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tary enquiry. The public councils took a different direction in the two countries. On the 5th of February, the lord lieutenant acquainted parliament, with the melancholy indisposition of his Majesty, and his inability to discharge the duties of government. The secretary to the lord lieuteiiaut moved the house to resolve itself into a committee, on the Monday se'nnight, to take the state of his Majesty's health into consideration. This delay, for the purpose of regulating the proceedings of the Irish parliament by that of Great Britain, was opposed, as derogatory to the independence of the kingdom, and the dignity of parliament; and Wednesday appointed, by a majority of 128 to 74. The business of supply was postponed to the 12th of February. On the 11th, after a violent debate, the house of commons resolved, without a division, that an Address should be presented to the Prince of Wales, requesting him to take on himself the government of the kingdom, as regent, during his Majesty's incapacity. In this, on the motion of the earl of Charlemont, the House of Lords concurred. On the 19th, both houses waited on the lord lieutenant with their Address, requesting him to transmit the same; which he positively refused to comply with, alleging his oath and official duty. Hereupon both houses resolved to send some of their own members, to present the Address to the Prince of Wales. This was followed by a vote of censure on the lord lieutenant, and short money bills. But the fortunate recovery of his Majesty terminated their vigorous proceedings in favour of the Prince of Wales. The committee of the two houses arrived in London on the 25th, and the next day presented the following Address to the Prince.
"To his Royal Highness George Prince of Wales. The humble Address of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Knights, Citizens and Burgesses, in parliament assembled.
"May it please your Royal Highness, we, his Majesty's most dutiful and loyal subjects, the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and the Commons of Ireland in parliament assembled, beg leave to approach your Royal Highness,with hearts full of the most loyal and affectionate attachment to the person and government of your royal father, to express the deepest and most grateful sense of the numerous blessings which we have enjoyed under that illustrious house, whose accession to the throne of these realms has established civil and constitutional liberties on a basis which, we trust, will never be shaken; and at the same time to condole with your Royal Highness upon the grievous malady with which it has pleased Heaven to afflict the best of sovereigns.
"We have, however, the consolation of reflecting, that this severe calamity hath not been visited upon us, until the virtues of your Royal Highness have been so matured as to enable your Royal Highness to discharge the duties of an important trust, for the performance whereof, the eyes of all his Majesty's subjects of both kingdoms are directed to your Royal Highness.
"We therefore beg leave humbly to request, that your Royal Highness will be pleased to take upon you the government of this realm, during the continuance of his Majesty's present indisposition, and no longer; and under the style and title of Prince Regent of Ireland, in the name and on the behalf of his Majesty, to exercise and administer, according to the laws and constitution of this kingdom, all regal powers, jurisdictions, and prerogatives, to the crown and government thereof belonging."
To this his Royal Highness returned the following answer.
"My Lords and Gentlemen. The Address from the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons of Ireland, which you have presented to me, demands my warmest and earliest thanks. If any thing could add to the esteem and affection I have for the people of Ireland, it would be the loyal and affectionate attachment to the person and government of the King, my father, manifested in the Address of the two houses.
"What they have done, and their manner of doing it, is a new proof of their undiminished duty to his Majesty, of their uniform attachment to the house of Brunswick, and their constant attention to maintain inviolate the concord and connexion between the kingdoms of Great Britain and Ireland, so indispensably necessary to the prosperity, the happiness, and the liberties of both.
If in conveying my grateful sentiments on their conduct, in relation to the king, my father, and to the inseparable interest of the two kingdoms, I find it impossible to express adequately my feelings on what relates to myself, I trust you will not be the less disposed to believe, that I have an understanding to comprehend the value of what they have done, a heart that must remember, and principles that will not suffer me to abuse their confidence.
But the fortunate change which has taken place in the circumstance which gave occasion to the address agreed to by the lords and commons of Ireland, induced me to delay, for a few days, giving a final answer, trusting, that the joyful event of his majesty's resuming the personal exercise of his royal authority, may then render it only necessary for me to repeat those sentiments of gratitude and affection to the loyal and generous people of Ireland, which I feel indelibly imprinted on my heart."
On the 14th of March, the lord-lieutenant acquainted parliament, that his majesty was enabled personally to exercise the royal authority; and relied on their readiness for the usual support of government. Both houses answered by addresses of congratulation, and promises of ample support. A day of public thanksgiving was appointed, and the happy event was celebrated by public rejoicings throughout Ireland.
This appointment of the regent, unfettered, in unison with the inclination of the nation, in opposition to the orders of the British minister,
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suited not the views of the ambitious Pitt, to separate the parliament and the people, to render it an object of contempt and aversion, the easier to accomplish its extinction. While the protestant, empowered to enslave, degrade and impoverish his Catholic countrymen, the majority of the nation, submitted to the commercial and legislative restrictions of Britain, a union was far from being a desideratum with the British minister. But ingenuity exhausted to prevent the further growth of popery, America in rebellion, the situation of Ireland and America was contrasted; the protestant reflected, and the thick film of prejudice was removed. Session after session, the splendid talents of enlightened members of the Irish house of commons were strenuously directed to burst the fetters of British commercial and legislative restriction; and session after session, majorities, at the nod of the minister, repelled the novel attempt. But events came to their aid. The navies of France and Spain found employment for British men of war, different from that of the blockade of Irish ports. America successfully resisted; the standing army, withdrawn from the British isles, was occupied in its subjugation; invasion was apprehended, and the Volunteers appeared. The dread of invasion dispelled, rights, withheld from the loyalty of Ireland, offered to the rebellion of America, roused a spirit of indignation in the nation. The press spoke the language of freedom. Corporations, cities, counties, volunteer corps, above all, the Volunteer Convention at Dungannon, in