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Parliament...Col. McMahon... Orders in Council.
- refer to what has been said under the head of the United States.
6. The appointment of Col. M'Mahon to the office of paymaster of widows' pen⚫sions, has given rise to much discussion in the House of Commons. The office, being a sinecure, had been marked by a resolution of the House as fit to be abolished. It was therefore thought disrespectful to the House to fill up the vacancy. On voting the army estimates, in which the sum to be paid to Colonel M'Mahon was included, a debate took place, which ended in the rejection of that part of the estimate. This may be considered as a virtual abolition of the office. The numbers were, 115 to 112.
7. Some discussion has taken place in Parliament respecting the Orders in Council, and a farther discussion is expected. All we have heard or read on this subject confirms us in the view which we originally took of this measure, as in its principle most wise and expedient. In saying this, we do not mean to defend all the particular provisions by which the general principle was originally enforced. Such of those provisions, however, as were liable to just exception, were removed by the Order of May 1809, which converted the complex regulations of the Orders of Nov. 1807, into a simple prohibition of trading with the ports of the enemy. The main objection which we felt to this order, was its confining the prohibition within too narrow limits. It went no farther north than the river Ems, and included only the coasts of Holland, France, and the north of Italy. The reasons for exempting the Baltic from its operation we may be unable sufficiently to appreciate; but the policy of doing so has certainly always appeared to us to be dubious; the moral evils which have attached themselves to the Baltic trade forming, in our view, by no means the least powerful · objection.
But on what grounds would we rest the justice of such a prohibition? Simply on this, that it had become necessary to our defence. The war having assumed the character of a war on our commercial resources, which are the sinews of our strength, it became our duty to defend those resources. If an enemy attempt to ruin us by destroying our navy, the course we naturally and justly take is, if we can, to annihilate his. If, however, finding himself incapable of openly attacking our navy, he should say, I will undermine it; I will cut off the springs of your power; I will destroy your trade; 1 will allow it access in no way, by no route however circuitous, not only into my own CHRIST. OBSERY. No. 122.
dominions, but into any other country to which my power or influence can extend; nay, I will make the admission of a single bale of British goods (even into any neutral state) my warrant for treating that state as an enemy, and for destroying its independence; then we say, that the law of selfdefence immediately confers on us the right of saying in return, that our enemy's trade shall be annihilated. Why is it that nations have assumed the right of saying that neutrals shall not carry military or naval munitions to an enemy? Why, but because that law of nature to which we have referred, the law of self-defence, obviously requires it. And is not the present a case to which the same law is equally applicable? Shall we permit our enemy by his regulations, whether maritime or municipal, to aim a deadly blow at our commerce and manufactures, our marine and revenue, and to force neutrals to concur in his measures, without warding off the blow by any and by all the means which we possess: and why not, among others, by an universal interdict of commerce from bis ports? Is there any thing unjust in this?
Many men, however, will allow this course to be just, who yet deny its policy; who say, that we only give effect to the hostile decrees of our enemy, by thus acting; that we injure ourselves, and not him. Now we do not shrink from maintaining the direct converse of this proposition; from main. taining, that is to say, that had Great Britain, from the year 1807, adhered rigidly to her system of scaling up every hostile port, and of allowing neither ingress nor egress there, her condition would, probably, at this moment have been much more prosperous than it is and she would also have been preserved from many evils, which have arisen from the relaxation of that system. Our own resources, both domestic and colonial, would have been developed and almost indefinitely enlarged;-even our mercantile marine might have increased, while we should have deprived France of the means almost of raising a single seaman, or employing a single ship. The bogs of Ireland, and the waste lands of England, our American forests, and the sunn and paat fields of Hindostan, would in no long time have felt the influence of the continued prohibition. Hemp and flax, or at least substitutes for them, together with corn and timber, would in no long time have been either supplied from our own fields, or imported from our foreign possessions in British ships. Instead of employing hostile ships, manned by hostile
men, to bring us the productions or manufactures of hostile countries, we should have employed our own ships and our own seamen, and we should have given life to our .own manufactures, and to our own agriculture, foreign and domestic". But we can merely glance at this subject: our limits will not permit us tó enter upon it. This, how ever, we are anxious to repeat, that even if the advantages arising from the relaxation of our probibitory decrees, by means of licences, had been greater than its warmest advocates, have ever pretended, we should still have objected to it the moral evils by which these advantages are purchased. Much as we value commerce as one of the main sinews of our national strength, we should have no scruple to say, Perish that commerce if we can only retain it by the practice of frauds, forgeries, and perjuries. We may rely on it, that with nations, as well as individuals, the path of rectitude is the path of safety, as well as of honour; and if, trusting in the Divine protection, we reject all base and dishonourable means of advancing our interests, we shall in the end be no losers by our conduct.
We are happy to perceive that the flagrant immoralities attached to the licensing system, particularly in relation to our commerce with the Baltic, has begun to attract general notice. The town of Kingston upon, Hull has done itself honour by taking the lead in the reprobation of those immoralities, and of the system by which they are encouraged. On the 11th inst, a meeting of the merchants and ship-owners of that place was held, to consider the propriety of petitioning the House of Commons against granting licences to foreign vessels to trade between this country and those parts of Europe from which the British flag is excluded; and a series of resolutions was adopted as the basis of the petition, to the justice of every one of which we should readily subscribe. They resolve, among other things,
"That it is the firm persuasion of this Meeting, that this system of Licences is injurious to the trade and interests of the United Kingdom; is calculated to drain it of its resources-to pourish a race of seamen in the ports of the Continent-to enconrage a spirit of commercial enterprize in hostile states—and to deprive the British
The only plausible argument in favour of the licensing system respects the West India produce. But even here we should hope to prove, that the argument, viewed in all is, bearings, is not well founded.
Merchant of that prospect of reward, without which his labours must be rendered unavailing to the benefit of himself and of his country.
"That this Meeting is seriously impressed with a consciousness of the immoral effects, as well as the impolicy of Licences; that it contemplates, with feelings of shame and indignation, those frauds, collusions, and forgeries of documents, which are notoriously known to have arisen from the License system, as equally contrary to the dictates, of religion, and subversive of that high sense of honour, that probity and good faith, which have hitherto been the pre-eminent characteristics of British Merchants; and in the maintenance or decline of which, the welfare, and even the existence of the Constitution, is, in its judgment, deeply and inseparably involved.
"That, fully convinced of the truth and importance of these principles, this Meeting does agree to present a Petition to the Honourable the House of Commons, in Parliament assembled, praying, that they will take the subject of granting Licences to Foreign Vessels to trade between this country and ports from which its flag is excluded, into their serious consideration; and that they will apply such remedy to the evils now existing, as in their wisdom, may seem most expedient."
We should rejoice to witness the adoption of similar resolutions in every trading town in the kingdom. We must defer, however, for the present, what we had further to say on this subject. In the mean time, we will present our readers with an extract taken from an able speech of Mr. Hill, at the Hull Meeting, which contains some facts that will serve to illustrate the nature of this commerce. "The documents," he said, "which he held in his hand, would shew the extent in which persons engaging in this trade were guilty, with their eyes open, of perjury, or of subornation of perjury. The first document was the protest of a captain who sailed from Hull to Pillau without a cargo, in the autumn of 1810, which he adduced to shew the manner in which ships coming from England in ballast obtained admission into the ports of Prussia. The ship had come to Hull with a cargo from the Baltic, under the protection of a British convoy, had entered regularly at the customhouse, and delivered her cargo in the usual manner to the consignees, without any interruption whatever; but the captain and bis crew asserted in the protest (and confirmed their assertion by an oath administered with more than usual solemnity) that they had
had been captured, and sent into Hull; that the cargo was there condemned and the ship restored to them.'
"The second was the protest of a ship which sailed from Hull in the spring of 1811, with a cargo of colonial produce for Riga. In this it was stated that the ship had loaded at Charlestown in America, and various particulars of her pretended voyage were added; all which, though notoriously false and fictitious, were confirmed as before by the oath of the captain and crew.
"The third and last document was an act of the French Government, relative to the condemnation of a ship, which had been captured and carried into Holland in November 1810, with a cargo of colonial produce, from London for Memel. The captain and crew stoutly maintained, on their examinations in Holland, that they had loaded their cargo at Santa Cruz in the island of Teneriffe; but by several curious interrogatories put to them separately, their testimony was found so discordant as completely to expose the falsehood of their whole story.
"If these documents (which were fair specimens of those in general use, and not selected for this particular purpose) were not sufficient to set the question concerning the immorality of this trade completely and finally at rest, he could not see how it was possible to enter into any farther argument on the subject. Assuming the immorality as proved, he considered that alone as sufficient to induce every good man to wish for the annihilation of the whole system. however, had been said in defence of it, on the ground of policy and necessity. For his part, be was prepared to maintain, as a believer in the doctrines of Christianity, in the moral government of God, and the accountability of human actions, that our duty and our interest are much more closely allied than many are willing to suppose; and that our Creator has in general linked them indissolubly together; he was prepared to maintain, with a late distinguished British senator, that what is morally wrong can never be politically right.'
"But waving these general principles, he would proceed to examine the subject on the ground of alleged expediency."
Here, however, we cannot follow Mr. Hill, but must refer our readers to his speech in the “ Hull Advertiser " of the 15th inst. and though he has given an able view of the subject, we have no doubt that the arguments which he has adduced might be greatly strengthened by additional facts and considerations.
The health of his Majesty is said to continue in precisely the same state as it was when the parliamentary examination of the physicians last took place.
-Sir Evan Nepean has been appointed governor of Bombay.
Mr. Kirwan, one of the Catholic delegates, having been found guilty, under the Catholic Convention Act, of a violation of the law, in assembling as one of the delegates of the Catholic body; the rest of the trials were suspended, on the ground that the law having been thus declared, there was no doubt that the Catholic body would feel themselves to be bound by it.
A special commission having been appointed to try, on a charge of treason, a number of British seamen, who, after being taken prisoners, had entered into the French service, and were found in arms against their country in the Isle of France; the trials came on at the Surrey Sessions House during the present month. When seven convictions had taken place, and that on grounds which left no doubt whatever of the guilt of the parties, and of the equity of their condemnation; the Attorney General signified that the ends of justice had been fully answered, and that he should now stay farther proceedings, trusting that the example now given would operate powerfully throughout the whole mass of our naval and military force. The sentence of the law has not yet
The amount of our loss by the shipwrecks of men of war that had taken, place we stated in our last to be 1,400, when we should have stated it at near 2,000 seamen, Another frigate, the Manilla, has since been wrecked on the coast of Holland; but the whole of the crew, with the exception of six men, have been saved,
An attack was made, on the Neapolitan coast, on a convoy of the enemy, consisting of nine gun-boats and twenty merchant vessels laden with naval stores; and the ene"my's batteries on shore having been seized and dismantled by a party of troops, the whole were either destroyed or brought off.
The French frigate, La Pomone, of forty guns, has been captured in the Mediterra nean by his Majesty's ship Active. Captain Gordon lost a leg, and his first Lieutenant an arm; besides which, ten of our men were killed and sixteen wounded. An armed store ship, under the convoy of the Pomone, was also taken; another escaped,
A second French frigate, La Corceyre, has been taken in the same sea by his Majesty's ship Eagle. She had on board when
taken, 170 seamen and 130 soldiers, 30 tons of wheat, and a quantity of milita
Rev. John Smith, M. A. vicar of Bicester, Oxon. Master of the endowed Gram-' mar School of Dilhorne, vice Wolfe, resigned.
Rev. William Jackson, D. D. canon of Christ Church, and Regius Professor of Greek in the University of Oxford, Lord Bishop of Oxford.
Kev. John Leslie, D. D. dean of Cork, Lord Bishop of Dromore, vice Hall, deceased.
Rev. Henry George Liddle, Redmarshall R. Durham.
Rev. Thomas Peyton Slapp, Bracon-Ash R. Norfolk,
ANSWERS TO CORRESPONDENTS.
A COUNTRY RECTOR will be admitted.
FUTURUS; EPAPHRODITUS; M. G.; PHILALETHES; THEOGNIS; A CYPHER, S under consideration.
CHARITATIS AMICUS, we think, must change his name before he can become the advo cate of Dr. Butler's sermon. In another and the main point of his letter, we deny th charge. He has quoted, as our language, words which we never used.
Our present limits would not suffice for correcting the misapprehensions of AN IMPARTIA OBSERVER. Referring him to what we have already written, we have now only to say that he has totally misapprehended us.
We are of opinion, that the time is past for the publication in the Christian Observer of th Letters of A LAYMAN on Mr. Stone's sermon.
SOPATER'S note has been received.
We must request THE AUTHOR who has written to us, not to consider our silence respec ing his publication as any mark of disrespect. We have it not in our power to notic one twentieth part of the books which are sent to us.
- STAFFORDSHIRE's request as to his lines is complied with.
No. for January, p. 44, col. 2, lines 15 and 16, for 5, in three places, read §.
10ME MEMORABLE THINGS, ESPECIALLY OF THE LAST YEARS AND HOURS OF
THE LAST COUNTESS OF SEAFIELD.
(Concluded from p. 69.)
and fear hun.
BOUT six or seven days before her death, she sent for her children, that she might give them ber last advice and blessing. To her son, my Lord Deskfoord, she aid, that he must be as a mother to the rest, and see to their education; and prayed that God would bless him and direct him in all his actions. If there was any worldly thing she desired, it was that the family might stand in his person. But, checking herself, she said, we ought not to seek worldly things of God, and that she was not worthy that there should be the least remembrance of her after her death.' She only beg ged, therefore, that God would give him a heart in every thing to love To my Lady Betty she said, she had been her idol from her infancy, and that she had loved her but too well. As she must now be mistress of the family, she bid ber labour for a serious and composed temper of mind. She urged it upon her never to be idle, but always to be employed, and to spend much of her time in praying and reading devout books. She bid her also be kind to her sister, as, notwithstanding the badness of her teaper, she had a particular kindness for her. Above all things, she charged her continually to love and fear God, and both in great things and in small to seek counsel from Him; and she would see that all her dficulties, on all occasions, would vanish, and God would give her CHRIST. OBSERV. No. 123.
wisdom without her knowing how: and this, she said, she had proved by her own experience. To my Lady Janet she said, that she had to complain of her temper as stubborn and perverse. She charged her to become more gentle and kind, and in particular to be affectionate and attentive to her sister, and to seek God with all her heart, and to look on all the advice given to her sister as given to herself. To Master George she said, that as he could not understand any advice she could give him, she should only pray God to bless him, and to make him a good man; and, calling for his governor, she charged him to instruct him in spiritual as well as temporal things, and earnestly to inculcate them on him. Then, looking on them all, she said, Ye are no more mine; ye are God's. After which, turning towards her mother, who was leaning on the back part of the bed, and observing her very sorrowful, and bitterly lamenting her approaching death, she said,Mother, part willingly with me, for you see I have parted willingly with mine.'
"She was very anxious that her heart should have no attachment but to God. When some inconsiderate person told her hastily, that my Lord Seafield would be there in a few hours, she felt considerable emotion; but, recovering herself, she said,
What! shall the creature yet interpose between me and God? Begone, all ye creatures. I have vowed it. I have renounced you all, and given up myself to God. I have vowed, O Lord, that I will be entirely thine. Lord, take thou the full possession of