove the Americans to a declaration of independence; and that as he was the cause of the continuance of the war, so he should not only be removed from the management of our officers, but be made to know, that a minister is accountable to the nation for the orders he gives, and the measures he advises. He expressed the greatest horror at arming the Indians, and letting them loose, not only against the troops of America, but also against the defenceless women and children, whose bodies even death could not rescue from the insults and barbarity of the savages. He said, he wondered how a prince famed for his humanity, benevolence, and sanctity of manners, as the present King was, could abet or suffer such miscreants to remain in his camp, when it was well known that brutality, murder, and destruction, were ever inseparable from Indian warriors. He took a cursory review of the operations of the several campaigns; shewed how little we had gained, and of course how little we might expect to gain: and
expressed his hearty wishes that we were now in as good a state, as when the noble lord found us, in 1775. He asserted that France was the directress of our motions; that we went no farther than she thought proper to permit us; and that the fate of the American contest depended on her councils; that if she declared war, the immediate consequence must be an evacuation of America; our troops and ships must be called home to defend ourselves, and America of course become free. He reprobated all the proceedings and asked for what purpose hostilities were commenced? If it was to maintain the Navigation Act, why were so many French bottoms employed in the river ? If it was to raise a revenue, he observed, that the ministry took a very serious step to effect their purpose, by plunging the nation into a new debt of fifteen millions. If they intended to secure the commerce of America by arms, they had most happily hit upon a plan, that not only deprived us of the benefit of it, but had thrown it all into the hands of our enemies. He said, if terms were offered to the Americans before it was too late, they might perhaps accept them: that at least it would be doing no more than justice required at our hands; that it would detach many of them from the Congress, and by dividing them, faci
litate a conquest; that he could not wish
to see them reduced to unconditional submission; which it was not more unjust to require, than impossible to force them to. He concluded by giving his hearty consent to the Amendment. Lord George Germain informed the hon. gentleman who spoke last, that he had never deemed himself of so much consequence as he did at that moment; when he was told by the hon. gentleman, that the Americans declared their indendence, because he came into office. The hon. gentleman was possessed of vast abilities, which he employed to render his measures not only contemptible, but criminal in the eyes of the House; that it was natural for him to feel himself hurt by the charges of the hon. gentleman, and that he hoped the House would indulge him with a little attention, while he endeavoured to wipe away the blot which the hon. gentleman had seemed anxious to fix upon his administration. He then begged leave to inform the gentleman, that before he came into office, he was asked by the noble lord near him (lord North) if he would support those sentiments in office he LVOL. XIX.]
had before delivered in parliament; upon which he had desired to see their plan of operations, and finding them agreeable to his ideas, he declared he would, and would have no objection to serve his sovereign in place, with the same alacrity he did when out, as long as the system laid down was not inconsistent with the spirit of the constitution. For the truth of what he advanced he appealed to the noble lord. For his part, he said, he could not see the shadow of a reason which could justify the assertion of the hon. gentleman, that affairs had grown worse since the management of them was committed to his hands. When his Majesty had honoured him with the post of secretary of state, the King's troops were besieged in Boston, Nova Scotia was in danger, and the Floridas threatened with an invasion by the Carolinians: in a word, even hope, at the time, seemed in some degree presumption; yet, to the honour of administration, and our commanders in America, he was happy to say, that the gloomy prospect had disappeared, and given place to the most promising scene of success. No official information, indeed, had been received from sir W. Howe ; but from the private advices that had been brought to hand, there was every reason to conjecture that general Washington has received a check, and that general Howe was, most probably, now pursuing his blow and improving his advantage; and to this, he said, it was natural to attribute his silence. With regard to the Canada expedition, the hon. gentleman was under a mistake when he imagined that general Burgoyne had orders to fight his way to New York, there to join sir W. Howe ; that his orders to the former were to clear the country of rebels as far as Albany, which town was prescribed to him as the boundary of his expedition, unless circumstances might make it necessary to co-operate with general Howe, in which case he was to assist him to the utmost of his power. The operations of the campaigns, since he became a minister, had been wisely planned, and executed with no less spirit than judgment; and such were the measures pursued, that had it not been for the unforeseen misfortune at Trentom, there was every reason to believe that the last campaign would have been decisive. The treaty with the Indians was grossly misrepresented, and sorry he was to say, that there had not been candour enough on the other side of the House, to acknow
ledge that government was driven to that I gress, by the great bounties offered for measure by necessity. The Americans, soldiers, shewed they were hard set to reit is well known, tampered with the In-cruit their forces; the hardships the peodians, and strained every nerve to induce ple actually suffered under their despotic them to take an active part against the tyrants, compared with the mild govern. King's friends ; and the idea of treating ment they had withdrawn themselves from, for a neutrality, was never started, till the and under which they had become so effort to make them take up the 'war powerful, had nearly brought them to a hatchet had proved abortive. We at worst sense of their error, and made them sick but copied 'the righteous and infallible of rebellion. They boasted of liberty; Congress, but with more success. When but surely no one in his senses would say, general Burgoyne treated with the savages, that the shadow of liberty was to be found he insisted that if they joined his forces, among men, where the smallest complaint they should absolutely conform to his laws against the established government was of subordination ; and the Sachems, to punished with imprisonment and confisca. whose commands the Indians are known tion of goods; where if a gentleman should to pay the most implicit obedience, gave say half as much against their usurped the general the most positive assurances power, as had been said that night against that their men would observe the strictest the rulers of the nation, his life would be discipline. When a measure does not made to answer for his boldness. As the answer the expectation of the planner, Amendment, if carried, would tend to after he has taken every possible precau keep up the spirit of independence, which tion to ensure success, it must surely be had for some time past hurried away their unreasonable to blame men, merely for reason, he should think himself an enemy not being able to command events. to his country, if he should do otherwise
His lordship observed that the hon. than stamp it with his negative, gentleman had paid him a compliment, for Colonel Barré shewed the necessity of which he was not bound to thank him, as sending out full powers to the commishe was thoroughly convinced it was not sioners, of presenting the olive branch to intended as such. It was plain the hon. the Americans before they became utterly gentleman was no enemy to the Ameri- irreconcileable to Great Britain : he comcans, and his being so very strenuous for plained that his letters were opened by removing him from the direction of affairs the orders of the ministers, and that no seemed to indicate, that success would be officer from America dared to speak to more likely to attend the arms of the him, as he was looked upon as a proscribed rebels, if he ceased to have the direction person. of affairs. The hon. gentleman had en- | Mr. Temple Luttrell said, he had not deavoured to create a jealousy in the an idea that any member who conscien. breast of the premier, but he was too well tiously.fulfilled his duty to the public, assured of his noble colleague's good could vote for the Address. That so unsense, to be under any apprehensions on becoming a courtesy to the crown, should that head: as he came into office without never get the ascendant in his mind, over desiring it, so he was ready to retire that impulse of loyalty and true regard to from it without regret, the moment that the King, which prompted him to fore. House should disapprove of his measures. warn his sovereign of those imminent danHis circumstances, he thanked Heaven, gers which threatened both his realms, were such as not to force him to submit to and his person, in case the present bloody any disgraceful terms, and to render the measures of his ministers should at this. emoluments of a minister unnecessary to conjuncture be pursued with so unrelenthis subsistence. He knew he was respon- ing a perseverance as the Speech from the sible for his orders, and flattered himself throne seemed to threaten. He lamented he had never delivered any, which would that every session since he held a seat in dishonour him. He did not want the that House, had been opened with a speech Americans to lay down their arms and from the throne, which merited, in his submit unconditionally to the law of the humble opinion, very severe reprehensions conqueror; they might treat by indivi. from the delegates of a free people ; for duals ; nor were the commissioners with- he was not so fortunate as to possess a seat out sufficient powers to act.
in parliament, till the bright æra of the There was every reason, he declared, to present reign was quite at an end. He hope for success in America. The Con- had not the happiness to be seated among