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dom of Ireland, be permitted to be export of men to the present government; their ed directly from the said kingdom, in Bri. affections had been alienated; he wished tish ships navigated according to law, to to recall them by indulgent behaviour. be imported into any of the British plan- He hated the Romish religion for its pertations, or to any of the settlements be- secuting spirit; but he would not on that longing to Great Britain on the coast of account wish to be a persecutor. Africa; wool and woollen manufactures Lord North declared he would with all only excepted.”
his heart concur in any measure that could Mr. Pelham professed himself a well. tend to answer so desirable an end; but it wisher to Ireland; and said, that no man was not their province; it was the province had a greater respect for that kingdom of the parliament of Ireland: the laws than he had; he was not, however, without which were so severe against the Roman his doubts, that the present measure would Catholics had originated there, and redress be highly detrimental to the manufactures of domestic grievances should of right ori. of this country; the taxes in Ireland being ginate likewise from them. He was of low, and labour cheap, the Irish would be opinion, that the Irish parliament would able to undersell us, and thereby ruin see where the grievance lay, and redress several of our trading towns.
it, for there was not any where a people of Lord Beauchamp begged leave to set more liberal sentiments than the Irish. the hon, gentleman right. The taxes in The penal laws of Ireland were the conseIreland were many and high; and, pro- quence of apprehension, which, however portionably to the means of paying them, groundless, always adopted the most cruel considerably greater than in England. and severe policy. The Irish complained, Some gentlemen who had travelled into and complained with justice. Leaving to Ireland, had, from the opulence of its me- the candour of their own parliament to tropolis, and the unbounded hospitality of grant such indulgence to the Roman Cathe people of fashion, formed very unjust tholics as their loyalty deserves : he reideas of the real state of the kingdom: it quested the House would agree to that was reduced by oppressive laws to a which was in their power, and properly in wretched situation; their loyalty was, their province: to relax the trade laws however, superior to every selfish consi- would benefit the Irish, and ultimately deration; they saw nothing but our danger; enrich ourselves ; embarked in the same and though our acts had banished into fo- cause with us, they could not be called reign countries numbers of their brethren, our rivals in trade, but their rivals were and left them in a miserable state, still our rivals. The exception of woollen they were willing to strain every nerve to cloths he would say nothing to: it might serve us in the moment of distress : a not, perhaps, be just; but it was a point braver, more generous, and more loyal given up by the Irish, and confirmed by people was not to be found. He flattered an ancient compact; if it should be found himself, therefore, that they would be in the course of the proceedings that any treated by the House according to their other exceptions were necessary, the high deserts.
House no doubt would make them.' Upon Sir Thomas Egerton was of opinion, the whole, the motion should meet his that this kingdom would suffer by its in- hearty concurrence. dulgence in this point; the manufactures The question was carried nem. con. of Lancashire, in particular, would be Earl Nugent then moved, “ That all ruined; and that county alone would, as goods, wares, and merchandize, being the he was informed, lose 100,000l. per annum produce of any of the British plantations, in the article of checks only, if the mea- or of any of the settlements belonging to sure now proposed should pass into a law. Great Britain, on the coast of Africa, be
Mr. T. Townshend expressed his warm permitted to be exported from thence into approbation of the motion. He was happy the said kingdom of Ireland, indico and to see the mist of prejudice begin to dis- tobacco only excepted.” He next moved, perse, and would be happy to give the “That the Acts prohibiting the exportameasure a broader bottom: though as tion of glass be repealed : also, That the stedfast a Protestant as any gentleman in duties on the importation of cotton yarn the House, he declared he should be glad manufactured in Ireland, be no longer to see some means adopted to grant such paid." indulgencies to the Roman Catholics of Mr. Burke then moved, “ That all sai] Ireland, as might attach that great body cloth and cordage, of the manufacture of
Ireland, be permitted to be imported from / tion, begged the House to proceed on so Ireland into Great Britain, free of duty." | interesting a matter with the utmost cauThe above Resolutions were agreed to by tion. He thought it very imprudent to the Committee.
proceed in it at this late season of the year,
when the House was very thin, and the April 8. Lord Midleton brought up kingdom could not be enough advertised the report of the Committee. The first of their proceedings. If these proposiand second Resolutions were ordered to tions were introduced merely to try the be recommitted; the other three were pulse of the nation, and to lie over to the agreed to by the House.
next session, he should be most agreeable
to that procedure, because thereby every April 9. Lord Midleton reported from one would have leisure to consider, and the the Committee to whom the first and House would be full to discuss the matter. second Resolutions were recommitted, the Mr. Connolly said, though an Irishman, Resolutions which the committee had di- and much of his property lay in Ireland, rected him to report to the House ; read,
it was not from mere local considerations and are as followeth, viz.
that he lent his hand to the work: he was “ That all goods, wares, and merchan- convinced that the advantages proposed dize, being the produce or manufacture of by the Bills, for the Irish, would turn out in the kingdom of Ireland, or commodities the end to the benefit of Great Britain. of the growth, produce, or manufacture of As a member of the British empire, he did Great Britain, legally imported into Ire- not deem it a matter of sufficient weight to land, or foreign certificate goods legally prevent the Bills from passing into a law, imported from Great Britain into Ireland, that a part of the kingdom might be a little be permitted to be exported directly from injured, provided the general good of the the said kingdom, in British ships navi- whole was promoted by it. gated according to law, to be imported Mr. Jenkinson said, there would be good into any of the British plantations, or to time, by the intervention of the holidays, any of the settlements belonging to Great to give the nation leisure to consider and Britain on the coast of Africa, wool and start their objections to it. woollen manufactures only excepted.
Lord North was of the same opinion ; “ That all goods, wares, and merchan- but hoped that no new propositions would dize, being the produce of any of the Bri- be grafied upon it, but that it would pass tish plantations, or any of the settlements in its present form. belonging to Great Britain on the coast of Sir Cecil Wray then declared, that as Africa, be permitted to be exported from the fiat of the noble lord had determined thence into the said kingdom of Ireland, it to pass this session, he would take a detobacco only excepted."
cided part in the business, and steadily opMr. Burke moved, that the first Resolu- pose it; and in this he hoped to be as. tion be recommitted. The House resolved sisted by every independent member. itself immediately into a committee on the The Resolutions being agreed to, Bills first Resolution. Mr. Burke's amendment were ordered to be brought in thereon.* was agreed to; and the House being resumed, lord Midleton reported the Re- *" A strong opposition was forming against solution as follows:
the Irish Bills, which were founded upon the “ Resolved, That all goods, wares, and Resolutions already stated. A general alarm merchandize, being the produce or manu
was spread, through most of the trading and facture of the kingdom of Ireland, wool manufacturing parts of the kingdom. They
considered the admittance of Ireland to any and woollen manufactures only excepted, participation in trade, as not only destructive or commodities of the growth, produce, or in the most ruinous degree of their property, manufacture of Great Britain, legally im- but as being equally subversive of their rights. ported into Ireland, or foreign certificate They were as little disposed to consent that the goods legally imported from Great Britain people of Ireland should cultivate their own into Ireland, be permitted to be exported manufactures, and dispose of their native comdirectly from the said kingdom in British modities at the proper foreign markets, as they ships navigated according to law, to be im- participation. In a word, a foreign invasion
were to admit them to any limited degree of ported into any of the British plantations, could scarcely have excited a greater alarm. pr to any of the settlements belonging to
It ran like an infection every wbere, and took Great Britain on the coast of Africa."
such absolute possession of the mind, that the Sir Cecil Wray, on the second Resolu- recent, and immediately sore-felt example of May 4. A Petition being presented from in America, or the British settlements on the manufacturers of Somersetshire against the coast of Africa, into the kingdom of the Bill for permitting the importation of Ireland, sail-cloth from Ireland,
Sir Cecil Wray took a general review of Mr. Burke observed, that it was he the commercial state of Ireland, and exwho through mistake had moved for leave pressed his hearty wishes, that the British to bring in the Bill, though, upon enquiry, parliament might render her every assishe had since discovered, that such a law tance in its power, without infringing on was already in being. If the Bill would the trade of Great Britain. He said he be productive of the consequences stated had no objection to admit of Ireland's in the Petition, it was a little extraordinary participating equally with us of the bethe petitioners forgot to complain when nefits of a free trade, provided she bore they were hurt; and now felt so strongly, an equal share of our national burthens ; when there was not even a possibility of but that was not the case, Ireland was sustaining any injury. From this he in- computed to contain two million of souls, ferred, that the jealousy entertained of the and they were taxed at one million; 10s. other Irish Bills was equally ill-founded, each upon an average; that Great Britain and only originated in gross prejudice, or having six million of souls, and her taxes the selfish views of a few interested in- being twelve million, each inhabitant was dividuals.
taxed 40s. an astonishing difference, and The Petition was ordered to lie on the such as could not justify the introduction table.
of the Bills now depending. He well
knew the grievances of the former counMay 6. The order of the day for the try, and lamented them; among which second reading of the Bill “ to permit were the Irish pension list, the sinecure the Importation of sail cloth and cordage offices, the Roman Catholic bills, the abof the manufacture of Ireland, into this sentees, and various others; and assured kingdom, duty free,” being read,
the House he would gladly join in redressSir Cecil Wray moved, that it be read a ing them; but the present business was of second time this day three months, which too serious and complicated a nature to be was agreed to.
hurried through at the latter end of a On the motion for the second reading session ; that, in his opinion, the trade of of the Bill “ to permit the importation of Ireland should be referred to a committee, certain goods from the British plantations who should minutely investigate it, and
report it to the House, who might then America, with respect to any general applica- take the whole into consideration, and ention of causes to effects, was totally forgotten. deavour to relieve them. As to a rebellion The city of London preserved the dignity of so
in Ireland, in consequence of a non-comgreat and majestic ari emporium, and continued uninfluenced by common opinion, and pliance with the present request, he had unmoved by popular clamour. The Easter
no idea of it; the people at large were not recess afforded time and opportunity for public interested in the event; a few merchants meetings, for the preparation of petitions, and of Cork, Dublin, &c. might; but the opuof instructions to representatives, wbich were lent were not the men for rebellion; they accordiugly brought up in considerable num- were the poor and indigent; if America bers at the meeting of parliament. A curious had been rich, she would never have been circumstance occurred upon this occasion, in rebellion ; the rich only are calculated which afforded a striking instance of the eager- for slaves. ness with which ill-founded popular apprehen- not answer but a rebellion might happen
If these Bills passed, he would sions, may, in certain cases, be received and communicated. A motion had been made, and
in England, because our manufacturers a Bill accordingly brought in, for the importa- would be out of employ; and as a further tion of sail-cloth from Ireland. This was consideration, a part of our sea nursery however founded totally in error, and Mr. would be destroyed by the passing of these Burke, who brought it iu afterwards, discovered Bills. On the whole, sir Cecil was of opithat the liberty of importing Irish sail-cloth nion, that the present measure was brought was already established, by a positive law of into the House at a very improper time, long standing. Yet this Bill was as violently when the minds of men were taken up opposed by petitions from different parts of the kingdom, and as strongly charged with the with matters of the most singular immost ruinous consequences, as any of the other portance; and, besides, at the conclusion four Bills its companions, which were all of the session. A matter of such magnifounded upon new ground.” Annual Register. tude, as overthrowing the whole system of our trade laws, was not of light considera- of Glasgow, against the charge of having tion; and ought not to be hurried on in a entertained diabolical motives. He read sudden and indecent manner, Besides, the petition, and spoke highly in favour of the petitions on the table deserved par- the liberality, and philanthropy of the ticular attention; the petitioners were men Glasgow merchants, at the same time sayof a description entitled to respect, and a ing, they so far gave preference to their patient hearing; and he would appeal to own, before any foreign country, that they the candour of gentlemen on every side of could not see its interests violated, as they the House, whether now, on the 6th of imagined, without exerting their endeaMay, was a proper time to enter into so vours to prevent it. If the Bills passed laborious and important an investigation into a law, the city of Glasgow would in a He professed the best disposition towards particular manner, be affected. They had, the whole Irish nation ; said, he was ready in common with the rest of Scotland, emto concur, at any time, in whatever might barked in the same bottom with England, promote the true interest of that country; and become liable to a proportion of the and if the amendment which he meant to national debt, for the sake of enjoying an propose should meet the sentiments of the equality of commerce. On that foundaHouse, he would move for a committee, tion they had laid out immense sums of before the House rose, to take into consi- money in the cultivation of the sugar-trade; deration, early in the next session, the re- they had considered it as an hereditary strictive laws on the trade of Ireland ; and right, depending on the security of the do all in his power to forward the interests acts in their favour; and it was, in a great of that country, where they did not imme- degree, their only property and wealth. diately interfere with those of England. A great part of their annual returns flowed He concluded by moving, “ That the Bill from Ireland, and they would be most mabe read a second time upon this day three terially injured if that kingdom should months.”
participate the trade with them. He conSir Thomas Egerton seconded the' mo- sidered the present Bills as improper on tion, He said the loss to Manchester, in another account. By their passing, they checks only, if these Bills passed, would would stand in the way of an Union, which be 100,0001. annually; he begged the be considered as the only solid basis of House would at least hear counsel for the equality that could be built upon. He different petitioning towns, before they therefore hoped the House would agree passed them; and agreed in recommend to the amendment. ing the Irish trade to be referred to a Viscount Midleton said, he had heard committee, of which he would readily that the people of Manchester and Livermake one, and give it all the attention and pool had determined, nothwithstanding assistance in his power.
their late exertions, to be no longer loyal Mr. T. Townshend said, the proposition if these Bills should pass.
was sensiof going into a committee, was little ble that these towns, as well as Glasgow, better than a direct negative. It held out were experienced in rebellion so abunno security, but a vague promise to move dantly, that the transition would be an ob. a committee, which committee would ject of easy accomplishment, and the appoint another committee. On these world would entertain little surprize if grounds, he entirely disapproved of the they threw aside their new-fangled opi. Amendment.
nion. He could not enough wonder, that Earl Nugent particularly adverted to the hon. gentleman should, of all men, the motives which had actuated the peti- | plead the hereditary right of the city of tioners against the Bills, and in a peculiar Glasgow to the commerce of the English, manner he spoke to the conduct of the on the principle of having taken upon city of Glasgow, who had, with the most themselves a proportion of the national illiberal sentiments, prayed that neither debt. He thought a gentleman of that the present, nor any future advantage country ought to have been silent upon should be granted to Ireland, that might, that head. in the least degree, operate to the disad- Lord North was of opinion, that as the vantage of Britain. He could not, he expectations of the Irish were raised from said, bestow upon this conduct a term what the House had already done, it would vile enough; it was mean, unmanly, un. be unwise to protract the business to angenerous, despicable, and even diabolical. other session. The gentlemen who op
Sir Adam Ferguson defended the city posed the Bill seemed all to agree in one point, that something ought to be done for ment and loyalty to the government of their relief, though they differed about the this country. Such had been her connature and extent of what ought to be duct, and her reward had been restriction done. Ile saw no reason, however, why and bondage of the most cruel nature. the present Bill should not pass, since the He did not mean, he said, by describing House might, notwithstanding, appoint a her situation, to engage the humanity of committee to enquire into the state of the the House in her favour : he knew very trade, that from their report a plan might well they were but poor resources. The be adopted. He did not see the mighty people of Ireland would not accept of "fadifficulty that was said to exist, in calcu. vours flowing from the humanity of the lating the difference necessarily to arise in House. They called for justice, not for the annual imports, by the effect of the pity. They requested Britain to be wise, Bill before the House. It would create not to be generous ; to provide for her small difference, comparatively speaking, own good, and secure her own interest, in the revenue, since the diminution in the sensible that wisdom and prudence would imports of one place would give an addi- dictate, that to accomplish these, a tion to those of another, as the difference contrary conduct towards them was neof duty on the enumerated articles was cessary. very trifling. He held it as the duty of The hon. gentlemen who opposed the Britain to give Ireland a degree, at least, Bill, had drawn into collection the arguof recompence for the exertions she had ments and reasons they maintained to made, supposing we were not inclined, in exist against all the Bills, meaning, no policy, to give her relief from the restric. doubt, thereby to prejudice the House the tions she laboured under, and he hoped more by their aggregate effect. Though the House would agree to the present Bill, he detested this inequitable mode of proas a test of their intention and inclination ceeding, he would not evade the comto befriend her more substantially in future. bat even on that ground, nor wish to en
Mr. Burke * rose to answer the argu gage the House in favour of the Bills, if he ments of the hon. gentlemen who opposed could not, in the fullest manner, answer the Bill. The Billó before the House, he every objection they had brought to every said, were no more than restorations of part. The hon. gentleman who had what the wisdom of a British parliament moved the amendment, wished to reconhad, on a former occasion, thought proper cile the people of Ireland to delay, by to invest Ireland with. In the 12th of pledging the honour of parliament, that Charles 2, the Navigation Bills passed, something effectual should be done in extending to Ireland as well as England. their favour next session. He knew the A kind of left-handed policy had, however, temper of the Irish too well, to believe deprived her of the freedom she had en- that they would sit down satisfied with joyed under that Act, and she had such an assertion. They would conclude since remained under the most cruel, op. within themselves, depending on experipressive, and unnatural restriction. De- ence for their guide, that the promise of prived of every incentive to industry, and something to be done next session, would shut out from every passage to wealth, she alone produce the repetition of a promise had inwardly lamented, but she had never for the session following: and promise, complained of her condition. She had repetition, and promise, from session to gone the most forward lengths in serving session, would be the only benefit they the interests, and in defending the rights would receive. He did not conclude, of Great Britain. She had assisted in that the denial of what even justice deconquests, from which she was to gain no manded of us in their favour, would proadvantage, and emptied her treasury, and duce rebellion and disturbance in that desolated her land, to prove her attach- country; their loyalty and zeal was supe
rior to complaint; they might despair, * “Mr. Burke was the great and powerful but they would not resist. Other places, supporter of the Bills in point of debate. His experienced in rebellion, had determined, situation was rather singular, and undoubtedly it seems, to enter or not to enter into it
, embarrassing. For he received his seat in parliament, without expence, from the free according as these Bills were determined'; votes and predilection of the citizens of Bristol but Ireland regarded more the welfare of in bis favour, and his constituents now thought the empire at large than the interest of their interests materially affected by the Bills itself in particular. They were patient in question.” Annual Register.
and loyal, and therefore, he supposed, they