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that his, refusal had occasioned no York; but that a review of some delay to the sailing of the expedi- facts would show where blame tion. He hoped, however, that ought to rest.

In the beginning the practice would not obtain of of the war, the Irish militia force quoting confidential letters from was inadequate to its designed obohcers to government, which ject; and the common methods of might often prejudice the service ; recruiting could not supply that and concluded with expressing his defect. Mr. Dundas thought he decided opposition to the motion, could do it by draughts from the

Colonel Alexander Hope advert- supplementary militia : the geneed to what Mr. Grey had said ral thought this an ineffectual meconcerning sir Ralph' Abercrom- thod, and recommended that of by's letter on the taking of the draughting from the present miliHelder ; observing, that the men tia of the country. This, he said, to whom he referred formed no was the only sure way to procure part of the embarkation which an effective force. He censured sailed with sir Ralph, but arrived the reading of letters from offion the 9th, and were employed on cers in the house; and complained the 10th ; so that the chancellor of that both sir Charles Stuart and sir the exchequer's statement was still Charles Grey had been unworthily correct.

treated, who would have performMr. Bouverie thought the ed much more essential service to grounds of the motion parlia- their country had ministers granted mentary, and therefore supported them a proper force. it.

He concluded with calling on Mr. Nicholls thought that two all officers to vote for this motion, facts were universally admitted : as the best means of abolishing the that in February 1800 we had not practice of reading letters in that 20,000 men fit for a foreign expe- house, as ministers might do for dition, notwithstanding the great their own justification. number of the army; and that the Mr. Dundas rose to repel the inany was deplorably deficient in sinuation that he had aspersed the discipline. He knew not what conduct of the illustrious comwere grounds of inquiry if these mander in chief, sir Charles Stuart, were not.

and sir Charles Grey; for all of The secretary at war said, that whom, he said, he had ever enter. the small, army kept here in time tained the highest respect. He of peace had always caused much said that he had never recommenda: difficulty to collect speedily any ed any expedition to his majesty military force for a foreign expe- without also recommending to him dition; and that the state of the to appoint one or other of these country, during the present war, gallant officers to it. He denied required extraordinary force to that his opposition to this motion be retained in it: He defended was to save the character of his the Dutch expedition against Mr. royal highness the commander in Grey; and said he would always chief; for that there was nothing. oppose the granting of a paper as

in the letter but what was highly to a ground of charge.

his honour. He would not enter General Tarleton thought no into discussion of the expedition to blame imputable to the duke of Holland, but only state, that on the return of the army, the flower of a glorious war was a beneficial it was immediately sent to Ireland peace. He thought that the whole to defend it; and he would ask, of the letter ought to be read; and whether it was blamable to advise if the right honourable gentleman that measure, at a season of the wished well to the illustrious comyear when the long nights rendere mander in chief, he ought to proed an attempt at invasion more to duce it. If the letter were probe apprehended, because more duced, it might appear that the practicable, and when Great- commander in chief complained of Britain expected a supply of 10,000 not receiving sufficient notice, or men from the militia of Ireland ? proper supplies ; and alleged these As to the production of confiden- as reasons why a force for a foreign tial letters in debate, he held, that expedition could not be prepared a public man ought rather to sub- in less than two months. The mit to any calumnies, than to repel honourable gentleman had asserted them by producing what might in- that it might be wrong to produce jure others; but when no injury documents unfit for public investicould be done by producing such gation ; but surely it was more papers, he thought that a public wrong to refuse those in which the man might use them in his own conduct and character of others vindication.

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were concerned. General Tarleton explained. If the present motion was re

Mr. G. Ponsonby said, that the fused, it must be obvious that there right honourable gentleman (Mr. was blame somewhere, or it would Dundas) had, on a former evening, not have been met in so hostile a asserted the present to be the most manner by gentlemen on the other glorious war in which this country side. had ever been engaged; in saying Colonel Porter said a few words which he had thrown a heavy in support of the motion. weight of responsibility on his ma- The house then divided, when jesty's ministers now in office, there appeared, a yes 45~-noes 15). since the necessary consequence of Majority against the motion, 106.

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CHAP. IV.

High Price of Provisions. Report of the Committee of the House of Commons

on that Subject. Debate on the Report. Second Report, and Debate on the same.

Further Report on the same relative to Ireland. Debates on that Subject. Lord Suffolk's Motion in the House of Lords on the high Price of Provisions and the Extension of Paper Credit. Lord Il’arvick's, on the same Subject. Mr. Horne Touke elected Member for Old Sarum. Debates on that Subject. Clergy Incligibility Bill. Its Progress in the Commons. In the Lords.

HE high price and scarcity of still continued, engaged early the

provisions, which had in part attention of parliament. On the arisen from the failure of the crops 11h of February Mr. Yorke rose in of the preceding year, and which the house of commons to move for

a rèpeal

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& repeal of the act which permitted time before. The utmost deducthe mixture of oats and harley with tion, in consequence of the late wheat in the preparation of bread; bill, was that of six or seven farand the motion was seconded by things in the quartern loaf ; and, Mr. Alderman Curtis, and carried. as the coarser bread did not go

On the 12th Mr. Dudley Ryder near so far as the white, the loss to reported, from the committee ap- the public was greater than any pointed to consider of the high saving could be advantageous. price of provisions, a resolution for The resolution of the committce the purpose of repealing the act applied.only to the repealing of that of the former session : and on part of the act which respected the the 16th of the same month Mr. mode of dressing flour, by which Ryder moved for the house to con- the bakers would be allowed to sider the report of the commit- mix the bread without being subtee on the high price of provi- ject to the assize regulations. But sions. It was necessary, he said, the operation of the act of the 36th to state the reasons why it would of the king would be revived, by be proper to rescind the act of repealing it altogether; and thus last session: that act had been the object of the committee would passed from a supposition that a be attained. great saving might be effected in On the 2d of March the house, consequence of mixing a coarser on the motion of Mr. Ryder, rekind of meal with fine flour; but solved itself into a committee, to circumstances had since occurred take into consideration the second which led the committee to think report of the committee on the high they were somewhat deceived in price of provisions. After a detheir expectations. The commit- bate which was little interesting, tee, however, would not have except for the pleasantries of Mr. given up the measure, if the change Horne Tooke, (which however in their opinion had arisen from tem- were irrelevant to the subject,) porary difficulties only; because, if the resolution was agreed to; and it had been likely to have been at on the 4th the report was tended with ultimate success, it ceived, and was in substance as folwas their duty to have continued lows: it. But there were certain diffic That the united kingdom called culties which could not easily be Great Britain be divided into twelve Temoyed : one of these was, the districts, and premiums not exceedpartiality of the people to the finer ing 12,000l. be offered for the culsort of flour; and a notion that the tination of potatoes by proprietors coarser kind, as well as that manu- and occupiers of land not being factured from foreign wheats, could cottagers. not be manufactured with fine flour. That the following premiums be From these circumstances there granted in each district: viz. to was a greater demand in the mar. the person who should cultivate on ket for the superior wheat; by land, in the present year, the greater which means the price of fine number of statute acres of potatoes, four was raised far beyond a rea- for producing not less than 200 sonable price; and the inferior was bushels per acre, each bushel not though as the best had been some weighing less than sixty pounds, the 1801.

I number

re

seven

number of acres not being £. Peace he conceived to be the only less than thirty .

300 remedy, as the quantity of proFor the next, not being less visions consumed in expeditions

than twenty ..:. ... 200 greatly contributed to enhance. For the next, not less than

their price. ten

100 Mr. Jolliffe supported the same For the next, not less than opinion. He wholly condemned

70 the proceedings of the committee, For the next, not less than and of the board of agriculture ; six

60 being convinced, he said, that the For the next, not less than former had enhanced not lowered four

40 the prices of every necessary of For the next, not less than life ; and that the latter were ignothree

30 rant of the subject for the discussion To the next ten greatest, not of which they were 'assembled.being less than two acres each, 201. What would become of all the paseach-making 2001.

ture lands in the kingdom, together That premiums to the amount of with the cattle and horses which .13001. be offered for the encou- fed upon their produce, since the ragement of the culture of potatoes whole of those lands would, in by cottagers in England and Wales, consequence of the premiums, be to be distributed in sums not ex- turned into potatoe grounds? These ceeding 201. for each district in resolutions, therefore, would be which magistrates act at their productive of more evil than good, petty sessions in the several coun- and cottagers had not sufficient -ties; and to such cottagers who time upon their hands to cultivate should raise the largest average their own potatoes. crop of potatoes per perch, in not Mr. Buxton defended the comless than twelve square perch of mittee; but it did not appear to land,....

£.10 him that the measure before the To the second largest

6 house was calculated to promote To the third ..

4 public utility; and, if carried into That a sum be granted, not ex- execution, would overthrow all the cceding 30001., for encouraging the agreements between landlord and cultivation of potatoes in Scotland tenants. by cottagers.

Sir William Young thought it That a sum, not exceeding 20001., highly improper to favour one spebe granted to the board of agri- cies of agriculture in preference to culture, to be distributed in hono- another, to the detriment of the rary premiums to such owners of public good. land as should allot the greatest Mr. Wilberforce conceived there quantities of land among cottagers had been too much argument on this year, to be planted with po- abstract principles, without suffitatoes. On the motion that leave cient attention to the cases of gebe given to bring in a bill, Mr. T. neral convenience. He considered Jones spoke in opposition. He the proposed premiumsas judicious, thought they would add to the evil as a large stock of potatoes was arising from the high price of pro- needed, which there was not suflivisions, rather than diminish it. cient encouragement to cultivato,

To

To obviate the objections made send his cargoes thither, and ought concerning landlord and tenant, he to have a security against loss. meant to propose an amendment, After a few more observations of that no tenant should cultivate po- the same tendency, Mr. Ryder contatoes on land (without the con- cluded with moving, that bounties sent of the landlord) not used for similar to those granted on wheat, that purpose. If the prior resolu- barley, oats, rye, and rice, imported tions of the committee were re- into Great Britain, should be exjected, he hoped the house would tended to Ireland under certain not reject the resolution of assign- restrictions. ing premiums to cottagers.

Sir John Parnell represented the A member objected to the reso

scarcity in Ireland to be very great, lutions, on the ground of the legis- and the necessity of relief urgent. lative interference relative to agri- He approved the measure of the culture being unnecessary.

committee, but thought no time Mr. Whitbread also thought this was to be lost in waiting the slow interference ought to have pro- operations proposed in the plan. ceeded no further than granting li was a question of famine, and bounties for importation's of wheat. something was instantly to be done. He did not wish to arraign the Though the feelings of the Irish committee on the high price of pro- might be gratified by their necesvisions, but he thought the sudden sities being thus taken into consichanges of sentiment which had deration, they would receive no taken place, particularly respecting essential service. the brown bread bill, tended to The resolution was then agreed bring their opinions into disrepute. to, and ordered to be reported the

He believed the premiums pro- next day. posed (notwithstanding any amend- Sir John Parnell gave notice of ments) would cause much dissen- an intended motion which he should sion between landlords and tenants, bring forward, not doubting that arising from the clashing of oppo- the house would support ii from site interests.

justice as well as humanity. It On the 10th of March the house was to suspend, for a limited time, went into a committee, to consider so much of the charter of the East the further report of the committee India Company as prohibited the on the high price of provisions. landing of rice in Ireland, brought

Mr. Ryder said, the measure re- from the countries under the Eastcommended by the report was the India jurisdiction. A seasonable extension of the bounties upon supply of food would then be prograin imported into Ireland now cured. The first thing in the sea. payable upon that imported into son produced by Ireland was milk; Great Britain : though the price and if they had any thing to mix was not equally high in that coun- with it, they might live comforttry the deficiency was equally ably till the ensuing harvest. "It great: on this account, however, would be easy to dispatch orders it would not be possible to make for some of the ships sent out to the same regulations, but every India to land their cargoes in Irething ought to be done to equalise land. them as far as was possible. The Mr. Ryder expressed much plea. merchant should be encouraged to sure to hear these sentiments from

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