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ing the strength, if not the flower, of the constituent body, were held in all parts of the island; nor were they, as the Tories represent them, mere rabble-meetings : for, although they made but a limited display of glittering titles or flaunting equipages, a very considerable portion of the wealth and productive resources of the country, was represented at those meetings. And decidedly the preponderance of talent and information was at their side. The Lord-Lieutenant set a high value and reliance upon the assurances of public confidence and support, which thus flowed in upon him, and returned answers to them all, breathing a spirit of fearless and ardent devotion to those interests which he had come hither to protect.
We have lived to see the downfall of the unchristian and antisocial Orange System, and the submission of its “tall bullies" to the House of Commons. Not more than eighteen months before, had they bearded the authority of Parliament, and widely extended their associations for the express purpose of coercing it. But the premature exposure of their disloyal machinations, filled their coward hearts with dismay, and they were too happy at being allowed to strike their yellow flag, and march out without the honours of war.
If we should give all the credit of this “surrender” to the revelations made before the House of Commons, we would deal untruly and unjustly. Lord Mulgrave it was, who gave the first mortal blow to the monster, by assailing it in its high places. Others had attacked its outworks and skirmished with its meaner forces by petty prosecutions, which meant little and ended in nothing. He directed his charge against the Prætorian Band, and struck right at the faces of its chivalry. This it was which brought them to a sense of their situation, and made them anxious for any decent pretext to “turn and flee." The address of the House of Commons came seasonably to their relief, and the King's most gracious answer afforded an honourable cover to their retreat.
We allude more particularly to a rule laid down and constantly acted upon by Lord Mulgrave, not to admit to any employment or office, whether of honour, emolument, or trust, a person known or suspected to belong to a secret exclusive society. This resolution comprehended all Deputy-Lieutenants, High-Sheriffs and Magistrates, whether municipal or justices of the peace, Police officers, and in a word, every person whose appointment to a place could not be valid without the sanction of the Lord-Lieutenant. The excellence and propriety of such a rule will be best illustrated by contrast with the impartial system of the preceding administration; of which the following is a striking instance.
On the 9th of February, 1835, Lord Caledon, Lieutenant of the County of Tyrone, wrote to Sir Henry Hardinge, the Chief Secretary, stating that Lord Claude Hamilton had requested him to recommend him for the Commission of the Peace. But his Lordship felt a difficulty on the subject, arising out of a fact which is best described in his own words:
“On the requisition of the custos rotulorum, Lord Abercorn, Lord Castlestuart, and nineteen magistrates, in addition to several clergymen, and country gentlemen, I convened a meeting of the county on the 19th December, for the purpose of addressing the King, on his Majesty's assertion of the royal prerogative, and it was upon this occasion, I may say, in the face of the country, Lord Claude Hamilton was initiated in the Orange society, was decorated with Orange emblems, and was publicly chaired through the town by a body of Orangemen, who were assembled on that occasion.
“ This open and avowed adhesion to a particular party, and this disregard of what I consider the spirit which guides his Majesty's councils, has been very painful to me, and places me in the embarrassing position which I attempt to describe.
“When I consider how my hopes of tranquillizing the country have been counteracted; and knowing as I do, that the conduct of Lord Claude Hamilton had caused increased excitement, I cannot offer this recommendation to the Lord Chancellor, without exposing myself to animadversion.
“ On the other hand, when I reflect that he has been elected member for the county, and that his rank and station fully qualify him for the appointment, I know not how to withhold my recommendation, more especially as I do not believe the act of which I complain was in itself illegal; and, above all, when I am willing to hope, that, if appointed to the magistracy, his decisions will not be biassed by party prejudice.
“ Under these conflicting conditions, I lay the case before his Majesty's Government, and if I find no objection is taken on their part, I shall submit his lordship's name to the Lord Chancellor.
I have, &c.,
(Signed) CALEDON." On one of the late debates on the Irish Corporation Bill, Sir Henry Hardinge, with all that apparent openness by which his imposing manner is distinguished, denied that “the party with which he acted had been disposed to raise a No Popery cry.”. What thendid not Lord Claude Hamilton act with him? Or was it for his aptitude to “suppress all party feelings,” that Sir Henry himself judged that promising young patrician a proper person to assist Lord Caledon in carrying into effect his " most desirable system.” The answer of Sir Henry Hardinge is a rare piece of composition. But the reader will be particular to observe, that the Orange Neophyte was ordered by Lord Haddington's Chief Secretary, to be forthwith made a magistrate, “in strict
accordance with the principles by which his Majesty's councils were then guided.”
“ Castle, 9th Feb. 1835. Lord I have laid before the Lord Lieutenant your lordship's letter of this day's date, and I am desired by his Excellency to say, that the sentiments you express, and the judicious conduct you have always observed in the county of Tyrone, in suppressing all party feelings, meet with his Excellency's entire concurrence.
“ The line you have pursued is in strict accordance with the principles by which his Majesty's councils are guided; and it is only by a firm and impartial adherence to this system, that the peace of the country can be preserved.
“ The Lord Lieutenant regrets that any circumstances should have occurred by which your lordship should have been thwarted in carrying into effect this most desirable system of discouraging popular excitement; but his Excellency, after an attentive consideration of the statement made by your lordship, concurs in opinion with you, that, in the exercise of your discretion, it is expedient not to withhold the commission of the peace. I have the honour, &c.
(Signed) “H. HARDINGE." These are documents which should never be lost sight of. The Irish people should treasure them as memorials of their escape from the fangs of a faithless and hypocritical faction, and recur to them whenever they find their zeal flagging, as spurs to raise their spirits again, and bear them onwards out of the reach of its crawling but unwearied pursuit.
Lord Mulgrave's system is very different, in practice at least, from the “most desirable” one so lauded by Sir Henry Hardinge. His rule is such as we have stated, and he enforced it in every case without stopping to consult the "expediency" oracle, in any. They who were known to be Orange, were required to renounce, and those who were suspected, to disown, the dangerous and illicit connexion, before power or trust of any kind was placed in their hands. If they refused to qualify on these easy terms, the desired appointment was not allowed; if they complied with them, no further obstacle was opposed to it
. Nothing could be more just, or, consistently with that principle, more indulgent, than such a mode of proceeding.
The first remarkable example which occurred under this rule, was that of Mr. Robert Deane, a barrister of some reputation, whom the Corporation of Cork had nominated to be the Mayor of that city. Mr. Deane was the Master of an Orange Lodge, and in answer to a communication from the Government, avowed his determination to continue so. Accordingly, the Lord-Lieutenant struck out the gentleman's name from the return, and ordered
their worships in Cork to elect another Mayor, which they did, very indignantly,—but witha, very speedily.
This was a startling proceeding. The veto of the Government against civic appointments, had not been often resorted to. Tories had no occasion to use it; and “the Imbeciles” as they styled Lord Stanley and his associates, repudiated such revolutionary lengths. But Lord Mulgrave, having one principle, and one straight road to carry it through, refused to delegate magisterial authority to a member of a society, which he believed to be inconsistent with a just and equal administration of the laws. It was a spirited and dignified act, and astonished the faction; which till that moment knew not how well it had been beaten, and could hardly believe it even then. A shout of rage rang " from Carrickfergus to Cape Clear.” That is always the way with the Irish Tories, when they are panic-struck; and they have sometimes found their account in it. They set up Mr. Deane for a martyr, and paid him divine honours from every scorner of the land. The City of Dublin gave him its freedom in an imaginary gold box. The Earl of Bandon headed a procession, which waited on him with extraordinary pomp, to present an address of praise and condolence. All the Orange Lodges, one after another, celebrated him in resolutions, or overwhelmed him with addresses, or gave him dinners; but all this while he was not Mayor of Cork, and his sumptuously-furnished Mansion, his Livery Servants, his neat salary of Twelve hundred Sterling Pounds, and his convenient pickings of three hundred and fifty more,-another was permitted to take. It is questionable if the air-drawn snuff-boxes of admiring municipalities, or the sparkling rhetoric and champagne of peers and lodges, were worth all that he had lost. At all events, no person that had aught to lose by sticking to his “principles,” was emulous of sharing Mr. Deane's glory, or ambitious to be raised to a similar martyrdom. Even some who encountered like treatment, showed how acutely they felt the wound, by hiding it from the public.
Lord Dunsany, the Lieutenant of Meath, nominated Mr. Smith, of Annesbrook, to be one of his deputies. Sir Harcourt Lees is not more notoriously an Orangeman, than Mr. Smith. Yet, when Lord Dunsany was requested to enlighten the Government upon that point--He really did not know. But the Lord-Lieutenant knew; and rejected his recommendation. Doubtless, both the noble Lieutenant of Meath, and his nominee, felt highly indignant at such unceremonious treatment; but they wisely pocketed up the wrong," which if it were a sensible grievance to them, was, at the same time, such a proof of the firmness and sinoerity of the Government, as could not but pro
duce a refrigerating effect upon their own friends and partisans. The affair was, therefore, kept a profound secret, until Lord Morpeth introduced it in his speech on Mr. Hume's motion. Here was a wondrous cooling-down in a short time, from the attitude of outraged and outrageous innocence, which had been assumed in the matter of Mr. Deane. Nothing could more strongly mark the effect of the Lord-Lieutenant's steady and resolute system, in bringing this swaggering party to its senses.
Another point on which Lord Mulgrave's pulse was tried, was on the nomination of the Sheriffs. The judges were the feelers on this occasion; for upon them the duty devolves of returning three names from each county, out of which the Lord-Lieutenant is requested to name one to serve the office of High Sheriff'; and the ordinary practice is for his Excellency to nominate the first on the list. The list presented to Lord Mulgrave, was a perfect “ Hobson's choice." Had he been necessarily confined to it, he must have named professed factionists, in many counties, who would have had the selection of juries, at their discretion, and might thus have taught “ the Whig-Radicals,” that the administration of justice, according to the principles they pretend to bring into fashion, is not a thing so easily done as said. The notion of the Lord-Lieutenant breaking through the customary routine, even so far as to put the first last, appears not to have suggested itself; much less was it anticipated, that he would travel out of the record altogether, to beat up for names undistinguished by the judicial brand. Yet he did both. Every reputed Orangeman on the list, who could not, or would not, purge himself of the taint, was put by; several gentlemen of the number, who, according to the usage, should have had the first call, were shoved aside; and eleven, whose names had not been so much as entered on the judges' lists, were brought forward and sworn into office.
Contentions between tithe-owners and the occupiers of land, in Ireland, have, at all times, proved a snare and a stumbling-block to the executive Government. The impost is in its nature so obnoxious, and many of the laws, enacted to support it, are so tyrannical both in spirit and in operation, that the popular indignation seldom discriminates between the wilful and the ministerial enforcement of them; but an equal measure of hatred pursues him who resorts to the odious process, and those who are officially obliged to carry it into effect. Many attempts were made to force Lord Mulgrave into hostile collisions with the people on this account. A few peasants, slain in a similar melée to that of Rathcormac, would have been worth their weight in gold to the Tory party; and many agents, sacred and profane, were put in motion, to bring on so desirable a consummation. Nothing was