to give to this proceeding, on the part of Sir Francis Burdett, the character of faction. Of faction! What, is it factious to maintain, or to endeavour to maintain, the undeniable principles of that constitution, for the preservation of which we are called upon to spend our "last shilling, and to "shed our last drop of blood?" Not a day passes over our heads but we are reminded of the excellence of this constitution, and of the shame and infamy and misery which would speedily follow its destruction. Agreed! Perfectly agreed! And what does Sir Francis Burdett ask, but the practice of this very constitution; being, doubtless, of fixed opinion, that, if laws are not observed, they are, in fact, destroyed, as to all their good purposes, and that they insensibly become instruments of deception and oppression; that they cast forth darkness and misery, instead of light and happiness?It being evident, that, generally speaking, men pursue first their private interests, it follows, that, if men expend money for the purpose of obtaining seats in parliament, they have it in view to get a large profit by such expenditure, and will, of course, use the means of securing such profit. The kind of profit may differ. Some may prefer baubles to hard solid cash ; but, the effect, as to the nation, will be pretty nearly the same, in the end. And, this being the case, it is quite clear, that whoever wishes to see a corrupt House of Commons, will surely be an advocate for expensive elections.

One thing surprized me not a little, and that was, that the Whigs, the famous advocates for PARLIAMENTARY REFORM, did not say one word, when Sir Francis called upon the whole House for advice. They had, formerly, prepared very elabo rate schemes for the causing of elections to be free; and, one would have expected it was not, certainly, too much to expect; that, when they saw, that there had been one free election in England, one really free. election, they would have found some means or other of edging in a word in approbation of it, even if they had abstain from saying any thing upon the subject of that advice which the Baronet was so anxious to obtain. But, alas! they had, in the fatal interim, been in power themselves. They themselves hád tasted of the honey; and, which was of more weight in the intinencing of their conduct, they hoped, though in vain I believe, to taste of it again. The newspapers, some of them, speak of Sir Francis Burdett's conduct as malicious, and take care, by hook or by crook, to bring in the name of Despard. Just as if the sense

and reason of the nation were to be silenced by the use of this name; just as if it had any thing to do with the High Bailiff of Westminster suing Sir Francis Burdett for the expenses of taking the election. And, as to malice, was there any malice in his asking the advice of the Honourable House? He did no more. If the House advised him to pay the demand; if they advised him to submit to be punished for having obeyed the king's command, in taking his seat, why there it was; he would have paid the money; for he made no complaint, and said that the payment was a matter of perfect indifference to him. I should suppose, that the Honourable House would have considered it as a compliment to its wisdom, to have its advice asked upon such a matter, particularly as Sir Francis stated, that it was purely from tenderness for the honour of the Honourable House, and from a fear of incurring their displeasure, that he had asked their advice. But, there are some men, whom nothing will please. Censure them, and they call you abusive; pay a compliment to their feelings, and they say you are malicious. POPULATION. In another part of this sheet will be found a Post Script from Mr. Arthur Young, from which I perceive, and with unfeigned sorrow, that that gentleman is very angry with me, who certainly never intended to give him any offence.Isaid, in the passage, to which he alludes (see page 709 of this volume), that I knew of no return to the population act, which could enable Mr. Young to state what was the population of England and Wales in the year 1720. It appears, from what he now says, that there was a calculation made upon the subject, by a MR. RICKMAN, who was appointed to collect and make an abstract of the parochial returns; and it is, it seems, upon this calculation that Mr. Young makes his statement. The act required, that the several rectors, vicars, curates, &c. &c. should make out returns, 1st, of the number of inhabited houses and families, and uninhabited houses; 2d, of the total number of persons, exclusive of soldiers and sailors; 2rd, of the number of persons emploved in trade, manufactures, or handicraft; 4th, of the number of baptisms and burials, at stated periods, from 1700 to 1800; and 5th, of the number of marriages in each year,· from 1754 downwards to 1800. From these returns Mr. Rickman made up what is called the Population ab stract; but, the abstract contained the answers to the first, second, and third questions only. There has since, it appears, been something else made out by Mr. Rickman,

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by the farmers themselves; and that labouring man, who oused to drink beer, has now, by the excise-laws, Been driven to the well or the pump. It is, in almost all cases, the many who make the consumption as well as the creation of things. To be sure we now see some huge breweries, which have arisen out of the Walpolian system (for ever accursed!); but we do not con sider, that a milion of little breweries have been annihilated. Now you will not find a man, who lives by his daily labour, brew his own beer; formerly it was as rare to meet with one who did not. This is the great cause of a falling off in the quantity of malt made in England. There is not so much beer drunk by those who formerly drank beer. That the population has been increasing since the Revolution is probable; the long and bloody struggles, and the uncertainty of property, from about 1645 to 1680, must have greatly diminished the population of the counity; but, my arguments of the large churches, &c., apply to a former period, and were used merely for the purpose of shewing, that the land of England is capable of support. ing a much greater number of persons than it now has to support.A correspondent (I.T.), whose letter will be found in another part of this sheet, brings me back, for a moment to the corn and sugar question. I think I know the hand-writing; and, if I am right in that respect, I look upon this letter as no bad proof of my having, in my endeavours as to this matter, been success. ful; for, the writer tells me, that I have convinced him, and I know him to be a truly independent man; a man who has no particular interests at stake, on the one side or on the other; a man accustomed to reason accurately, and to decide with great deliberation and care; the man, of all men whom I know in the world, whose judgment I would wish, upon any question whatever, to have upon my side; because I know, that, to great talents and wisdom, he joins an impartiality which no consideration can warp.1, as well as he, could have wished, and, indeed, now wish, to see the intended bill merely a bill of permission Re strictions upon trade are, ninety-nine times out of a hundred, impolitic, and not unfre quently unjust; and. I am of opinion, that it would be much better for the West-India Planters now to open a conipetition to them, and leave their sugar (unloaded with previous duties) to vie with the barley. With great deference to I. T, I must, however, say, that I think it carrying the notion of an is post facto law a little too far, to apply it to a case like this. Particular interests must

1712 1.00 ....

upon the answers to the 4th and 5th questions; but, I must see those answers before I can form any judgment as to the probability of Mr. Rickman's being able to make a calculation upon them. I should think, from what I have seen and what I have heard, that it is quite impossible to obtain, except in some cases, correct answers to the fourth and fifth questions; and, if there had not been some very great difficulty attend ing it, how comes it that Mr. Rickman did not include those answers in his general abstract? If the parish books had been kept in such a way as to enable the Rector, &c. to make out the answers at all, those answers could have been made out much sooner than the auswers to the former questions. But, my opinion is, that the ans wers to the 4th and 5th questions could not be made out, except in the way of guess, for any period farther back than forty or fifty years. Then comes the calculation; and though the principle of that calculation may be fatt enough, yet, when we consider, how those religious sects have gradually diminishett, who neither buried nor baptised in the Church of England, it is evident that the materials for such a calculation must be very defective. In short, I look upon such a calculation to prove nothing, especially when I consider the motive by which the employers of Mr. Rickman were actuated in the whole of the undertaking. My decayed towns and villages; my large churches and handfuls of parishioners; and my down-sides, once cultivated with such ¿ surprizing labour and pains, and now, to the amount of millions of acres, lying uncultivated; all these arguments, Mr. Young says, have been long ago refuted by him. I should, without the least affectation, be Imuch obliged to him for a reference to the particular part of his useful works, where the refutation is to be found; for, at present, I am thoroughly convinced, that this country was once much more populous than it now is. How is it possible to account for the existence of a church capable of containing a thousand people, in a place where the habitations now consist of a farm house or two and a few miserable huts, scarcely fit for men to dwell in? How is it possible to account for this in any other way than that of a decrease in the population?I still am of opinion, however, that the question of population had nothing at all to do with that of corn and sugar; for, if it did appear, that, in proportion to the population, more malt was made formerly than is now made, what would be the evident cause? why, that wine is now drunk even

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be made to give way to the general good. I There can be no doubt that the particular interests of the distillers would suffer from the stoppage of their trade, in times of scarcity, but, such a measure would certainly be proper, and could not, reasonably, be complained of as an ex post facto law. There are, I hear, petitions coming forward in favour of the intended measure; so that the House will find the subject ready discussed to their hands. This premature discussion is, however, the work of the barleygrowers. They began it, and they have, I think, deprived themselves of that chance of success, which want of time for thought would have given them. Nothing, surely, was ever more indecent than the opposition which they commenced. The report was not printed until ten days after they began to call meetings and to condemn the measure. It was, therefore, impossible for them to be acquainted with the evidence, upon which the committee had made its report to the House; and yet they, in terms the most unqualified, set up a clamorous condenination. There has been, I perceive, a meeting of Yeomen farmers, at Winchester, copsisting, certainly, of very respectable men, as far as the list of names at the bottom of the advertisement, enables me to judge; but, it is with no small satisfaction that. I understand, that Sir Henry Mildmay was act present. It is no derogation from his character to say, that I believe him to have spoken against the measure, without full consideration; and, I shall be very glad to see, that time has altered his opinion, and has induced him to retract an error, into which any man might have fallen. As to his colleague, what he may happen to do is, with me at least, a matter of very little importance.The meeting at Winchester was so meagrely attended as to excite very little interest. It was, in all probability, sug. gested by some businessless attorney, on the preceding market-day, as the means of insuring to himself, for once in his life-time, a good hearty dinner of roast-beef and plumb-pudding, at which, in compensation for his vigils, he might half burst himself with the juice of the grape, in drinking suc cess to the consumption of barleg. Great care was taken (by officious and faithful brother Scut, I suppose) to mention the dianer in calling the meeting, and, as the most moving piece of eloquence, this mention was reserved for the close. The truth is, that this meeting, like most others of the kind, appears to have been a mere apology for a dinner, and, if I am reminded, that the gentlemen, attending it, are at all times

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able to have a great market dinner, I answer, that though they, doubtless, are, quite able to bear the expense, yet, they are not always able to find out an excuse for it that will satisfy them. selves, and, which is of infinitely greater importance, that will satisfy their wives, who are very much addicted to reckon such expenses as so much subtracted from those enjoyments, of which they are justly enti-· tled to a share.As a farmer's frolic, therefore; as a little truantship from the dominion of the petticoat, the thing was, perhaps, excuseable, and brother Scut might have inerit in the invention; but, if be carried the jest so far as to patch up, from ten times borrowed resolutions, a manifesto against an intended act of parliament, then he exposed his clients to the contempt of their more sober and sensible neighbours.

-Of this description are, I dare say, almost the whole of the meetings we have read of, in the several counties. It is the large farmers only who assemble; large farmers do not work themselves; they love a jovial dinner; they keep brave horses to ride; and a day of frolic beyond the ani madversion of the petticoat, is a day snatched from fate. This is the light, in which I, were I a member of parliament, should view these manifestoes. I should trace them to their first causes; I should see the attorney, or his clerk, copying them from old newspapers; and, of course, should be very careful how I regarded them as containing the real sentiments of even th the persons by whom they were subscribed.


MR. PALMER. After much talking about, this gentleman's case is again before parliament; and it must give satisfaction to every lover of fair dealing to see that justice, or something like justice, is, at last, to be done him. The short view of his case is this: -He was the author of that excellent plan of conducting the post-office of the kingdom, which is admired by all those who have considered it, and the advantages of which to the nation have been immense, in all the ways, in which an establishment of this sort can be advantageous to a nation. --If his plan succeeded, he was to be remunerated accordingly, than which nothing could be more fair. The clear revenue of the post-office was, before, comparatively, a trifle. If it rose, in consequence of the adoption of his plan, to a certain amount, he was to receive a certain per centage upon that overplus, But, at the same time, it was agreed, that Mr. Palmer should be an officer in the post-office, under the postmaster general, and that he should assisti in carrying his plan into effect; for the filling

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me; I will turn you out of that office"whenever I please:" if this had been said to Mr Palmer; or, if he had thought that the agreement could possibly have been made to receive this construction, can any one ima gine that he would have communicated his invention to the government? Can any one believe, that a man would have thus em ployed his own talents and merits for the purpose of making himself one of the vilest dependents that ever existed upon the face of the earth-But, the House of Commons, in 1799, rejected this claim, and there is no new evidence, says Mr. Long, in sup port of it. Mr. Rose says, that the question was decided in the House, in 1799, by a majority of 112 to 28; and, that, if the House now grant the prayer of Mr. Palmer, it will shake its honour and character more "than any thing within his recollection." Good God! Let the House look to it then; for........ but, it is useless to proceed: the reader's recollection will fill up the chasm.

-This was Pitt's way. When once be had got the House to do any thing, be used to tell them that they were eternally blasted if they did not stick to it, and even followit up. I well remember how he used to call for votes upon the sole ground of their having already voted in the same spirit; and to tell them, almost in so many words, that they were a parcel of inconsistent fellows if they boggled at it for a single moment.--- But, Mr. Rose, this is another parliament. The walls are the same; the literal house is the same; but the figurative house is another, and I wish I could say a very different one. True, a House of Commons did reject the claim of Mr. Palmer; and a House of Commons did pass a bill of attainder against Russel and Sidney, but another House of Commons repealed that bill of attainder, and were not afraid of their honour and character being shaken by the act.It is clear; it wants no proof, no evidence to support the fact, that Mr. Palmer never could mean to make his hoped-for and expected reward de pend upon his continuance in office, or, in other words, upon the mere whim of the minister of the day, let him be who he might. Eesides, what was he to be in office for? Why, to assist in carrying his plan into execution; to assist in making the plan suc ceed. Well, then, the plan, did succeed; the public are, and long have been, iu pos session of its immense benefits; so that there appears to be not the shadow of an objection to the claim of the percentage, and this, as far as I understand, is all that is intended to be granted.I wish the Pitts and the Longs and the Roses had been as

of which office he was to receive a salary.
Thus he began with the public. He
entered upon
his office, and the post-office
revenue speedily attained the amount which
gave him a per centage. But, sometime pre-
vious to the year 1799, he was dismissed
from his office. on account of alledged mis-
behaviour; and, upon demanding his per-
centage, was told, that he had failed in that
part of his bargain, which obliged him to
assist in carrying his plan into execution;
that, therefore, the bargain became void;
that he had no claim to the percentage; and
that, of course, he had only to accept of
what the minister (who had dismissed him)
chose to give him. Such was the decision
of Pitt; and I need hardly say, that it was
also the decision of one of his Houses of
Commons. -The claim has now been re-
vived. Mr. George Rose is opposed to
this intended waste of the public money!
And he and his right trusty and well-be-
loved Mr. Charles Long (Mr. Thomas Steele
is not in the House now, I believe,)
reprobate the claim; insist, that the salary
and percentage were to be inseparable; and,
of course, that Mr. Palmer could claim no
percentage, useless he kept his office.―――I
say that such was not the bargain; and the
proof is this, that Mr. Palmer was certainly
in his senses, and that no man in his senses
would voluntarily have made a bargain,
which could be binding only upon himself.
He was to have a great reward for a great
public service; but, as it was in the absolute
power of the other contracting party to dis-
miss him at any moment, it is evident, that,
if the claim to the percentage was to cease
along with the possession of the office, he
could not have a moment's security for his
reward. It is an abuse of words to call
such a thing a bargain; and though a sharp
lawyer might get a man to set his hand to it,
that must be a villainous court of equity, in
which it would not be overset. Mr. Pal-
mer might misbehave himself in his office,
though I do not believe he did, and I think
his dismission is no bad presumptive proof
of it. But, we all know how many ways
there are, in which a man may offend a mi-
nister or a minister's jackall; and we all know,
that if such be the case, he is pretty sure to
be dismissed fromany office that he may hold,
during that minister's pleasure, Is it, therefore,
probable, that, Mr. Palmer, or any other
man with an understanding above that of au
oyster or periwinkle, would have made the
bargain here spoken of? If Pitt had said to
hini in plain terms: "You shall have so

much money for your invention, while
you continue in such an office; but, mark

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more extravagant than the demand of twenty guineas for the half of an ox. Mr.Palmer asks for no more than his due, agreebly to the undenied terms of what he says is contract, Disprove the contract, and he entitled to nothing; but, if the contrac be recognised, the demand cannot be extryagant. There is, too, in the present case, this peculiar circumstance, that you cknowledge to have gained by the contrac; and, that it is only his share of the gains that Mr. Palmer demands. Had the nation lost by the contract; or, had the gain been matter of doubt, there might have been some room for shuffle. It would have been disgraceful, indeed; it would have been abhorrent from the character of Englishinen, amongst whom the sacredness of pecuniary engagements is inculcated in the common and emphatical phrase: a bargain is a bargain." Still, however, there would have been room for some men to shuffle; but, in the present case, I am almost ready to say, that I would defy an American to find out a pretext for shuffling..


Botley, 19th May, 1809.

stout in their resistance of other claims. There are £20,000 gone to Dr. Jenner, aud! for what, let the people of Ringwood say., There have been, I believe, a bundred thousand pounds granted to the negro civilizers of Sierra Leone; and, away goes the scheme in smoke. But here is a scheme which was sensible and practicable. It has been tried; it has succeeded its benefits have been enjoyed for a series of years; they are still enjoyed, and will be enjoyed for ages to come. Here would be a fit object for national liberality; but, Mr. Palmer asks for none; he only asks for his own; he merely demands that which is unjustly detained from him; and, if he is to receive no redress from the parliament, from whom is he to receive it, and who will ever trust the nation again? It is odd enough, that, when sinecure places are the topic, the persons who oppose this claim are amongst the foremost to talk of the sacredness of national bargains. Never mind the amount, say they, the place has been granted, and the nation must abide by the grant. Tell them of the enormous amount of the Marquis of Buckingham's place: no matter, say they, he has the place, and he must receive the revenue of it, be it what it may. Two years of that place is worth all Mr. Palmer's claim for ten years. The fact is, I dare say, that they found Mr. Palmer what they call, in in their Whitehall slang, an intractable man. The man had merit; he could not help knowing that; and he was incapable of truckling to pompous ignorance. This, I'll engage, was his only sin; but, it was a thumper; it was a sin never to be forgiven. It is from such causes that the public affairs are so frequently mismanaged. To be capable of managing them argues the possession of talents and spirit; and who, that possesses talents and spirit, will quietly submit to the control of that stupidity and arrogance, which will frequently bear sway where the qualifications for office are .... such as I need not describe.

Mr. Bankes, who, it appears, opposes this claim, did not, any more than Mr. Rose or Mr. Long or Mr. Sturges, oppose the vote of 40,000l. to pay the debts of Pitt. Nay, no one opposed it, though, if Sir Francis Burdett had been in the House, I trust, he would have opposed it. Was that forty thousand pounds as well merited as the 60,000l. now to be paid to Mr. Palmer? There is not a just man in the kingdom but will answer, › NO. This, Mr. Bankes calls an extravagant demand; but, it is not the mere amount of any demand that makes it extravagant. The demand of a guinea for a pound of beef is



SIR.-In your observations on Mr. Coke's speech to the Norfolk meeting you have this passage." Where did Mr. Young. "learn that the number was 5,565,000 in "1720? Not "by the return to the act," 66 or, at least, I never saw or heard of "such return. I am of opinion, that he "has now spoken from no better authority


than that of Gregory King, who, indeed was so minute and accurate a gentleman "that he included in his estimate the "number of rabbits in England and "Wales."-Now, Mr. Cobbett, what right could you have to accuse me of so offensive a want of respect to the committee as to state a matter of information as derived from specific authority, which, so far from having foundation, was built only on the vague guesses of a political speculator? Sir, I did not merit this injurious supposition. You have no occasion to go back to Gregory King, because, if you will put on your spectacles when you next examine the population report on the return to the 41st of the King, you will find a table of progressive state of population from 1700 to 1801. But if you knew of this document and rejected it, I leave you to settle that matter with Mr. Rickman; I certainly accept his authority in decided preference to your cases to prove our depopulation; your ruined towns your large churches-your marks of the plough your down sides


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