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of the LAw, and more particularly of the Court of CHANCERY. No sooner was that announcement made than in the profession to which I formerly had the honour of belonging, as well as in the minds of the public, the most eager expectations were awakened. Week after week, and month after month, passed away, but those expectations were not gratified. . At length, and after a long delay, a bill was produced by my noble and learned friend, which I have too great a respect for his understanding, to suppose could be his own production. It must, I think, have been forced upon him by some other person, and hastily and unadvisedly adopted by him. I said this measure was produced; yes, it appeared for a moment, and it fell from my noble and learned friend’s arms, still-born, on your Lordship's table. The measure met with no support in this House; it met with no support from any party, or any section or fragment of any party, out of it. Neither Whig nor Tory, Radical nor Conservative, defended it; it met with no support from any portion of the public press, whether in the pay of government, or espousing the party in opposition; no single voice in any quarter has been raised in its favour. Even the noble Lords who usually support the government, appear by anticipation to have condemned it; for a more scanty attendance, considering the importance of the question, never has, I think, occurred during the present session of Parliament. I pass therefore over this measure—Requiescat in pace ; I will not disturb its ashes.”—Lord Lyndhurst's Speech, p. 6. That our present ministers, whose whole lives have been a series of inconsistency, amounting in some instances to apostacy, should break their own promises, and abandon their own pledges, can now surprise nobody, but we confess we were not prepared to see the Speech from the throne made the vehicle of clap-trap rodomontades, and ‘the first and most sacred duty of a sovereign' introduced as the prologue to an empty bubble. 6. There was another instance in which the subserviency of the ministers to the dictation of its domineering followers was even still more marked—the Bill for the Registration of Voters, introduced and abandoned under the following circumstances:— “There is a third measure to which I beg for a moment to call your Lordships’ attention, the Bill for the Registration of Voters. What is the history of that bill? It originated in a committee appointed by government, and over which a member of the government presided. After long inquiry and deliberation, they came to certain conclusions upon the subject; in consequence of which a bill was prepared, under the direction of government, and was brought into the other House of Parliament. Upon the back of that bill I see the names of Lord John Russell, the Attorney-General, and the Solicitor-General. It was, therefore, emphatically a measure of the government, and, I must say, with one or two exceptions, an extremely good bill, and which ought to have been adopted, and passed into a law. But what, my Lords, was the result? The party to whom I have already referred opposed the progress
progress of it; they remodelled most of its regulations, and though it appears that some resistance was made to these changes, they were at length acquiesced in, and the bill thus changed was brought up to your Lordships' house. I really thought that we were entitled to the gratitude of the noble Wiscount for the course we thought it right to pursue. My noble friend (Lord Wharncliffe) applied his vigorous and manly mind to the consideration of this bill—he noticed the alterations which had been made in it, and determined at last to get rid of those interpolations, and to restore, as nearly as possible, the text of the noble Wiscount’s bill to its original purity. Were we not justified, then, in considering ourselves entitled to the thanks of the noble Wiscount, supporting as we did his own measure, prepared after so much consideration and care by the government? Instead of this, to our infinite surprise, we were again visited with one of those tempests of invective and of passion so familiar to the noble Wiscount, and so frequently directed against those noble Lords who sit on this side of the House. And what was the result? This bill of the government, their own measure, was abandoned by the noble Wiscount, who in a careless tone, stated across the table, that he should proceed no further with it, and for what reason? obviously because he dreaded the opposition and resentment of that class of his supporters by whom in the other House of Parliament the bill had been so completely altered and deformed.
“And this, my Lords, is a government! Was there ever, in the history of this country, a body of men who would have condescended to carry on the government under such circumstances! In this House they are utterly powerless—they can effect nothing. We on this side are obliged to perform the duties of the government for them. In the other House of Parliament, measures which they themselves have advised, and prepared, and brought forward, involving, as they tell us, the most important interests of the country, they without scruple tamely abandon at the dictation of any section of their supporters. Yet, thus disgraced and trampled upon, they still condescend to hold the reins of government.”—Speech of Lord Lyndhurst, p. 16.
If Lord Lyndhurst had never rendered any other service to his country than the exposure of the marvellous misconduct and still more marvellous effrontery of his Majesty's pretended ministers during the late session, he would have deserved the respect and gratitude of the public. That reward, however, he had already earned by the integrity, ability, and courage of his whole political life; by his learning on the bench, his wisdom in the cabinet, and his eloquence in the senate.
“Alternis aptum sermonibus, et populares . Vincentem strepitus, et natum rebus agendis.” And that nothing—even the lowest circumstance—might be wanting to the splendour of his position, as a gem is illustrated
by the foil, he is honoured, as far as they can confer honour, o the the conscience-soured taunts of Lord Holland and the too complimentary invectives of Mr. O'Connell. In conclusion; we would appeal to any man of ordinary common sense, whatever be his party—Conservative, Whig, or even Radical—whether that country can be in a natural and healthy state of political government where such persons as Lord Melbourne and Lord John Russell are allowed to hang on to the helm which they cannot guide—while Lord Grey and Lord Brougham are relegated into an obscure neutrality—and such men as Peel and Stanley, Wellington and Lyndhurst, backed by the vast preponderance of the property and intelligence of the empire, and even by the majority of the population and representatives of England, are unable to do more than mitigate the mischief produced by a fictitious and merely nominal government, itself the slave of every little knot of intriguers or agitators who choose in turns to dictate to it their own corrupt or crazy conditions of support? Where is all this to stop?—when is the public patience to be exhausted —where is the public alarm to rally and resist? If example could teach us, what lessons have not France and Spain and Portugal unrolled before us? If we are to profit by experience, do not the domestic events of the last few years suffice for our conviction ? In 1828 Catholic emancipation—our first fatal step, but perhaps inevitable, in the circumstances in which it was taken—was forced on a reluctant government by a parliamentary majority, by the apprehension of a civil conflict, and, above all, by the most solemn assurances of future and unalterable gratitude, tranquillity, and content. It was, however, an organic change of the constitution of 1688. hat followed—tranquillity and content? Alas! no—redoubled turbulence and still more audacious menace. This new constitution lasted barely four troublous years. Then was granted Parliamentary Reform, and granted in a larger measure than even the maddest or greediest innovator had ever dreamt of, in the hope, we are willing to believe on the part of at least some members of Lord Grey's Cabinet, of gorging the ravening imouth of revolution, and of stopping, by excess of concession, all further movement. That was an organic change in the recent constitution of 1828. This constitution has also lasted its four years, and now we are threatened with another organic change—which, if accomplished, could only lead, and at a still shorter interval, to another, and another, and another; till, at no great distance of time, Lord John Russell may have to repeat in good earnest his frivolous expostulation, ' Why, you would not have a revolution every year?' As As for ourselves, we see (except by divine Providence) but one immediate chance (and after all it would be but a chance) of national salvation—and that is, the restoration of Sir Robert Peel to the care of the public fortunes, with the co-operation of every other public man who is willing to say to the revolutionary movement, Ne plus ultra ! You shall come no farther!
NOTE on No, CIX.
We have to apologize to Captain Hay, of Hopes near Haddington, for not inserting sooner a letter which he addressed to us shortly after the appearance of our article on Osler's Life of Lord Exmouth. If the Captain's statements could have needed any corroboration, we should have also reprinted a letter of Mr. James Thomson of Liverpool, to the Editor of the Times, dated Sept. 26, 1835–three months before our article was published—in which, however, Mr. Osler's name was treated with uncalled-for disrespect.
“To the Editor of the Quarterly Review. ‘Sir, I was astonished in perusing, a few days ago, an article in the last number of the Quarterly Review, on the life of the late Admiral Lord Exmouth, to find a most grave charge brought against the officers of the Dutton East Indiaman, lost in Plymouth Sound in January, 1796, when o in a case of emergency as a transport for the conveyance of troops to the West Indies; and as their professional character and reputation are deeply wounded, I consider I am imperatively called upon, in justice to myself and brother officers, to give the following paragraph, which is said to be an extract from one of his Lordship's letters, and on which is founded the most direct and unequivocal contradiction :-" I saw the loss of the whole 500 or 600 was inevitable without somebody to direct them, for the last officer was pulled on shore as I reached the surf.” Now, so far from all the officers having quitted the ship when his Lordship (then Captain Edward Pellew) reached her, not one, I have the satisfaction to say, had been guilty of such a base and pusillanimous dereliction of duty; the chief, second, and third officers being three of the last five persons who quitted the wreck, and (indeed his Lordship admits, in his letter to Admiral Onslow, that he left on board the first and third mates, and boatswain, and that he was eased on shore by them), the fourth mate had been sent on shore with a message about the hawsers, by Mr. Mitchell, the first mate, and a brother of the late Admiral Sir Andrew Mitchell. That Sir Edward's intentions were highly raiseworthy, no one who duly appreciates intrepid bravery in the cause of É. will attempt to deny ; but in awarding the meed of praise to him. the merits of the officers of the ship ought not to be thrown in the shade, or their professional reputation so cruelly maligned, more especially as they were not only acquitted of all blame, but highly extolled for their judicious and successful arrangements for the saving of the lives of those committed to their care, the total absence of anything like confusion, and the exemplary discipline maintained under such trying circumstances. . When Sir Edward Pellew reached the wreck, the people were being landed by means of the jib traveller on a hawser, which had been stretched from the ship to the shore, and was then in full play; so that it is absurd to assert that he even suggested the means that were used to save the people, and .. alosu.
absurd to say he took the command, as the first officer never surrendered it, and continued to direct till the last. Where Sir Edward's exertions proved of the greatest service was in his inducing, by the waving of his hat and sword, and speaking through a trumpet, two boats to come alongside, which were lying off and afraid to approach nearer, to take out the sick women and children; and I cannot omit mentioning, that a young man from a merchant vessel (now Captain J. Coghlan, R.N.) was then first to come alongside, at least near enough to receive the women and children, who were thrown to him in blankets, and his conduct and intrepidity exceeded any praise which it is in the power of language to bestow. Sir Edward was sent on shore by the hawser, at his own entreaty, by myself and a quartermaster named Henderson, when there were seventeen or eighteen ople left on board, and at the time only the poop-hawser working (the ship aving parted a little abaft the mainmast), by which the remainder of the people were landed. When the number was reduced to five or six, viz. the first, second, and third officers, boatswain, and Henderson the quartermaster, Mr. Mitchell, the first, from previous severe indisposition, being in a very feeble state, was urged by all to permit himself to be slung to the hawser; but such was his sense of the duty that had devolved on him in the absence of his commander, who had landed the previous evening, also in a very weak state of health, that he sirmly resisted all our entreaties until I consented to go before him ; indeed, we were both so exhausted, that neither (alone) could have pulled the traveller on board; and that noble fellow Henderson, already mentioned, having confidence in his own strength, insisted on being the last, and was the last man who quitted the unfortunate Dutton. “After such a statement of facts, which I shall be ready, if called upon, to attest by the most solemn asseveration, you will not be surprised at my being anxious to rescue my own character and that of my brother officers from such unmerited obloquy as is contained in the following extract from Mr. Osler's work, which is as devoid of truth as it is cruel and ungenerous, particularly to those who, having paid the debt of nature, cannot vindicate themselves:—“The principal officers of the ship had abandoned their charge and got on shore just as he (Sir Edward Pellew) arrived on the beach, having urged them, without success, to return to their duty.' That the author had been grossly misled by those to whom he resorted for information I cannot for a moment doubt: nor can I but feel assured that he will gladly avail himself of the first opportunity that presents itself to render the amende honorable, and do justice to those he has traduced, by placing too implicit confidence in the correctness of those from whom he has collected his materials. The military officers behaved most nobly, and were handing the sick women and children from the orlop-deck, when the sea was pouring down on them; and when all the masts went, such was the order and discipline preserved, that out of about 500 people then on deck, not one was hurt, except two, who were drowned by getting entangled in the main rigging, when employed in cutting away the masts. I trust I have said enough to induce you to do an act of justice, by inserting any part of this communication in your next number, that you may consider essential for the cause of truth, and for correcting the error you were led into in your last. “I am, Sir, your most obedient servant, “WILLIAM HAY, “Late Commander of the East India Company's ship Charles Grant, and formerly Second Officer of the Dutton."