Obrazy na stronie

say, a hundred and ninety-eight sandth time I ask it; what were souls to each parish; or, reckon these twenty churches built FOR? ing five to a family, thirty-nine Some of them stand within a families to each parish. Above quarter of a mile of each other. one half of the population never They are pretty nearly as close to could be expected to be in the each other as the churches in church at one time; so that, here London and Westminster are. are one-and-twenty churches What a monstrous thing, to supbuilt for the purpose of holding pose that they were built without two thousand and eighty people! there being people to go to them; There are several of these and built, too, without money and churches, any one of which would without hands! The whole of conveniently contain the whole of the population in these twentythese people, the two thousand one parishes, could stand, and and eighty! The church of without much crowding too, in the Bishopstrow would contain the bottoms of the towers of the sevewhole of the two thousand and ral churches. Nay, in three or four eighty very well indeed; and, it of the parishes, the whole of the is curious enough to observe, that people could stand in the church the churches of FISHERTON AN- porches. Then, the church-yards GER, HEYTESBURY, and WAR- show you how numerous the poMINSTER, though quite sufficient pulation must have been. You to contain the people that go to see, in some cases, only here and church, are none of them nearly there the mark of a grave, where so big as several of the village the church-yard contains from churches. All these churches are half an acre to an acre of land, built long and long before the and sometimes more. In short, ·reign of Richard the Second; that every thing shows, that here was is to say, they were founded long once a great and opulent populabefore that time, and if the first tion; that there was an abunchurches were gone, these others dance to eat, to wear, and to were built in their stead. There spare; that all the land that is is hardly one of them that is not as now under cultivation, and a old as the reign of Richard the great deal that is not now under Second; and yet, that impudent cultivation, was under cultivation Scotchman, GEORGE CHALMERS, in former times. The Scotch begwould make us believe, that, in gars would make us believe that the reign of Richard the Second, we sprang from beggars. The the population of the country was impudent scribes would make us hardly any thing at all! He has believe, that England was forthe impudence, or the gross igno- merly nothing at all till they came rance, to state the population of to enlighten it and fatten upon it. England and Wales at two mil- Let the beggars answer me this lions, which, as I have shown in question; let the impudent, the the last Number of the Protestant brazen scribes, that impose upon Reformation, would allow only the credulous and cowed-down twelve able men to every parish English; let them tell me why church throughout the kingdom. these twenty-one churches were What, I ask, for about the thou-built; what they were built FOR;

why the large churches of the men; and particularly to reflect, two CODFORDS were stuck up that we are descended from those, "beef, pork, within a few hundred yards of amongst whom each other, if the whole of the po- mutton, and veal, were the food of pulation could then, as it can now, the poorer sort of people." What! be crammed into the chancel of and is the "Emigration Comeither of the two churches? Let mittee" sitting, to invent the them answer me this question, or means of getting rid of some shut up their mouths upon this part of the thirty-nine families subject, on which they have told that are employed in raising the immense quantities of food in each so many lies. As to the produce of this valley, of these twenty-one parishes! it must be at least ten times as Are there schemers to go before great as its consumption, even if this conjuration Committee; Wiltwe include the three towns that shire schemers, to tell the Combelong to it. I am sure I saw mittee how they can get rid of a produce enough in five or six of part of these one hundred and the farm-yards, or rick-yards, to ninety-eight persons to every pafeed the whole of the population rish? Are there schemers of this of the 21 parishes. But the in- sort of work still, while no man, fernal system causes it all to be no man at all, not a single man, carried away. Not a bit of good says a word about getting rid of beef, or mutton, or veal, and the dead-weight, or the supernuscarcely a bit of bacon is left for merary parsons, both of whom those who raise all this food and have actually a premium given wool. The labourers here look them for breeding, and are filling as if they were half-starved. They the country with idlers? We are answer extremely well to the pic-reversing the maxim of the Scripture that FORTESQUE gave of the ture: our laws almost say, that French in his day. Talk of those that work shall not eat, and "liberty," indeed; "civil and that those that do not work shall religious liberty": the Inquisition, have the food. I repeat, that the with a belly full, is far preferable to a state of things like this. For my own part, I really am ashamed to ride a fat horse, to have a full belly, and to have a clean shirt upon my back, while I look at these wretched countrymen of mine; while I actually see them reeling with weakness; taxation. They know well, how unwhen I see their poor faces present just it is to treat their labourers in me nothing but skin and bone, this way. They know well, that while they are toiling to get the there goes down the common foot wheat and the meat ready to be soldier's single throat more food carried away to be devoured by than is allowed by them to a lathe tax-eaters. I am ashamed to bourer, his wife, and three chillook at these poor souls, and to dren. They know well, that the reflect that they are my country-present standing army in time of

baseness of the English landowners surpasses that of any other men that ever lived in the world. The cowards know well that the labourers that give value to their land are skin and bone. They are not such brutes as not to know that this starvation is produced by

peace consumes more food and vain. It was their duty to stand raiment than a million of the forward and prevent Power-oflabourers consume; aye, than two Imprisonment Bills, Six Acts, millions of them consume; if you Ellenborough's Act, Poaching include the women and the chil-Transportation Act, New Tresdren; they well know these things; pass Act, Sunday Tolls, and the they know that their poor labour- hundreds of other things that ers are taxed to keep this army in could be named. On the confatness and in splendour. They trary, they were the cause of know that the dead-weight, which, them all. They were the cause of in the opinion of most men of all the taxes, and all the debts; sense, ought not to receive a single and now let them take the consefarthing of the public money, quences! swallow more of good food than a SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 2d.— third or a fourth part of the real After I got to Warminster yesterlabourers of England swallow. day, it began to rain, which stopThey know that a million and a ped me in my way to FROME in half of pounds sterling was taken Somersetshire, which lies about out of the taxes, partly raised upon seven or eight miles from this the labourers, to enable the poor place; but, as I meant to be quite Clergy of the Church of Eng-in the northern part of the county land to marry and to breed. They by to-morrow noon, or thereknow that a regulation has been abouts, I took a post-chaise in the recently adopted, by which an afternoon of yesterday, and went old dead-weight man is enabled to to FROME, where I saw, upon my sell his dead-weight to a young entrance into the town, between man; and that, thus, this burden two and three hundred weavers, would, if the system were to be men and boys, cracking stones, continued, be rendered perpetual. moving earth, and doing other They know that a good slice of the sorts of work, towards making a dead-weight money goes to Han- fine road into the town. I drove over; and that even these Han-into the town, and through the overians can sell their dead-principal streets, and then I put weight claim upon us. The my chaise up a little at one of the "country gentlemen fellows" know inns. This appears to be a sort of all this: they know that the poor little Manchester. A very small labourers, including all the poor Manchester, indeed; for it does manufacturers, pay one-half of not contain above ten or twelve their wages in taxes to support all thousand people, but, it has all the these things; and yet not a word flash of a Manchester, and the about these things is ever said, or innkeepers and their people look even hinted, by these mean, these and behave like the Manchester cruel, these cowardly, these car- fellows. I was, I must confess, rion, these dastardly reptiles. Sir glad to find proofs of the irretrievJAMES GRAHAM, of Netherby, able decay of the place. I rewho, I understand, is a young fel-membered how ready the bluff low instead of an old one, may in- manufacturers had been to call in voke our pity upon these "ancient the troops of various descriptions, families;" but he will invoke in" Let them," said I to myself.

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"call the troops in now, to make clothing, fuel, candle, soap, and "their trade revive. Let them house-rent, over and above what now resort to their friends of the is allowed to this miserable family! yeomanry and of the army; let And yet the base reptiles, who, "them now threaten their poor are called "country gentlemen,' "workmen with the gaol, when and whom SIR JAMES GRAHAM "they dare to ask for the means calls upon us to commit all sorts "of preventing starvation in their of acts of injustice in order to "families. Let them, who have, preserve, never utter a whisper "in fact, lived and thriven by the about the expenses of keeping the "sword, now call upon the par- soldiers, while they are everlast"son-magistrate to bring out the ingly railing against the working "soldiers to compel me, for in- people of every description, and "stance, to give thirty shillings a representing them, and them only, "yard for the superfine black as the cause of the loss of their "broad cloth (made at Frome), estates! "which Mr. RoE, at Kensington, These poor creatures at Frome "OFFERED ME AT SEVEN have pawned all their things, or "SHILLINGS AND SIX nearly all. All their best clothes; "PENCE A YARD just before their blankets and sheets; their "I left home! Yes, these men looms; any little piece of furni"have ground down into powder ture that they had, and that was "those who were earning them good for any thing. Mothers have "their fortunes: let the grinders been compelled to pawn all the "themselves now be ground, and tolerably good clothes that their "according to the usual wise and children had. In case of a man "just course of Providence, let having two or three shirts, he is "them be crushed by the system, left with only one, and sometimes "which they have delighted in, without any shirt; and, though this "because it made others crouch is a sort of manufacture that cannot "beneath them." Their poor very well come to a complete end; work-people cannot be worse off still it has received a blow from than they long have been. The which it cannot possibly recover. parish pay, which they now get The population of this Frome has upon the roads, is 2s. 6d. a week been augmented to the degree of for a man, 2s. for his wife, 1s. 3d. one-third within the last six or for each child under eight years seven years. There are here all of age, 3d. a week, in addition, to the usual signs of accommodation each child above eight, who can bills and all false paper stuff, go to work; and, if the children called money: new houses, in above eight years old, whether abundance, half finished; new girls or boys, do not go to work gingerbread "places of worship," upon the road, they have nothing! as they are called; great swagThus, a family of five people have gering inns; parcels of swaggering just as much, and eight pence fellows going about, with vulgarity over, as goes down the throat of imprinted upon their counteone single foot soldier; but, ub-nances, but with good clothes serve, the standing soldier; that upon their backs. I found the truly English institution," has working people at Frome very

them something; and I was told that they did the same at Salisbury. The landlord at HEYTES BURY told me, that every one of them had a license to beg, given, them, he said, "by the Government." I suppose it was some pass from a Magistrate; though I know of no law that allows of such passes; and a pretty thing it would

passes, when the law so positively commands, that the poor of every parish, shall be maintained in and by every such parish. However, all law of this sort, all salutary and humane law, really seems to be drawing towards an end in this now miserable country, where the thousands are caused to wallow in luxury, to be surfeited with food and drink, while the millions are continually on the point of famishing. In order to form an idea of the degradation of the people of this country, and of the abandonment

intelligent; very well informed as to the cause of their misery; not at all humbugged by the canters, whether about religion or loyalty. When I got to the inn, I sent my post-chaise boy back to the road, to tell one or two of the weavers to come to me at the inn. The landlord did not at first like to let such ragged fellows up stairs. I insisted, however, upon their com-be, to grant such licenses, or such ing up, and I had a long talk with them. They were very intelligent men; had much clearer views of what is likely to happen than the pretty gentlemen of Whitehall seem to have; and, it is curious enough, that they, these common weavers, should tell me, that they thought that the trade never would come back again to what it was before; or, rather, to what it has been for some years past. This is the impression every where; that the puffing is over; that we must come back again to something like reality. The first factories that I met with were at a village of every English principle, what called UPTON LOVELL, just before I came to HEYTESBURY. There they were a doing not more than a quarter work. There is only one factory, I believe, here at Warminster, and that has been suspended, during the harvest at any rate. At FROME they are all upon about a quarter work. It is the same at BRADFORD and TROw-wayes, and out of which taxes the BRIDGE; and, as curious a thing as very pay of these soldiers comes! ever was heard of in the world is, is not this one fact; this disgracethat here are, through all these ful, this damning fact; is not this towns, and throughout this coun- enough to convince us, that there try, weavers from the North, sing- must be a change; that there ing about the towns ballads of must be a complete and radical Distress! They had been doing change; or that England must it at SALISBURY, just before I was become a country of the basest there. The landlord at HEYTES- slavery that ever disgraced the BURY told me that people, that earth? could afford it, generally gave

need we of more than this one disgraceful and truly horrible fact, namely, that the common soldiers of the standing army in time of peace subscribe, in order to furnish the meanest of diet to keep from starving the industrious people who are taxed to the amount of one half of their


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