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VOL. XIII. No. 11.]

LONDON, SATURDAY, MARCH 12, 1808.

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"A prostitution of honours and rewards, particularly for military services, is one of the strongest mars "of national decline."LORD MOIRA. Speech on the Danish Expedition.

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SUMMARY OF POLITICS,

LORD LAKE (continued from page 375.) It was observed before, but is not unworthy of being again observed, that in making the grant to the family of Lord Lake, both parties were perfectly of accord. They can wrangle upon other points; they can dispute, inch by inch, about papers relating to any matter, wherein they can trump up a charge against each other, amounting to an allegation that they are respectively unfit for place. This is all fair play; but, when it is a question of merely public interest; and especially when the money of the public is proposed to be granted to one, or any, of themselves, the two factions, like two lawyers at the end of a pleading, are all politeness and complaisance, all liberality and generosity: they seem to strive to their utmost to out-do each other in protesting against every thing that is mean. -Of Lord Lake the people of England know nothing. There are not, in all probability, two persons out of a thousand, in the country, who know that there ever was such a man in existence; and now that his name comes to be frequently mentioned, the first question you hear, is," who and what was he?" It is impossible to make the people believe, that a person, of whom they have never heard before, should merit, out of the fruits of their labour, such large sums of money. Mr. Paull has, in a public letter, stated that this lord, for several years, was in the receipt of not less than twenty thousand pounds annually. Nobody has contradicted this statement, and, I believe, nobody can, with truth, contradict it. He had, besides, a lucrative sinecure, and his pay as a colonel of a regiment. Yet, the demand upon the public purse is now made, under the allegation, that he died poor, and that his family stands in need of something from the public, wherewith to maintain a degree of splendour suitable to the title of nobility. Lord Folkestone objected to this plea of poverty, and well he might; for, if it be admitted, where shall we hope to find an end to the demands proceeding thereon? The plea of one poor man is as good as that of another poor man; and, if we confine the

[386 concession to those who have titles of nobility, the number, God knows, is by no means small. Admit the validity of this plea, and it follows, that, when once a title is bestowed, for services real or pretended, that the nation, whatever may be its circumstances, is bound to maintain the family for ever afterwards. No matter whence the poverty may have arisen. No matter from what extravagance, what follies, what vices: if, without any inquiry as to these points, the parliament is to grant money, upon the bare plea of poverty, as it has done in the present instance, it is no matter what the cause of the poverty may be; and, if we lived under a race of profligate princes (a case which history proves not to be impos sible), some of them might first pillage and impoverish a subject, and then send him to parliament upon the plea of poverty, making use of their party connections for the purpose of thus disguisedly perpetrating their robberies of the people. A case of this sort, is not, indeed, to be apprehended at the present time; but, it is sufficient to show, that it may possibly exist, in order to prevent the establishing of the precedent in question.But, seeing that poverty is the plea for a grant, out of our earnings, of nine thousand pounds in ready money, and two thousand pounds a year in perpetuity; seeing that the taxes of the nation are to be mortgaged to the amount of fifty or sixty thousand pounds (not one hundred thousand as stated by mistake in my last) upon this plea, we may, surely, be permitted to ask, how Lord Lake became poor? MR. PAULL'S statement respecting the pecuniary affairs of this lord is as follows, and, before he peruses it, the reader is requested to bear in mind, that this statement has not been contradicted. "Let the conduct of Lord Lake at Lin"celles, and on the continent, and in Carle"ton-house, have been ever so meritorious "(for even Lord Castlereagh will hardly

bring to our remembrance his services at "Killala or in any other part of Ireland), I "maintain that he was more than amply "remunerated. He had his regiment, and " he had the government of Plymouth. In *** 1900, he was offered a red ribbon; bet, N

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"in preference, he pressed for, and obtain-
"ed, principally through the influence of
his Royal Highness the Prince of Wales,"
"the situation the most lucrative that the
crown could bestow on a military man-
"that of commander-in chief, and senior
member of the council of Bengal, with a
"fixed salary, exclusive of powerful patro-
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nage, and the means of providing for his
family, of £16,000 per annum, paid
monthly, in a country where the legal in-
"terest is twelve per cent.-a situation that
"no military man, for many years past,
"was allowed to remain in for more than
"three or four years at most; a period

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during which a splendid fortune may ho68 nourably be acquired.-Lord Lake was

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appointed in 1800, and arrived in Bengal "early in the following year, and I assert as of a fact, what I can prove, and I dare the

friends of Lord Lake to deny it, that pre"vious to Angust, 1803, the breaking out "of the Mahratta war, Lord Lake had

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saved sufficient to pay into the hands of "Mr. John Rudd (who received a monthly instalment, on account of those having claims, in England, on Lord Lake), the ›❝enormous sum of £38,000, which, I was well assured by those who had the management of the fund, was the whole "debts of the deceased general.——After the payments to Mr. Rudd of £38,000, General Lake took the field against the "Mahrattas. At Allegheer, Delhi, and "Agrah (exclusive of grain, cattle, and "stores, to a great amount in value, and of "every description), the sum, in actual mo* ney, was, eight lacs at Allegheer; ten at "Delhi; and at Agrah, though stated atonly

24 Jacs in Lord Lake's dispatches, the "actual sum was 34; but taking his own sfatement of money (exclusive of cattle, grain, and stores), 8 at Allegheer, ten at Delhi, and 24 at Agrah, those sums make *42 lacs of rupees, which, at £12,500 for

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the lac (the rate at which the money was "borrowed by the Company) Lord Lake

received, at these places, one-eighth of
£525,000, or a sun exceeding 105,000;
the elephants, camels, horses, grain, and
yaluables, with the whole of the camp
equipage taken at Allegheer, Coil, Delhi,
Agrah, Laswaree, Sassnee, Bidjigheer,
Collliurah, &c. attendant on Hindostanee
arinies, amounting to 130,000 fighting
men, exceeded the value of 50 lacs of
rupees, or £024,000 sterling. But take
their value only at equal amount to the
specie, and Gen. Lake received a sum in
prize money of at least £130,000 ster-
fing. From Sept. 1808 to April 1807,

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"Gen. Lake received, exclusive of the in"terest, accruing from this enormous sum, and exclusive of field-allowances, the sum "of £56,000, paid monthly, or exchanged "for company paper, making, with the "sum paid Mr. Rudd, an aggregate of "£224,000, exclusive of the immense. "amount of interest received in India; and

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yet, notwithstanding these well known "facts Lord Castlereagh has the audacity

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to come to parliament for a grant, from "the burdened people of Great Britain of "£2,000 per ann. for the successor of the "deceased general. But, gentlemen, "this is not all, Lord Lake carried with "him to India, his son George Augustus "Lake, a captain in the army, as his aid-de

camp and military secretary, and who, as "such, became postmaster in the field, and "for a considerable time acting adjutant

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general, or quarter-master-general, to the King's forces serving in India; which si "tuation gave him increased rank and pay. "Exclusive of the emoluments arising from "the latter appointment, captain, now "Lieut.-Colonel Lake, from the hour of his "arriving in India, received (living in the "family of his father) a monthly allowance "of £750, or £8,000 per ann., exclusive "of interest, bis allowance for six years

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exceeded £48,000, and in that period he "received also a further sum, exceeding "£15,000 for prize-money, making au "aggregate of £63,000 sterling, exclusive "of the interest, accumulated by monthly payments. Thus I have proved, that the late Lord Lake, and his young son, received a sum, in six years, greatly ex ceeding£300,000; and yet, without consulting the fame of the deceased, or "the distresses of the country, the King's ministers dare to propose the grant I have mentioned; and it is yet to be seen, "there is one member bold enough to resist

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it in the House of Commons." Now, as I have before observed, this statement of Mr. Paul (for the making of which he i entitled to the thanks of the public) has hitherto remained unanswered. There is, indeed, no reason to suppose that it is ma terially incorrect. The sources of "Lord Lake's wealth are pointed out, the amount of it mentioned in detail; the statement is made public; and there is not any ground for supposing, that it has not proceeded from public motives, Three hundred thou sand pounds, therefore, allowing it to be fifty thousand pounds, more or less, is, according to the best evidence that we possess, the sum, which, within the laɛt seven years, has come into the hands, and become the

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property, of Lord Lake and of the heir to his title. How, then, has this money been spent Whither is it gone One of two facts is certain either it has been squander ed away, or it is still, for the greater part, possessed. Bet those, who now come to the oppressed nation with the plea of pony verty, choose as to which side of the di lemima they prefer.Mr. Whitbread said; that he was disposed to resist the proposed grant, but, when he heard the plea of Terty advanced, he was obliged to give way?" Gye way! what, without any inquiry, to ascertain whether the plea was founded, or not? Upon other points upon points where Party interests are at stake, Mr. Whitbread can express his doubts as to the correctness of the assertions of the ministers) Nay, he can contradict, fatly contradict those asserBut when the question is whether se plake money shall be given away, he Has An debts at all, it seems, and scorns to Leiberal as to call for any inquiry, for any proof, whatever! He delights to dwell

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on the miseries occasioned by the war; he backs the petitions of those who call for peace; he bids the ministers look to the hundreds of thousatids of starving manufacturers ;"" ;"'-bit,” be ́appears to forget, that it is the taking of the fruits of the people's boar, and the bestowing of them upon those who do not labour; that this, and this alone is the real cause of national distress. War creates distress in the same way; but, it appears strange, that he, who so sorely laments over those who are distressed by the war, should have no feeling for the distress occasioned by pecuniary grants.This grant to the family of Lord Lake is another of the expences which India has brought upon England. It has been proved, over and over again, that the possession of India is injurious to this country, and a benefit to the East India Company only, But, the thousands of evils attending that possession are hidden from the sight of most men; and, indeed, if one reflects for a moment on the means which have been used, by the powerful parties interested, to persuade the nation, that the possession of India is necessary to the well-being of England, it is not to be wondered at, that deception so complete should generally prevail. The poor-houses of England are, in the one fourth part, perhaps, filled by the influence of India. That is the accursed channel, through which much of the fruit of English industry passes into the possession of those who do nothing. Yet, for the keeping open of this accursed channel we are content to eaf and to pay, and your patriots of the

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new school, such as Mr. Roscoe, while they. seem to grudge a guinea, for the defence of England herself, are ready to grant millions.. for the securing and extending of our, Empire in the East. The grant of a. million of pounds to the East India Compa-.

(which already owes the nation six OE, seven millions) passes, the House of Com. mons without a single word of comment, from any quarter of that Assembly; and,. po-there appears to be little doubt, that the, whole of the dials of that Company, the, individuals of which are gajujng great riches, will finally, and, perhaps, very shortly, be. thrown upon the nation, which is already a. taxed as to leave no man in possession of any thing, which, in the true sense of the word, he can call his own, even, t the pro prietors of the soil being little else than the stewards of the ministry,- This is the situation, in which we are, when a demand is made upon us for money to support the dignity of a family, which, during the last, seven years, have received out of the taxes raised upon us, three hundred thousand pounds. For, observe, it is a gross decep., tion to represent this sum as having been derived from any other source. The plunder of the Mahrattas, for instance, consist, ed, I suppose, of gold and jewels, amongst other things; but, the army of India, the fleet of India; the wars for the preservation, of India; the thousand of expences on account of India, are from English resources, and we shall find, that, in this circuitous way, all that is gained by Indian adventurers, comes from the sweat of our brows. Look into the account of the money annually voted by parliament; see what immense sums are voted on account of India, while, on the other side, not one penny is received from India, in any shape, or under any name. Out of these sums it is, that Lord Lake and his son have, according to the statement of Mr. Paull, in his excellent let ter above quoted, received three hundred thousand pounds. What they have received in the way of salary, pay, or allowances, or under whatever other name the fingerers of our earnings have been able to invent, obviously comes from the taxes, because you will find, in the accounts before-mentioned, millions paid to the East India Company, for expences, real or pretended, of wars for their own protection, while it is notorious, that they are millions in debt to the nation; and while it is equally notorious, that they have aldebty which the nation is finally to take upon itself which debt has, of course, partly arise from the sums of money paid oaland Lake and his son.., Where is the 5081 Ingå ni ateri

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difference to us, whether we pay three hundred thousand pounds directly to Lord Lake and his son, or whether that sum be paid to them by a company, who receive the money from us, without having given us any value for it? This, therefore, is the true light, in which to view the transaction: we have, during the last seven years, paid three hundred thousand pounds to Lord Lake and his successor, and now that Lord Lake is dead, that successor comes to us for the means of supporting his dignity, he being too poor to support out of his own purse. I object to the monument also, not merely as a thing of expence, but as not being merited. I know of no deeds of great valour performed by Lord Lake, or by any commander that has ever been in India. Even Lord Cornwallis was a hero there. is an inferior species of warfare which is there carried on. It is against a people not to be counted against Europeans. I should as soon think of a monument for a man, who, with a pack of mastiffs, had vanquished a numerous herd of cattle. We despise the idea of " the conquerors of Peru and Mexico," yet, it would be impossible to point out any essential difference in the two cases. The heroes, indeed, who return from India, will tell you that they have had bloody fellows to encounter; but, you have always this one fact wherewith to answer them that there are thirty or forty millions of those bloody fellows, kept in subjection, nay in abject slavery, by a thousandth part of their number of Europeans. There is no valour to be displayed in the defeating of such people; and, therefore, none of the rewards of valour ought to attend it.. The parliament may, as far as they can go, put the name of Lord Lake upon a level with that of Lord Nelson; but they cannot, thank God, give it any other than its proper place in the minds of the people. "Brave man!"" oh gallant man!" They may repeat this as long as they please. They may even pass a vote to that amount; but the people will still have their own opinions; or rather, they will have no opinion at all about what they have never heard of; and they will remain heart-whole though fifty Lord Lakes should expire in a year. Sir Francis Burdett appears, from the report of his speech, to have made something sounding like an apology for denying. Lord Lake to have discovered any proofs of great military prowess; but, surely, there required no apology for speaking the truth, which ought to be spoken, and freely too, of the dead as well as of the living; for, as to the maxim, that no harm is to be said of the

dead, if it means any thing more than that particular care should be taken not to exaggerate, and not to speak evil of them unnecessarily, it is perfectly absurd; because the observance of it must, of course, render biography and history, not only useless, but as far as it produced any effect at all, mischievous. What, I would ask the reader," must be the character of that maxim, the observance of which would transform the Newgate Calendar into a series of panegyrics? The gibbeted robber is dead as well as the peculator or corruptor or boroughmonger whom he murdered; and, if the circumstance of death is to seal up our lips with regard to the latter, where is the justice of hanging up the former that his name may be held in execration as long as the last of his bones shall remain unreduced to its native dust, nay as long as the fragment of the most durable of wood and of metal, shall retain the signs of having been dedicated to the commemoration of guilt? Where is the justice of this? Let those who are advocates for the maxim answer me the question. Indeed, there seems to be no reason for this maxim, other than that it has been found in some Latin author, who, in all probability, was actuated by a selfish motive, and whose doctrine, therefore, will, it is to be feared, never want an abundance of advocates. If ever there be an occasion, where the me. rits of a person deceased ought to be freely discussed, it surely is when a claim is preferred, founded upon those merits. A similar discussion in history is useful, and, therefore, proper; but, in a case like the present it is absolutely necessary to the ends of justice; and, if the persons, who are to decide upon the claim, act in trust for others, and yet shinn the discussion, they are guilty of a breach of that trust.→→→→ But, I may be asked, why these observa tions, now that the monument project has been given up? The observations apply to the grant of money as well as to the mont ment; but, the proposition was made, and it was from very shame only, that it was abandoned. How was it abandoned too? What were the reasons given? These rea sons are worthy of being recorded. Lord Castlereagh, who had on the 29th of Feb. given notice, that he should move for the monument, came to the House of Com mons, on the 2d of March, and said, that, in calling the attention of the house to "the notice respecting a monument toobe "erected to the memory of lord Lake,

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which had been suspended by a notice," "having a prior claim to the attention of the "house, on a former night, did not mean

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"to recur to that notice, or again to offer to "the house the motion which was the sub"ject of it. Having communicated with

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many persons devoted to the memory of "lord Lake, and participating in the high "veneration in which he held the services "of that gallant man, he found that it was "the general wish of those persons to give way to the difficulties of parliamentary form that had arisen. The family of the "noble lord, deeply penetrated with a sense *** of gratitude for the vote passed the other night, was willing to rest its claims on the public bounty there, rather than press a "point upon which many of those who had "voted in approbation of lord Lake's gene"ral merit and services, may be found in "opposition. In this feeling he thought it "his duty to concede; but he could not "help lamenting that parliament appeared " to have laid it down as principle, that "the glorious testimony of a public monu"ment was to be confined to the services of "those who died in battle. Lord Howe's

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monument was the only exception to this "rule, for that of lord Cornwallis's stood "on very distinct grounds. He admitted "that the limitation to those who died in "battle was a good and convenient general "principle. But at the same time, when "monuments were held to be the most "appropriate marks of public gratitude, as being at the same time most honorable to "the deceased, and best calculated to excite "emulation in the minds of posterity, it "seemed to be a strange exclusion that pre"vented a lord Lake, a lord Rodney, and a "lord Duncan, from being found among "the illustrious heroes thus consecrated to "fame, while many persons of much in"ferior rank and merit were so honoured. "The distinction would never be asked but " for striking examples of merit and ser"vice, and the reward may safely be grant"ed without the fear of deviating into "abuse. It would certainly be no injury to "those who fell in battle, to admit to a parti"cipation of this honour, those who had "equally entitled themselves by victory, " and who had no other bar to their claim "but that of a greater interval of time be"tween their service and their death. It "was not the death but the service that was "the proper object of reward."——{ _will not pester the reader with any remarks upon these opinions of his lordship, which are of no more importance than the conversation which passed at mother Catalani's, when he and his wife, the other day, were honoured by an admission to a select party of that celebrated squaller. His facts are all that I shall

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meddle with; and I shall be glad to know what he meant by "the difficulties of par"liamentary form that had arisen" to prevent his motion for the monument. His lordship is famous for talking much and saying little, and this is an instance of his talent in that way. I know of no "parlia

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mentary form" that there was to prevent the making of the motion, of which notice had been given. No: what he might have said, was, that the opposition which the grant had met with, made him fear, that the monument might meet with a much stronger opposition. Perhaps thirty or forty persons might have spoken against it. This, however, he would not have regarded; but, it was the division that he was afraid of, and he was quite sure, that the house would be divided, seeing that illiberal" man, Sir Francis Burdett, would, in probability, be present. To have carried the question by mere dint of office and of inflnence would. have been a little too barefaced, and he saw that it was to be carried in no other way. The reasons which he gave for withdrawing his notice were truly worthy of him and of the claimants. "The family of the nobla "lord was willing to rest its claims upon the "vote already passed." That is to say, they were not sublimated by their nobility out of their sober senses; and that like good, prudent, philosophical people, they preferred "the solid pudding to the empty praise;" or, at any rate, being provided for themselves, they were content to waive their claims to that which was to have done honour to the memory of him, upon the alledged merits of whom, they had claimed and obtained that provision- -I cannot dismiss this subject, without going back a little to notice the reported speech of MR. BANKES, on the 29th of February. "He thought "the question might be judiciously divided; "he could not resist the grant of the pension to lord Lake, and differed on this as he did on many other topics, from an "hon. baronet. He thought, that to berally reward brilliant services was, in "all cases, the best economy. He object"ed, however, to the retrospective date commencing at 1803. He disapproved "also of extending the grant beyond the present lord Lake's successor. He sen"sured the principle of annexing, of course, pensions to peerages for the mere purpose

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of sustaining the rank of the party. In a late review of the pension list which fell "to his lot, with others, in the discharge of

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a certain duty, he was sorry to find so many names of high rank on that list. "He thought that the honour of a monu

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