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crying out, "Off, off, you jacober!" I, him), of great landed estate in the by way of episode in my harangue, county, said to another gentleman, who stooped down over the tail-board, and, told it to me immediately after the giving him a sowse, and knocking off meeting was over; this land-owner, his hat, said, "Hold your tongue, you while my motion was debating, bent great bleating fool! you will vote for down from the raves of the wagon, me by-and-by, after all;" and so he and said to this other gentleman, "I did; for he held up one hand, and put am sorry that the motion has been his hat upon the top of his whip and "made by HIM, but, since it is. held it up. Knatchbull would insist" inade, I HOPE THAT IT WILL upon it that the people had not under-" BE CARRIED." This man joined stood the meaning of the amendment, Knatchbull in his abuse of me in the and that the High Sheriff ought to put House, and thus I had complete proof the question again. This gave me an of the deep malignity of the Whigs opportunity of explaining the meaning against me. I knew well that both of my motion, which, as far as related sides wished it; and I knew their into the debt, I did in these words; "Gen- tention to do it, too, if they possibly tlemen, we are now paying the fund- could do it, without giving me the "holders three times as much as we ought credit of the thing. A gentleman who to pay them. My proposition is, that went to the House, and heard what, "we should pay them less. If we continue passed that evening, came and gave me to pay them at the present rate, the an account of it. Never was harmony "landlords will, in a few years, lose equal to that of that night. Castle"their estates. Farmers, traders, and reagh and Brougham; Knatchbull and others of the middle class, will be Honeywood; John Smith and John poor to what they have been; the Martin; Huskisson and Abercromby; * labourers will be starved, or will be Calcraft and somebody to match him driven into a state of convulsion and (if his match be to be found in the "civil war, and the country will be- world); all embraced each other, all come so feeble as not to be able to seemed to forget their sincerely recipgo to war, though the French were to rocal animosities in lamenting that the "sail up the Thames and attack the men of Kent should, from their mo"Tower of London. I call upon you, mentary want of reflection, have been "therefore, the pattern county of Eng- entrapped into such a petition, by the "land, to set an example to the country deep art of "a dishonest demagogue." "in praying for a measure which is The next morning confirmed the truth "absolutely necessary to preserve the of the verbal account that I had re"whole kingdom from ruin. You ceived, though stripped of the vivacity "now understand me clearly. I pro- of that report. But before I read this, "pose to you a just reduction of this and upon the verbal account, I exenormous and all-devouring debt." claimed, "What, do the


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Even after this, Knatchbull made a long" to think, then, that it is I that owe
speech, imploring the meeting to reject" this debt! "Tis their debt-not
any proposition., The High Sheriff put "mine; and now, by , I will take
the question again; and then, instead care that they shall not shuffle out of
of seven hands, there were four held up "it. Let their church go, and their
against it!
crown lands. If I be dishonest,' let
Up came the petition, piping hot, to" them pray honestly.. Henceforth
the House that very night. HONEY-" they shall learn what it is. to abuse
WOOD (the other member for
county), who had not held up his hand From this time I became an advocate
against my motion, joined, nevertheless, for national faith as well as they ;
in the hue and cry that was set up that is to say, an advocate for not
against it in the House. One gentle touching the funds without FIRST
man (I am not at full liberty to name touching the places, the pensions, the

the " me.'

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sinecures, the grants, the crowds of ge- people what the petition contained. nerals and admirals, the swarms of The High Sheriff' finally put the quesdead-weight; and particularly the crown tion again. And when the negative lands, the tithes, and other property com-was put upon it, even those that had monly called the church property. In been hired and stationed about the Hall the month of January, on the third day to prevent me from being heard, had of that month, 1823, there was to be a not the courage to hold up their hands. county meeting in Norfolk, and as soon The High Sheriff, therefore, signed the as it was announced, a friend gave me a petition, as the petition of the county freehold in the county, that I might be meeting. Both parties intrigued with legally present at the meeting. For him not to do it; but he, declaring it to this meeting, I, with plenty of time for be fairly the petition of the meeting, reflection beforehand, prepared a peti-clapped his name to it. When the tion which should be the standard; the news of this affair reached London, declaration of principles, upon which in CANNING, shallow as the fellow was, future I would proceed. It contained, saw in it a fearful sign; and it being in the first place, a description of observed to him that it was nothing, the immense swallowings of the aris-for that the meeting had never heard tocracy, in all the various branches of the petition read:" So much the worse," our enormous expenditure; and then said he, "for that shows the unlimited it declared, that though the interest of" confidence that they had in the man the debt ought to be reduced, that not" that proposed it." All manner of a farthing of that interest ought to be means were made use of to shuffle aside touched, until the crown lands and a this petition. It was sent up by a large part of the property commonly called church property, had been taken and disposed of for public purposes, and until the Parliament had been radically reformed. I myself was the mover of this petition. The meeting was held in St. Andrew's Hall, containing many thousands of persons. The two parties, with Coke and WOODHOUSE at their heed, contrived, by the combinations which they had formed beforehand, to have such noises made, that the meeting, generally speaking, never heard a word of the petition read: they saw it in my hand; they saw my lips move in the reading of it; they saw me hand it to the Sheriff, and heard him say, "I now put the petition of Mr. Cobbett," and up went their hands as of one man. COKE made a long speech, after the manner of Knatchbull, and talked a good deal about dishonesty, though heings against me. said not a word about Dungeness Lighthouse, that infallible proof of his own disinterestedness and generosity. He insisted that the question ought to be put again, because the people had not heard the petition read. PARSON GLOVER made a long speech, imploring the meeting not to agree to the petition; but the parson was fool enough to tell

coach, the people belonging to which contrived to miscarry it. I obtained it by a threat of prosecution; or, more likely, through the dread the coach people had of the consequences of the displeasure of the people of Norwich. When I carried it to Daddy Coke at his town lodging, he, without the smallest provocation on my part, treated me in the most haughty and insolent manner; and if I had then known what I now know about Dungeness Lighthouse, I would have paid him off upon the spot. As it is, I will pay him off by instalments, as disposition and opportunity shall serve now and then in a digressive paragraph: at other times in a simile to round a sentence with; here in a parenthesis; there in a single word. He has now become as mute as a mouse in one of the barns where he held his hole-and-corner meet

This Norfolk Petition was the beginning of a new era in my exertions for lightening the burdens of the country. SIR JAMES GRAHAM'S pamphlet of 1827, in which he proposed to take thirty per cent. from the fundholders, without taking a shilling from the aristocracy, or the church, or the dead-weight, or any thing else, afforded a fine opportu

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serum eit or gaizaoled aroluís bas, va¬{ lavos riq pinguri tuoda to stor nity for me to ask them what was be the whole of the debates upon the subCome of their charges against me on ject. He noticed the great breach of account of the Kent and Norfolk peti-national faith took place in 1819, and tions; and also afforded me a fine oppor- that, too, against the able remonstrances tunity for showing in detail the mon- of this very MR. ATTWOOD, 499x strous injustice of taking away a part It has been said that the fundholders of the income of the widows and or lost at one time as much as they have phans and aged persons, the means of gained since that time; and this has whose existence were deposited in the been asserted over and over again upon funds, while all the enormous pensions, the authority of MR. MUSHETT, who sinecures, grants, salaries, and all the published his tables to show it, in 1821. thousands of generals and admirals, and MUSHETT, who fell into the error of the all the millions upon millions swallowed stupid or cunning, and the babbling by the clergy, were suffered to remain Ricardo, took as his criterion the maruntouched. Nay, while sixteen hundred ket price compared with the mint price thousand pounds had been voted out of of gold; and this was the groundwork the taxes, to be given to the clergy, over of the stupid bill of Peel, in 1819, and above the immense amount of their which has produced more mischiefs to livings, four or five of which livings this country than all the seven plagues are frequently in the hands of one of Egypt would have produced if we single man. had had them all at one time, and the bare name of which being stuck to a man, is quite sufficient to characterize him for life. This error of Mushett was the grand groundwork of that bill. It deluded the land-owners to their ruin; and it has kept the country in a state of constant and gradual decline, till all the world sees its weakness, its nakedness, and its shame.

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Since this pamphlet of Sir James Graham; since the unmerciful lashing which that pamphlet got from my pen, we have heard very little from the landowners about the justice of touching the interest of the debt; very little until this proposition of my LORD ALTHORP came forth. Now, with regard to that proposition in itself, the only fault that I have to find with it is, that But, suppose the criterion of RICARDO it was a round-about, indirect measure, and Mushett to have been true. How the evident tendency and the motive stands the account even according to of which were not avowed; and that MUSHETT's own showing? The sublime the rate was too small to have been seignieur, LORD ELLENBOROUGH, with efficient, besides the operation being hair so nicely curled, and arms and * complicated. If his Lordship had pro-waist so pretty and so small; this sublime posed to take ten per cent. from the in-seignieur, in answer to LORD CARNARterest of the debt, without accompany-von, who had been hammering away ing it with any proposition for an addi- about the advantages which the fundtional tax upon the land, there would holders had derived from the change in have been frankness and efficiency, at the currency made by Peel's stupid any rate. As it is, the measure has a bill, this sublime seignieur advised the character of furtiveness about it, which noble Lord to read, a little book pubnobody likes. You clearly see what lished by Mr. Mushett, and observed, lawyers call the animus jurandi, ac- that he thought some copies of the companied with clamorous professions book ought to be bought at the public of sacred good faith." say that expense and distributed amongst their good faith to the nation demands a Lordships. Well, then, this is a book taking away of more than a half of the of great authority, it seems. And what -interest of the debt; and this was ably does this book show? Why, adopting insisted upon by MR. MATHIAS ATT- Mushett's criterion, so unjustly in favour WOOD, though that gentleman differs of the fundholders, it makes the account from me as to the proportion. He made square up to the year 1821; when, obthe only sensible speech throughout serve, the fund-holders were gaining at

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the rate of about twenty per cent! Pray and children belonging to this immense mark this före they have been gaining body.63 You have to reduce the standat the same rate ever since, except during ing army in time of peace, break up the time that the small paper anoney the academies, and sell the barracks. was out, in 1894 and 18251s Thus, with 710 Yous haves to bring the crown lands the exception of those two years; they to book; not forgetting Dungeness have been receiving twenty pericent. Light-house and its disinterested here. more than they ought to have received 8. Finally, you have to make at least a from 1821 unto the present day, even ace new distribution of the property of the cording to the showing of Mushett him church, as it is called ; to restore that self. They have been receiving more property to its ancient and legitimate than a million and a half a year, which uses; or to take it altogether, and apply is more than they ought to have re-it to national and secular uses. These ceived, even according to this account, things you have to do, my Lord Grey, which is all in their favour; and yet an before you will ever have the consent outery is raised, and a ministry are to be of this nation to take one farthing from driven from their posts, if they persevere the interest of the debt, in any shape, or in taking eight hundred thousand pounds under any name or guise of anxat ada a year from these fundholders4i ducing It is no longer ago than last winter Ah! my Lord Grey, look at the motto that Sir James Graham showed that one to this Register Look at the words hundred and thirteen men, almost all of that I addressed to your Lordship in them belonging to the two Houses of 1822! Do look, I pray you, at the Parliament, received six hundred and whole of that letter which I inserted in fifty thousand pounds a year amongst the last Register! Do, pray, believe them. We know well that there are that your situation is precisely that of about fifty Bishops, who have from ten the old French government in 1789! to forty thousand pounds a year each. It did not possess the power of lightening Take them at an average of fifteen the burdens of the people, without the thousand (and that is very low); and assistance of the people themselves; and here are seven hundred and fifty thouit did not call the people to its assistance sand pounds a year amongst fifty men. till it was too have yet time And, we these facts staring to call the people to your aid ; but you us in the face, will the nation hear of a have but one way under heaven of ac- proposition for deducting a part of the complishing that object ; and that is, by incomes which the widows and orphans giving them short parliaments, extensive and aged people have in the funds! suffrage, and the ballot. You have, Can we think of doing such a thing as however, something to do in the money this ; and can you think of doing it way, before I, for one, shall ever give under the pretence of easing the burmy consent to the taking of one single dens of the people, while you make us farthing from the interest of the debt, pay the pensions to LADY MORNINGYou have, 1. To scratch out all pen ron, to the sister of CANNING, and his sions not merited by well-known public widow, to the children of Fox, and to services. 2. You have to do away with women innumerable who never can have every sinecure of every description. rendered any service to the country! 3. You have to take away the grants and allowances, and all useless salaries, and take away every charge not useful for the public service. 4. You have to give us less than five Generals to every regiment of soldiers, and less than two Admirals to every ship of the line 5. You have to reduce the dead-weight to reward for services actually rendered, and to lop off all that is given to widows

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You have begun at the wrong end. A friend of mine, very partial in his opinion of my writings, confines himself to this single compliment: "Cobbett always begins at the right end;" a compliment which I have always endeavoured to deserve. You have begun at the wrong end. You have begun with the many instead of beginning with the few: you have begun with

that which the folly of former Ministers to observe that the eyes of all the peoand Parliaments, and particularly their ple seen now to be directed to this restupid malignity against me, have made source. There is no one cries out the people regard as sacred, never to be against the funds; rbt a single petition touched; and you have left untouched is there for taking a penny from the every thing on which the people look thirty millions a year which these funds with a grudging eye. Sir James Gra-cost, while, from one end of the country hain's pensioners and sinecure people, to the other, the air rings with the cries and the enormous revenues of the of the people to take away the property bishops and the clergy, are great marks of the church, in some shape or other. on which all eyes are fixed. The fund- How like the state of things in France, holders, though they, like Queen Bess's in the year 1789! The people there paupers, are, in reality, "every-where," did not seem to know that there was are seen by nobody; are, in many in-any-thing unjust or any-thing burdenstances, as poor as the rest of us; they some in the debt; but, as soon as their receive what they receive unseen; they tongues were let loose, began to find are unenvied, unhated; they receive out that the church was the cause of all what is regarded as their due; and the their poverty and sufferings. To work benefit to the nation in taking from they went, therefore, and took that prothem it would be difficult to make the perty to begin with; and this the clergymass understand, while their complaints most richly deserved, for having fawould be heard in every town and vil-voured the government and upheld it in lage in the kingdom; and every-where contracting the debt. In speaking of the contrast would be drawn between the seizure of the church property in their treatment and that of the fat pen-France, BURKE gives the following sioners and the clergy. There is no warning to England:-"Nations are argument by which a deduction from " I wading deeper and deeper into an the funds could be justified, or palliated, "ocean of boundless debt. Public which would not apply with ten-fold" debts, which at first were a security force to a total sweeping away of the" to governments, by interesting many pension and sinecure lists, and to all the "in the public tranquillity, are likely in other reductions of which I have spoken" their excess to become the means above; and this argument would be "of their subversion. If governments applied, too, by every man in the king-" provide for these debts by heavy imdom who had one spark of spirit in him." positions, they perish by becoming odiIf you had begun at the right end; if "ous to the people. If they do not proyou had taken the Norfolk petition and "vide for them, they will be undone by conned it over well; if you had acted" the efforts of the most dangerous of upon that petition with firmness, still" all parties; I mean an extensive disthe fundholder people would have op- " contented monied interest, injured posed you; but what would their op-" and not destroyed." These words position have been, and what would it are well worthy of the attention of the be now were you to propose a real re- landowners of England. Between form of the Parliament? Would you have fallen down at once before this combination? Would you have been driven out of a deliberate plan without even a sign of resistance?

these two dangerous rocks the Ministry and the aristocracy of England now stand. The heavy impositions have. made the people discontented with the Government. The Government has We are now come to this point: just made a slight attempt to get rid of something must give way you cannot the neccessity of these heavy imposi make the funds give way the labour-tions; and it has just had a sample of ing classes will have meat and bread; the efforts of this "most dangerous of and therefore something else must all parties." Here are the two dangive way. That something seems to gers between which the Government be the church; and it is truly curious stands. To save itself from the former,

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