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The Committee further flated, that the bringing of actions for acts done by order of the House was a breach of the privileges of the Houfe; and that the House had a right to commit the perfons ferving notices of fuch actions. Mr Giddy faid, there were three different modes, according to which the Houfe might conduct itself in this cafe, viz. to iffue an inhibition against the interference of any court, in matters affecting the privileges of the Houfe; the next would be, to commit the persons who dared to ferve the procefs, but that would not prevent the actions from going on; the third mode of proceeding was, to inform the courts below of an intention to plead, either by denying the jurifdiction of fuch courts, or by pleading in bar. He wished that the Houfe might take these statements into its immediate confideration; and, in the mean time, fhould move, tha the report do lie on the table.
ed by 200 or 300 of the most respectable inhabitants.
Mr SIMEON, in feconding the motion for receiving the petition, obferved, that, although the meeting was unanimous, yet all the perfons prefent were not electors.
Mr WARD faid, if he understood the Hon. Gentleman rightly, he meant to say, that a petition for a reform in Parliament fhould not come from any but those of the conftituent body; in answer to that argument, he muft obferve, that it could not well be expected, that thofe who enjoyed a privilege would think it necessary to complain.
Mr SIMEON explained.
It was then read, and ordered to lie on the table.
Sir J. NICHOL, pursuant to his notice, after a few prefatory obfervations, moved, that feveral papers relating to tures and feizures made by his Majefty's cruizers in the Baltic, and the proceedings of the King's Advocate in these causes, be printed.
The SPEAKER acquainted the Houfe, that he had received a procefs from Sir Francis Burdett, requiring him to appear to an action of trefpafs, wherein the damages were laid at L 30,000. These were ordered to be referred to the Committee.
The Aberdeen harbour bill was read a third time, and passed.
Friday, May 11.
The SPEAKER acquainted the House, that he had received a letter from the Earl of Moira, dated St James's Place, May 10, 1810, which he read to the Houfe. His Lordship briefly ftated, that his counsel, Mr Garrow, had defired him to inform the Speaker, that a notice of procefs, at the fuit of Sir Francis Burdett, had been ferved upon him, as Constable of the Tower: that he did not folicit the intervention of the Speaker; but had directed his Solicitor to defend the action, refting his defence on the Speaker's warrant, and on the inftructions he had received from the Secretary of State. The letter was referred to the Committee.
Mr D. GIDDY brought a report from the Committee appointed to confider the notices of process against the Speaker, &c. which was read by the Clerk. The report ftated, that the Committee had found numerous inftances of perfons having been committed by the Houfe of Commons, for a breach of that part of its privileges which confifted in the liberty of speech; and it was always confidered, that fuch commitments were necellary towards maintaining the dignity of the Houfe. The practice of the House had been, to vindicate its own authority by its
The CHANCELLOR of the EXCHEQUER was not difpofed to regret that the queftion had not been brought to the teft, of whether the House had the power to defend its privileges. If the Houfe did not poffefs a legal power of protecting them, he was perfuaded they poffeffed the power of protecting them conftitutionally. He was convinced there was no judge in the land, who, when the queftion was stated to him to relate to the privileges of the Houfe of Commons, would not fay, I have no power to deter
Upon the motion of the LORD ADVOCATE bill, to repair certain roads and bridges in of Scotland, leave was given to bring in a the Highlands of Scotland. The Lord Advocate of Scotland brought up the bill, which was read a firft, and ordered to be read a fecond time on Wednesday next.
The LORD ADVOCATE of Scotland, in answer to fome inquiries of Mr AbercromScots creditors bill, under the impression bie's, faid, he had given notice as to the that the exifting bill would expire during that it extended to the next feffion; he had the present feffion; but he had fince found, therefore withdrawn that notice for the pre fent. With regard to the bankrupt laws of had given any fuch pledge, although he had Scotland, he denied, moft pofitively, that he been strongly preffed fo to do. thought it neceffary to confult certain legal authorities in Scotland, upon whole judgment he wifhed to act; but he had not, as yet, received their opinion. It was a fub ject of great importance, and, under thefe
circumstances, he did not mean to prefs the measure.
Monday, May 14.
Mr AUSTEN prefented a petition from the Eaft India Company, claiming L.1,900,000 as a debt due to them from the country; which was referred to the Committee on India affairs.
MAJOR CARTWRIGHT'S PETITION.
Mr WHITBREAD faid, he held in his hand a petition on the subject of Parliamentary Reform, purporting to be the petition of the "Underfigned Freeholders;" It was put into his hands by Major Cartwright, and he confidered it drawn up in decorous language.
The petition was brought up and read by the Clerk. It was very long, and fet out by ftating, that the late proceedings of the Houle, on the illegality of which, he conceived, there could be but one opinion, had brought the queftion of Parliamentary Re form more immediately to iffue. It referred to the decifion of the Houfe on the night between the 11th and 12th May last, on the charges brought against Lord Caftlereagh and Mr Perceval, which it characterifed as a flagrant outrage; as when feats in the Houfe were bought and fold, Englishmen were bought and fold- and this practice it afferted was paft endurance. It then went through the topics of the profligacy of fell ing feats, and the audacity of vindicating it; the illegality of the Houfe affuming higher powers than belonged to it-higher than the united Parliament or the King himfelf. It laid down what the Houfe ought to be, to be entitled to the reverence of the people, and argued, hypothetically, that it might be the reverfe, and abandoned to every viceits feats to be trafficked in by unprincipled fharpers, unfaithful Minifters, Afiatic Nabobs, &c. In proof of this, it cited the Na bob of Arcot's having purchafed feats for feven or eight of his agents, and the agent of a French King's Miftrefs, (we believe Madame du Barre) having a feat in the Houfe. By this means the Conftitution might be murdered, and, unlike the King, who never died, as one fucceeded another without a break, the Conftitution, if it once fell, would never refufcitate. From thefe doctrines, it argued the neceffity of a radical reform, and concluded by condemning the employment of a standing army, as had been done in taking Sir Francis Burdett. Under the civil government, the country would acquiefce, but under the military it was rank defpotifm.
Mr WHITBREAD moved, " That the petition fhould lie on the table."
Tuesday, May 15.
Mr WHITBREAD gave notice, that he hould, to morrow, move for leave to bring in a bill to explain and amend an act of the laft fellion with regard to the regulation of workhouses. Seeing a Right Hon. Gent, in his place, he took an opportunity of faying a few words upon the fubject of the papers which had been laid before the House relating to the late differences between Ame rica and this country; the charge against Mr Erskine, of having acted directly in contradiction, not only to the fpirit, but not according to the letter of those instructions and, in his vindication, nothing more was ne ceffary than the publication of that paper which was now before the Houfe.
Mr CANNING faid, the Hon. Gentleman had charged him with a mifreprefentation, which, if it could be established, would have proved him guilty of injuftice towards the country-it would have reflected difgrace upon his own character, by fhewing he was capable of traducing another man. He did not hesitate to repeat his affertion that Mr Erskine had not acted up either to the letter, or the fpirit of his inftructions; and he was prepared at any time that the friends of that gentleman thought proper.
Wednesday, May 16.
The CHANCELLOR of the EXCHEQUER, in introducing this fubject, faid, he should commence by a statement of the fupplies which had already been voted for the prefent year.
racks & Commif
Navy (exclufive of Ordnance
England ......... 46,079,000
To meet these supplies the Ways and gainst it 93 ; majority 6.
Means were as follow:
Friday, May 18.
the intereft of the loan; the furplus of the ftamp duties were more than fufficient for the purpofe. The loan had been procured upon more advantageous terms than had ever been done before, fince the intereft given to the contractors was not quiteL 4 5. which was much lefs than private individuals could borrow at. Several obfervations were made by Mr Hufkiffon on the necefiity of economy, as the war was likely to be of infinite continuance. He thought that 20,337,000 fome millions annually might be faved in 4,411,000 the naval department. After fome remarks 2,000,000 by Mr Rofe, Mr Tierney, Mr Thornton. and Sir T. Turton, the refolutions were read 3,200,000 and agreed to; and the houfe having r fumed, the report was ordered to be recei ved on Friday.
WAYS AND MEANS.
Annual Duties.................................................. L.3,000,000
Mr D. Giddy brought up the report of the felect committee appointed to fearch for precedents in the cafe of Sir F. Burdett.
The report being read, fome objections were made to it by Mr Horner; in confequence of which, after a debate of fome *5,311,600 length, the report was ordered to be re
*The Exchequer Bills funded in the present year, amount to The like amount to be iffued for the fervice of 1810, will be applied.
To difcharge Vote of
Credit Bills 1809. 3,000,000 Towards the Supply
of the Year.........5,311,600
Thursday, May 17.
Mr WHARTON obtained leave to bring in a bill for extending the fuperannuation of the officers of excife in Scotland.
On the third reading of the Duke of Brunswick's annuity bill, a debate enfued on the propriety of reimburfing the confolidated fund from the droits of the admiralty. The bill, however, was paffed.
The house went into a committee on Mr Martin's financial refolutions. On the refolution being read for the abolition of fine
No new taxes were to be impofed to pay journed till Thursday.
In a general order, iffued by the Governor-General, on the 25th September 1809, the following officers were ordained to be tried by a Court Martial, viz :-Lieut.-Col. John Bell, 1ft bat. artillery, fenior officer, commanding Seringapatam; Lieut.-Colonel John Doveton, 8th regiment cavalry, commanding a detachment of the Hydrabad Subfidiary force at Jaulna; Major Jofeph Storey, 1ft bat. 19th regiment, N. I. fenior officer, commanding Mafulipatam,
The alternative of a Court Martial, or the refignation of their commiffions, was alfo of fered to the undermentioned officers: Lieut.-Col. Munro, 2d bat. 15th regiment, Seringapatam; Major David C. Kenny, 2d bat. 19th regiment, ditto; Capt. T. F. De Haviland, engineers, ditto; Capt. George Cadell, 12th bat. N. I. and Town Major, ditto; Capt. Hugh M'Intosh, 1ft bat. Sth regiment marched without orders from Chittledroog to Seringapatam ; Capt. F. K. Aifkill, 1ft bat. 15th regiment, ditto; Capt. A. Andrews, Madrafs European regiment, Mafulipatam; Capt. James Patterson, 1ft bat. 11th regiment, Samulcottach; Captain Gec. Wahab, 1ft bat. 21ft regiment, Chicacole; Capt. James Sadler, 1ft bat. 24th regiment, Ellore; Capt J. L. Lushington, 4th regiment cavalry, ditto; Capt.-Lieut. C. Hopkinfon, 1ft bat. artillery, fenior officer of artillery, at Jaulna; Capt.-Lieut. G. W. Poignand, horfe artillery, fenior officer of the corps at Jaulna; Capt. C. M. Gibfon, 1ft bat. 10th regiment, Jaulna; Capt. Thomas Pollack, 1ft bat. 12th regiment, ditto; Major Mathew Stewart, 2d bat. 17th regiment, ditto; Capt. John Turner, 2d bat. 15th regiment, Seringapatam.
All the above Gentlemen, with the exception of Capt. M'Intosh, who commanded the Chittledroog detachment, have refolved
to abide the event of a trial.
By the latest intelligence received from that quarter, it appears that feveral duels had taken place between the officers of his Majefty's and the Company's army, arifing out of matters connected with the late transactions. And the officers fufpended from command on declining the test of obedience, offered to them by Lord Minto, have been received, on joining their refpe&ive corps,
with a vifable coldness and reserve, by the native officers.
An authorized publication has recently iffued from the prefs, vindicative of the official condu& of Mr Petrie one of the Members of the Supreme Council of Madras, in the oppofition fhewn by him to the system of Sir George Barlow, for the fuppreflion of the difcontents in the Madras army. This confifts wholly of public documents, in the form of a statement of facts prefented to Lord Minto, and a reply to a minute, allo detailed, of the governor of Fort St George.
Thefe papers are of too great an extent to infert at length, nor will our time or space allow us to make, at the inftant, any other than a fhort extract from them, and that chiefly applicable to the military queftion.
"That the Government would not have been difpofed to carry their refentments further than the difmiffal of General Macdowall, with the ftrong and criminating orders that they published to the army on that occafion, and that it would not have appeared neceffary to extend punishment to the fubordinate officers, who acted merely in obedience to the orders of the General.Sir G. Barlow viewed in a different light, and, in an evil hour, propofed and carried the fatal refolution, of fufpending the Adjutant and Deputy Adjutant-General from the fervice, for having, in the ufual forms of office, circulated, agreeably to the directions of the Commander in Chief, his addrefs to the
"The measure of removing Lieut.-Col. Capper and Major Boles, was univerfally condemned by the most refpectable officers in the army, and not more fo by the officers in the Company's fervice, than by those of his Majefty's regiments. It was felt by all as the introduction of a most dangerous principle, and fetting a pernicious example of a difobedience and infubordination to all the gradations of military rank and autho rity; teaching inferior officers to question the legality of the orders of their fuperiors." &c.
Mr Petrie, after an expofition of the conciliatory policy which is faid to have gover ned his conduct proceeds to state
There is a wide difference (he obferves) between the mutiny of a corps and the difaffection and revolt of a whole army, and the measures suitable to the one are totally inapplicable to the other; prompt and rigorous correction will compel the one, but the other must be regained and fubdued by the fame means which wisdom, talents, and knowledge of the human mind employs in the government of millions."
In this impreffion, Mr Petrie recommends conciliatory measures, and particularly deprecates the publication of the orders of the 1st of May; which fufpended from the fervice, or removed from their official stations, eight meritorious officers, without trial or a hearing in their defence. After fhewing the inapplicability of thefe orders to the ftate of things, and the more than hazardous tendency of them, Mr Petrie contrafts the view taken by Sir G. Barlow of furrounding circumftances, and the policy which he fancied to be adapted to them, with his own.
"To Sir G. Barlow it appeared that government must not concede under any circumftances whatever, and must meet all thofe eventual misfortunes rather than repeal an order once paffed, or refcind any of the feverity which have been adopted towards the army. Very different is the refult of my reflections on this momentous fubject, implicating the lives of thousands, and national confiderations of greater magnitude than ever came under the deliberation of a British Government. On the opinion I have given I muft fland or fall; but however I may bow with fubmiflion to the will of a fuperior authority, I do not think that torture could make me retract the folemn dictate of my conscience, that every order iffued by this government, for the lait twelve months, had better be repealed, than the country plunged into the incalculable horrors of civil war-a war with our countrymen, Briton against Briton, and the Sepoys appealed to and called in to decide this fatal conflict."
"With refpect to remote and ultimate confequences, this appeal of government to the native troops is more pregnant with danger to our fecurity in India than any other measure we have yet adopted. Be fides its immediate and ruinous effects on the difcipline and fubordination of the army, it leads to confequences of far more general magnitude and importance. "By this appeal to the fepoy, we infruct him in the fatal truth, that on the upport of his arm depends the fecurity of
the empire of the eaft. It removes the delufion by which for fo many years a handful of Europeans have kept millions in awe; and for a temporary, and no great national object, endangers the whole machine of our Indian government. I confider this to be the most fatal wound that the public fafety has received in the prefent diftracted conflict. Granting us complete fuccefs, it will be found, I fear, at no remote period, that we have purchased the victory at the ruin of our country. Great indeed must be the emergency, and the object of infinite importance, to justify a government in reforting to the dangerous and unexampled experiment we have made on the native troops: nothing lefs, in my opinion, than an obvious and evident danger, which menaces the very existence of the state, by a combination of officers to deliver over the army, or the country, to our enemies."
Mr Petrie explains, on the concurrent opinions of the best-informed military men, that an appearance even of conciliation would have brought back the minds of the army to their original ftate of obedience; inftead of which they were inflamed, as he remarks, by a number of leffer and fubordinate caufes; which fhould have been most ftudiously avoided by any one, not defirous of producing thofe calamitous effects which Mr Petrie deplores. On this fubje& he continues
"I fhall at prefent only advert to the very injudicious, indifcreet, and frivolous difputes, which, for the laft fix or feven months, have taken place with refpect to toafts, invitations, and other circumftances of the fame nature, in the private focieties of the fettlement. The power and influence of Government on one fide, and the general unpopularity of its measures on the other, produced parties in fociety, which very extraordinary talents might have reconciled, but which authority could not fupprefs. In the commencement of the discontents, the military in general, at the Presidency, declined accepting of the governor's invitations to dinner.-This was taken up in a manner which gave importance to a circumftance of no moment in itfelf, and, by making the refufal a breach of military difcipline, it increafed the fpirit of refiftance; and many officers preferred incurring the severeft difpleasure of Government rather than give this involuntary teft of obedience. The young men of the inftitution were ordered to their corps, becaufe they would not attend a ball of Lady Barlow's. A battalion of fepoys was fent across the peninfula to Goa, because the officers refufed to dine with the Governor: this was certainly