Oldalképek
PDF
ePub

ought to liave had dealt him here, need, if they submitted to these mandates of

surely, pot be afraid of any consequences France, England, in exercising her undoubt. " which can result from the desirable and ed right of retaliation, would, of course, “ desired proof of his having been here. seize and confiscate all neutral ships and car" IV ho took him away?. IVhere was he goes, bound to or from any port of France, " landed upon the continent ? Why such or under the known copiroul of France, or

squeamishness about keeping bin here, in a country allied with France in the war. " until M. Taileyrand's answer was receiv- The neutrals do submit; for, neither of « ed? “ Our laws did not permit us to keep them make any public remonstrance, or prohim long in prison.” No? They have test, against the decrees of France. There

perinitted men to be kept a good while, are instances cited, in which the decrees in prison, Mr. Cobbett, without any trial were acted upon ; but that is of no conse

or examination.Were I to state all quence; for, if the decrees had their inte " the suspicious circumstances that present tended effect, namely, that of putting an " themselves to my mind, I should extend end to all communication between Eng“ this letter to a length that might be in- land and neutral states, there would, of “ convenient to you, and that certainly course, no captures ensue ; and, if they did « would be useless.. -1 arm, Sir, your not produce that effect to the desired extent, friend, and No SHAM PHILANTHROPIST. they would naturally produce it in some de--Fet. 22, 1908."

gree. Less communication with neutrals

would exist in consequence of them ; some SUMMARY OF POLITICS.

ships would be prevented from coming to PROCEEDINGS IN PARLIAMENT.

1.

England, and all would come charged with Orders in Council. II. Petition of the an additional weight of insurance. Thus Bildesec Grund Jury.---Upon the Or- matters stood until November last, when ders in Council discussions have taken place, the present ministers caused the Orders in in both Huuse's of Parliament; and, of Council to be issued, which orders contain a course, as these orders have been advised by set of rules intended to prevent France, all the ins, the outs discover that they are very her allies, and all the countries under the rischievous and wicked things. After vo- known controul of France, from having any lumes have been spoken and written upon communicatioit with neutrals, except through the subject, there are very few persons, the channel of the custom house of Eng. comparatively speaking, who seem to have a Jand, where the goods of the neutral, inclear idea of what these famous orders are, tended for those countries, are to pay a duty, or, of the effect which they are intended to which duty, finally paid by the enemy, will produce. In spite, therefore, of the stulti- go into the Englisli treasury. There are nufying effects of the many speeches which I merous rules contained in the Orders in bove read, relative to these orders, I will Council ; but this one will suffice for our endeavour to communicate to the reader my purpose, because the arguments, on both ideas respecting them ; which I shall do, sides, which apply to this, will, with some however, with great diffidence, being far insignificant variations, apply to all the rest. from certain, that my ignorance of the mat- There are two objections, which the ter is not equal to that of almost any one of outs make to this rule; the first is, that it the orators whose speeches I have read. is contr:ry to the law of vations ; a very Here, then, at a venture,' The Emperor vague charge, and one that cannot be subof France having, by his several decrees, ob- stantiated, even if we were to admit the book stricted, as much as lay in his power, all of a Frenchman, whose dame was Vattel, commerce with England, carried on by neu- and which contains merely the opinions of tral ships, and having, by one particular de- the said Vatiel, to be the book of the law cice, declared this whole kingdom in a state binding cpon England; for, neither in that vi blockade, and ordered his cruizers, of book, nor in any other book upon the subcogirse, in seize, as lawful prize, neutral ject, is there any instance of a case such as vessels, bound to or from 'any port of this that now before us, The better way of kingdom ; having, in short, declared to the stating the objection is, tberefore, to say that? neutrals, that he should consider the slight- the rule which we have laid down, is unjust. est mark of their living bad, or being about This, indeed, the outs do say. They say, to live, communication with England, as a we have no right to punish America, for inproof of their ships and cargoes meriting stance, because Françe bas broken through contiscation, the lute ministers intimated to all the rules redziugio neutraliiy. Very true ; the neutrals (there being only Denmark, por do we intend to punish America ; we Portugal, and the Anerican States), that, intend to punish France ; and, if Ancia

suffer, it is neither our fault nor our wish. “ This note I must recommend to your parThe decrees of Napoleon are intended to in- ticular attention ; you will state to the jure us. That is very fair, and we have American government, that his majesty a right to retaliate. But, the decrees of “ relies with confidence on their good sense France relate to America; they make " and firmuess in resisting pretensions, America an instrument in producing the " which, if suffered to take effect, must injury to us ; therefore, we have a right prove so destructive to the cominerce of to make America our instrument in pro- « all'neutral nations. His majesty has learnt, ducing injury to France. Let France that the measures announced in the crea repeal her decrees, and America ceases to " have already, in some instances, been carsuffer. As matters sfood, previous to the or ried into execution by the privateers of the Orders in Council, a ship-load of tobacco enemy, and there could be no doubt that came from America to England with all the his inajesty would have an undisputed additional price, which arose from the high right to exercise a just retaliation. Neuinsurance, occasioned by the danger of cap- “ tral nations, cannot, indeed, expect that ture in consequence of the French decrees; " the king should suffer the commerce of while another ship-load of tobacco went to “ his eneinies to be carried on through Francé, free from such high price, because " them, whilst they submit to the prohibithere was no danger of capture from us. or tion which France has decreed against the Was this just ? To suffer things to remain in " commerce of his majesty's subjects. But such a state would bave been a most base " though the right of retaliation would undesertion of our naval superiority. But, say “ questionably accrue to his majesty, yet his the OUTS, the Americans did remonstrate " majesty is unwilling, except in the last against the French decree, and obtained an extremity, to have recourse to measures assurance, that it should not be enforced " which must prore so distressing to all nawith regard to them. This is not the fact. " tions not engaged in the war against No such assurance is contained in the note « France." -Has America resisted the of the French minister to the Americin mic pretensions of the decree? It is notorious pister, upon this subject ; and, if such an that she has not ; and, it is equally notorious, assurance had so been given, we had nothing that the president, in his last speech to the to do with it. The decree contained no ex- Congress, says that he has nothing to comceptions ; the decree remained unrepealed; plain of in the conduct of France, though the and there was not, and is not, any public act French decree, observe, remained unreof the government of the American siates, pealed, and unmodified. The consequence protesting against either the principle or the is, then, that, according to Lerd Hoivick's practice of that decree. 'Here, therefore, own letter, we bad a right to adopt the meawas a complete acquiescence, on the part of sure of retaliation, especially as events had America ; and, I think, it evidently appears, occurred, which rendered such measure that the correspondence between the Ame- more and more necessary to our safety. And rican and French minister was intended for yet, Lord Howick and his patriotic colleagues no other purpose, than that of putting the are now blaming the measure, and that, too, former in possession of something to shew to upon the ground of its injustice towards us, in order to induce us to forego our in- America. --The other objection to this tended and threatened retaliation. But, how measure, is, that it is impolitic; that it is the out faction can stand up, in the face of calculated to injureus, more thau it is to inthe correspondence now published, and com- jure France. I will not repeat the arguplain of the messures of retaliation, must be ments that I have already, more than once, matter of astonishment to every one not ac- made use of to prove the contrary of this customed to observe the conduct of political proposition; but, I think, the negative of it parties. At the outset of that correspon- might be pretty safely inferred tiom wbat cience (which, as having been laid before Lord Henry Paity has said in support of the Parliament; will, of course, appear, in its aflirmative. He is reported to have told place in the Parliamentary Debates), Lord the House of Comptons, that the “ arts of Howick writes to Mr. Erskine thus : * I sub:iitution," to which the French would " transmit to you also the copy of another bare recourse, would be la ring injuries to “ Noie presented by their lordships to the this coming and to her colonies. Why, “ American commissioners, previously to now, it, by these arts, the French should

the signature of the treaty, on the subject find out chemical sugar and coffee and coiof the extraordinary declarations avd or- tou, what harm vonid that do us? None " ders of the French government, issued at that I 013 see ; but, while the discovery is " Berlin on the 16th of November last, going on, the inconueniences of France must be' very great indeed, while the Orders in ed to exist ; namely, that the late 'ministers Council must go near to the producing of went a considerable way in giving up to starvation in Spain and Portugal. Holland America the great point of the right of also must suffer severely. Hamburgh, Den. searching for seamen. It is clear that Lords mark, Russia ; all must endure, not only in. Holland and Auckland did pledge themselves convenience, but suffering; and the two-fold to do something more than enforce the strictconsequence of that suffering will naturally be, est possible orders for regulating the manner a perfect conviction of the great power of of searching.. Now, what was that someEngland, and a hatred of France whose am- thing more? They are hard pushed by Mr. bition exposes them to the effects of the ex- Canning, to explain what they meant; and, ercise of that power.

But, his lordship ap- it must be confessed, that they give an anprehends, that we are in greater danger from swer far from satisfactory; and, in short, it a glut than France is from a scarcity. He is evident, that, rather than have gone to is afraid that we shall die smothered with war with America, they would have abansweets; or, if we survive the effect of the doned the right altogether. For this, if for no sweets, that a superabundance of cloathing other reason, it was a fortunate circumstance will kill us. The fact is, however, that we for the country that they were disinissed. hear a general outcry raised in France, and When one of them tells us, that it would be in all the countries linder her controul, a misfortune to see America at war with against these Orders in Council; we hear France, because, by that event, we should an out-cry in America also ; but we hear lose the sale of certain manufactures, none in England, except amongst persons like what are we to expect from them? It is the Barings and amongst the opposition, abundantly evident, that the politics of the both animated by notives purely selfish. little clan of Scotch writers prevailed in the

- The bill for giving effect to the Orders late cabinet ; that the ministers were the in Council has been carried by a very great mere funnels, through which they blew; majority in the Houses of parliament, and and that all would have been peddling and is certainly approved of by a still greater patch-work. It was so long ago as Deceni. majority out of doors. The measure is ber, 1806, that I took the aların as to their looked upon as an act of defiance of all the intentions with regard to America ; I enworld; as an assertion of our right of mari- deavoured to communicate that alarm to the time dominion. The enemy, encouraged by public; and I Hatter myself that my endraour long forbearance, issues, in the heyday vours were not without avail. I stated my of triumph and from a capital which he has reasons for fearing, that a good treaty would conquered, a decree declaring England in a not come out of the hands of Lords Holland state of blockade. As it he had said : and Auckland, that my fears were well “ Now, that I have conquered the continent, founded the proof is now before the world. “ I will set seriously about my last Jabour, Well might the President refuse to ratify the and will begin by ordering the islanders treaty, not finding it to contain all that he " to be closely shut up, until I have leisure demanded. He sent it back, too, like a set «s to invade them." Our answer to this is, of articles of capitulation, underwritten an Order in Council, making him pay a duty here and there : “ this I agree to; this i into the English treasury upon every article reject; this I agree to, provided so and so." of foreign goods that he receives ; and this What an insolent proceeding! Yet, if the we enforce. “ I will suffer nothing,” says late ministers had been in place, when this he, " to come to the continent from or distigured instrument came back, 'my firm tlvrough England.". To which we answer: belief is, that they would have resumed the “ the continent shall have nothing that does negociation upon the fornier basis, and not go from or through England.” Why, the would, like the conimanders of a town, sumvery effect of such words, if adhered to, out- moned to surrender and reduced to its last weighs, in the scale of rational consequence, dead horse, have put their hands to the hu. all the commerce of all the Barings on earth. miliating conditions imposed. The right of Lord Henry Pelty, however, thinks nothing searching for English seamen of this. Nay, he thinks, that it would be bad American ships ought never, for one mo. policy to induce America to declare war ment, to have been entertained, as a point against France; because it would diminish for discussion. Not only was it so entertainthe sale of Our manufactures. · A fine ed by the late ministers; but it was expressly

. statësiran it must be, who has a mind of left

open for future discussion, and a note of this stanıp! The publication of the cor- that purportaccompanied the treaty. What was respondence with America has brought to this but to acknowledge that there were enterlight a fact, which I have often said I believ- tained by ourown government doubtsrespecte

on board

ing the existence of the right? Upon the become, by its own intrinsic merit, the obsame principle, that commerce ought to be ject of general attention and perusal, it impreferred to every thing else, they would, in poses on its author a sort of necessity to preall likelihood, have acted after the peace of serve the character it has acquired, by adTilsit; and, then, instead of throwing mitting into its pages such contributions onNapoleon and his vassal states into conster- ly, as have some merit at least to recomnation, as we now have, we should have mend them. The first requisite for good been totally occupied in sending negociations writing is good sense, and sound argument. to Paris, and in looking out for the enemy's An ingredient, almost as necessary, is good flotilla. - II. · A Petition from a late gramınar. And although, where the former Grand Jury of the county of Middlesex, obtain, a few small errors in the latter may complaining of certain enormities in the be easily overlooked ; yet when the language management of the Cold-Bath-Fields prison, made use of is as barbarous and ungrammawas, a few days past, brought before par- tical, as the facts are false, and the arguments lianient by Mr. Sheridan (who, while in inconclusive, you need not fear to incur the office, said not a word about abuses of any loss of your merited reputation for impartiasort); but, it was withdrawn, at the sug- lity, by refusing to admit such compositions gestion of the ministers, because it purport. into your Register: and I am sure your readed to be the petition of a grand jury who ers in general would have thanked you, if were no longer a grand jury. The object of you had spared them the trou of labourthis was, of course, to obtain delay, and to ing thronghi the sapient reflexions of your take from the petition a part, at least, of sagacious correspondent, J. F. D. the tythe its consequence. It was presented the next hater of Taunton. After having observed, day, signed by the foreman of the grand " that there is no business of a domestic najury, in his private capacity ; so that, it is ture likely to come before parliament of an how the petition of one individual, instead equal weight and importance than the subof being that of the Grand Inquest of a ject of tithes, as the abolition of which is seCounty. The substance of the petition riously and devoutly prayed for, &c.” he vehas been given in the news-papers ; but, I ry sagaciously tells us, that nothing can do not choose to offer any remarks upon it, ameliorate this most abominable inipost but until I can lay it before my readers at full a total alolition. This appears to me a cuJength. It is truly curious to observe how rious way of monding a thing. Aud to indifferent and cold the opposition appear

mend the matter still more, he proposes an jo have been upon this subject. No aniina- equally curious mode of abolition, viz. by tion; none of that eagerness which they commutation. I always thought will now discover in ploading the cause of the ! poor,

that Taunton had been in the South of Eng. " harınless, suttering Danes.” The prison- land; but, I conclude that I have been uners in Cold-Bath-Fields prison are their der a mistake, and suspect that it is situate countrymen, and are entitled to their pro- in the North of Ireland. J. F. D. then tells tection ; but, then, there was, in all pro- us that our churches are deserted, and our bability, nothing to be gottens no debating religion declines; because, what? Because triumph to be obtained, in this case; and, the farmer, who rents his land is subject to there was, on the other side, the fearful the payinent of tythes; and who, therefore, consideration of what might happen in the pays so much less rent to his landlord as the way of indirectly giving credit to the form- tythe is worth, wants to cheat the person er exertions of Sir Francis Burdett. The who is intitled to that tythe of his just dues. petition, however, neither party, nor both For (as D. X. in the next letter has truly togetber, can stifle. It must appear in said) the owner of the tythe has as good a prints and it, is one of the things, which right to that tythe, as the owner of the land will, in the end, produce those effects, has to his rent: the law, and prescription, which every good man so anxiously wishes which is a branch of the law, has given it to for. Along with the petition should appear him. Is not this the fact, Mr. Cobbett? the names of all the persons, who signed And if it be so, is this honest? In 99 cases the first petitions for the public will very out of 100 of the disputes that occur between well know how to decide upon the question the owner and tythe payer, is not the main of “ informality."

cause of them to be found in the unjustifiaBotley, 25th February, 1808.

ble attempts on the part of the latter to beat

down the other, and compel him to accept a TYTHES.

very inferior and unequal price for his tythe? Sir, When a periodical work, like It is almost universally true, that when a yours, baş forced itself into notice, and is new incumbent appears in a parish, a combi. nation of the farmers is immediately formed right scarcely less obnoxious than the other) to harrass him into an acceptance of their or of any land owner to his rents, be bunted own terms: a natural feeling of resentment down and persecuted for claiming their own: against oppression frequentiy urges the tythe let not the right be loaded with an abuse owner to resist such attempts, and be resolves which belongs not to it: let us not remedy to take his tythe in kind: this again irritates one evil by substituting a greater: and above the farmers, who “ work him up" as the all, let us do as we would be done by, and phrase is in the poor rates : and so the quar- render unto every man his due. I dare say, rel continues with mutual aggravations : but, were I a farmer, I should rather not let the as I said before, it generally originates in the parson's team into my field : but considering wajast and unmanly attack of the multitude duly that 9 tenths only of its produce beagainst the individual, in their base attempts longed to myself by the law of the land, and to make an unfair bargain with him in the that the remaining tenth by the law of the outse:, whether he be a lay improprietor, or land belonged to some one else (no matter a member of the cherch.J. F. D. then co!)- whom it not being mire) I do think without descends to let us into a very great secret, complimenting myself too highly, I should viz. that disputes at law of a very serious im- have honesty enough to offer bien a fair price port, frequently arise from frivolous causes. for it; if we happened to differ about that But, surely, Sir, we do not want an oracle price, which if it were a fair one, would vefrom Taunton to tell us that. We kuow ry rarely harpen, I shouli propose to call very well that the feather of a partridge, or in an honest surveyor, who kuew the value the scent of a hare has given rise to more li- of the thing, and would do what is right be. tigation, than all the disputes about tythes tween dian and man, and abide by his decithat have been agitated since the days of sion. And where is the tythe owner, Mr. Archbishop Winchelsey, 500 years ago. (No C. who would reject this otter? Or rather, bad argument this, by the bye, in favour of where is the farmer who is honest and just a position of your own, Mr. C. that a pro- enough to make it?-1 protest, Sir, I have pensity to war, or to fight, which is war, is a not seen or heard of any plan that appears passion natural to all the creation.) But to me so likely to rcconcile the shepherd to what has this to do with the right to tythes ? his flock, and to cut up by the roots that proDoes J. F. D. seriously think that if his lific source of parochial contention, the Bashaw tythemonger harboured a pique quarrels about tythes, as the appointment unagainst his friend, he would not have con- der the authority of parliament by the matrived to indulge it even if he had been no gistrates of each county, of a conpetent per• tythemonger? A pack of fox hounds would son in each parish as a surveyor and assessor, have done the business as effectually. · But who should be sworn to a due and impartial this is not an evil arising out of the tythes, discharge of his duty, and subject to a heavy but from the malevolent spirit of man. I fine for every breach of it, whose duty it defy J. F. D. and all the Solomons of Taun- should be to assess and ascertain the value of - ton Dean to contradict me in the assertion, every tythable article: for which he might that if my rich neighbour injures me, a poor be paid by a poundage or percentage to be coitager, by turning his trace horses into my limited by statute, and to be borne equally Jittle field of wheat, and trampling the corn by both parties, who should be bound by the which is to feed my family, or by leaving assessment so to be made. This plan I think open the gate of the next field, and giving at least as likely to fill our churches, and reaccess to other cattle, and thereby doing me store tinanimity, cordiality, and brotherly considerable damage, or by throwing down love between all ranks; as J. F. D.'s plan of my fences and carrying off my corn before amelioration by means of abolition, brought the tythe is set out, a jury of my Somerset- about by commutation. If you think these shirë neighbours will teach him a better les. strictures worth your notice, I am sure they son, and give me ample redress for the in- will receive it. But if they should not find jury and insult. And the greater the dis- a place in your Register, I shall pot quarrel tance in point of rank and fortune between with your impartiality, being sure to find me and my oppressor, the inore signal will your pages filled with better matter than can be their visitation upon him for his injustice. ever flow from the pen of your constant This, Sir, is not mere theory :- every circuit reader and admirer.—SUUM CUIQUE.-Feb. brings it into practice.- Observe, Mr. Cob

17, 1808 bert, that I am not defending the policy of P. S. From a passage or two in the Taunthe present system of tything: but let not ton Apollo's letter, about a revolution and ' those whose right to tythes is as indisputable change of goverument, I am almost inclined as that of a lord of a manor to his tines (a to suspect that something more is meant

« ElőzőTovább »