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six short years it has settled, upon principles of humanity and wisdom,-after investigations of statesmanlike philosophy and justice, with a sound knowledge of our own wants and in a prudent anticipation of the wants of succeeding generations,-a greater number of greater questions than had been ever seriously even discussed in Parliament, within any two hundred years since the Norman conquest. Are the statesmen who abolished slavery weak and inefficient? Then what was Sir Robert Peel, who did not do it? Are the statesmen who carried the Reform Bill weak and inefficient? Then what was Sir Robert Peel, who did his utmost to oppose it? Is this the character which the Church of England should give the statesmen, who, instructed by the experience of Ireland, stepped in in time with the tithe arrangement, by which the property of the Church is perhaps augmented, and by which it certainly has been saved? What should be the answer of the landlords of England and its industrious poor, when asked for their opinion, and their feelings, concerning an Administration, which, with equal sagacity and boldness, has by the Poor Law Amendment, closed af gulf in which the property, industry, and virtue of the kingdom were threatened to be ultimately swallowed up? Is it weak to have extended the municipal principle of self-government in our towns? Sir Robert Peel has read M. De Tocqueville. Is it inefficient to have conciliated the Dissenters, by extending the principle of religious liberty as far as is consistent with the just ends and privileges of an Established Church? Sir Robert Peel was either not earnest when he tried, or he tried and failed. But the crowning distinction between the two systems of government -the system of principle and cordial sympathy, on the one hand, and on the other, the system of doing for the body of the people as little, as late, and as slow as possible-is seen in the state of Ireland. Ireland has been made more tranquil, more grateful, more truly English, by what the Whigs have tried to do for it, but have been prevented from doing by Sir Robert Peel, than it was made by the Emancipation, which Sir Robert Peel could never have carried but for the Whigs; or than Sir Robert Peel could ever make it, from the tone of alienation, grudging, and distrust, by which he does worse than neutralize his paper enactments of nominal relief. Lord Lansdowne and Lord John Russell have promised to meet the New Parliament with a plan of National Education. Here is another of those measures of principle which decide and elevate the character of a nation; and at which, during a life of office, Sir Robert Peel has never looked. But perhaps the words, weak and inefficient, were applied not to the nature of their measures so much as to their

numbers on a division. Sir Robert Peel knows well enough, in the present state of parties, what is the only way in which a strong numerical administration can possibly be formed. In the mean-time a majority of eighty, or a majority of five, are a better style of weakness and inefficiency than that of which he gave the country an example in his own Parliament-to wit, no majority at all.

It is difficult to get at Sir Robert Peel's real opinions. If he is sincere in thinking that measures of this description, and attended with these results, are symptoms of weakness and inefficiency, the public has less reason than ever for regretting that the destinies of the country are no longer in his hands;

'O loss of one in heaven to judge of wise.'

But the declarations and conduct of 1837 may be only of a piece with the declarations and conduct which he made, it is now just ten years since. Sir Robert Peel at that time told Mr Canning and the House of Commons, that his unlooked-for opposition to the Administration of which Mr Canning was the Premier, was grounded solely on the effect which Mr Canning's well-known opinions in favour of Roman Catholic relief must have in his new position. Yet at that very moment Sir Robert Peel had in his writing-desk the letter which he had himself addressed two years before to Lord Liverpool; having stated therein that in his opinion the time was come when the measure of Roman Catholic relief ought to be conceded, and having proposed that he should retire from office while it was carrying through. We cannot but suspect that Sir Robert Peel's present public objections to the Whigs do not come one iota nearer the nature of the difficulties he really feels, than was the case with his former public objections to Mr Canning. In both cases, we apprehend that the words of truth and candour would be found to be much the same.

We cannot close these observations more to our own mind, than by putting upon a more permanent record than the columns of a newspaper, the Letter lately addressed to the Electors of North Durham, by Lord Durham. Some of the specific views to which Lord Durham alludes are different from our own; but differences, so candidly announced in principle, and so cautiously restrained in practice, will never break the ranks of true reformers. The Radicals have no direct power whatever, acting independently, by and for themselves. The conduct which Lord Durham recommends, and of which he sets so valuable an example, is the only possibility which Radicalism has, at present, of contributing, in its proper place, its just and honourable share to the good government of the country:

This is not a moment when supineness or apathy can be tolerated. On the energies and determination of the liberal party, in all classes, depend the destinies of the empire. A most glorious opportunity now presents itself of strengthening that great cause of reform and amelioration to which we have been so long devoted. A new reign has commenced. Our Sovereign, with all the cordial confidence of an open heart and generous feeling, has placed herself unreservedly in the hands of a Liberal government. Let us by our exertions justify that step, and add to their means of efficiently serving her Majesty. Let us unite round her throne all that is good and wise and patriotic in the empire. Let our watchwords be-The Queen and Liberty! The Queen and the Constitution! The Queen and Reform! Whatever principles are most dear to us, most deeply implanted in the hearts of the people of England, may be, without reservation, identified with the name of the Sovereign. Educated by one of the best and wisest of her sex, her illustrious mother, our Queen knows that no throne is so secure as that which is based on the affections of its subjects-no crown sits so lightly or so gracefully as that on which are harmoniously blended the liberties of the people and the prerogatives of monarchy.

As for myself: As you have done me the honour, by desire of the meeting, to ask my advice, I will tell you candidly what my views are. They are what they have ever been, and are neither changed nor modified. I wish to rally as large a portion of the British people as possible around the existing institutions of the country-the Throne, Lords, Commons, and the Established Church, I do not wish to make new institutions, but to preserve and strengthen the old. Herein lies the difference between me and my opponents. Some would confine the advantages of these institutions to as small a class as possible; I would throw them open to all who had the ability to comprehend them, and the vigour to protect them. Others, again, would annihilate them, for the purpose of forming new ones on fanciful and untried principles. I would, I repeat, preserve them, but increase their efficiency, and add to the number of their supporters. I have often stated the modes by which, as I imagine, that efficiency can be most readily produced; but I have ever accompanied those declarations, as I do now, with the announcement of my determination never to force them peremptorily or dogmatically on the consideration of the Government or the Parliament. If they are (as in my conscience I believe them to be) useful and salutary measures for they are based on the most implicit confidence in the loyalty and good feeling of the people-the course of events, and the experience of every day, will remove the objections and prejudices which may now exist, and ensure their adoption whenever they are recommended by the deliberate and determined voice of the people.'

No. CXXXIII. will be published in October.


NOTE to the Article entitled Modern Egypt and the Modern Egyptians,' in Number CXXXI,

In our notice of the valuable work of Mr Lane, in the abovementioned article, we omitted to state that it had been published under the superintendence of The Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge. We cannot, however, take any blame to ourselves for this oversight, as the fault rests with those who failed to state the fact, in the work itself, in a way to make it known. We now willingly acknowledge the omission, as it is but common justice that the Society should have due credit for the aid it has lent to many useful publications, and which is not always acknowledged in the Journals in which they are noticed or criticised.


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