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Chap, principal subject of complaint was the practice foundyL. J cA on the law of Poyning, by which the political constitution of Ireland was rendered materially different -from that of England. Of this law, and its modification in the reign of Mary, I have spoken at the end of the thirteenth chapter. By the established practice, whence the Irish padiasnent had become little better than the register of royal edicts, the heads, or substance, of bills were, by the leave of either house, introduced; and, if admitted by a majority, laid before the viceroy and privy-council, who might totally suppress them, or certify them into England under the great seal of Ireland altered or unaltered. If they were sent back under the great seal of England without alteration, and approved by the majority of that house of the Irish parliament in which they had not originated, they passed into law by the royal assent delivered by the viceroy. When a bill was returned with alterations made in it by the British or Irish privy-council, it sometimes passed through the Irish parliament into law without further ceremony; but in general was either totally rejected, or new modelled according to the alterations, and sent on the same progress as at first.' By a law now enacted all in terference of privy-councils to alter Irish bills was abolished, and the parliament of Ireland put into the same state of independence, with respect to its legislation, as that of Britain. As acts were also passed for the limitation of the law against mutiny to two years, for the right of "Habeas corpus, and .\ for for lie independence of the judges; and as the Chap. British parliament had agreed to repeal the obnoxi- v_j^' ous bill enacted in the sixth year of George the first, by which the Irish house of peers had been deprived of their supreme judicial power in their own country, Ireland was almost universally conceived by its inhabitants to be completely emancipated, and dignified with a constitution equal to that of her great sister island.
As a token of gratitude, the commons, on the Dissent of
motion of Henrv Grattan, voted a hundred thou-ots.
sand pounds for the raising of twenty thousand seamen for the British navy; and, at the motion of Beauchamp Bagenal, they voted fifty thousand pounds, as a present, to Grattan himself, for his services in this parliamentary revolution. A distrust, however, of the concessions of the British government, as insufficient, soon appeared. To the following words in an address to the throne an objection had been made, "Gratified in those particulars, we do assure your Majesty, that no constitutional question between the two nations will any longer eotist, wfiich canintem*wpt their harmony." But on a division of the house two hundred and eleven had appeared in favour of tins paragraph, and only two against it, David Walshe and sir Samuel Bradstreet, the recorder of Dublin, a man of sound understanding, clear discernment, and cordial patriotism. Yet the opinion of the recorder was soon adopted by Henry Flood, who, on the nineteenth
T 4 of
Chap, of July, exerted his superlative eloquence, in op^^J'position to that of Henry Grattan, for a bill to declare " the sole and exclusive right of the Irish parliament to make laws in all cases whatsoever, both internal and external, for the kingdom of Ireland." On a division of the house only six voices were found in favour of Henry Flood's motion; and addresses to the king from the volunteers of Leinster, Ulster, and Connaught, concurred with the sentiments of the majority in the house of commons. The opinion of the small minority, Flood's adherents, was, that a simple repeal of the British a6t of the sixth of George the first gave not sufficient security to the independence of the Irish legislature: that, since that act had been de~ clciratory, its repeal had only removed the a5t from the British book of statutes, and left the claim of right in the British parliament precisely as it had been before the sixth year of George the first, which right had been so exercised before that period, that some laws enacted under that assumption still remained in full force: and that consequently nothing less than an express renunciation by the British parliament of all right whatsoever to legislate for Ireland could give so far complete security as national compacts can bestow. eonsumma- On the twenty-seventh of July 1782, was pro
tionofthe J , J r
revolution, rogued this famous parliament, among whose laudable acis was the repeal of the sacramental test, by which presbyterians had been excluded from
offices offices of trust under the crown. The opinion of Chap.
Henry Flood, abetted at first by so few, gained «^«J»»/ ground with rapidity in the public mind, and seemed to receive confirmation from events. A cause, removed by a writ of error from the king's bench of Ireland to that of Great-Britain, was retained and adjudged by lord Mansfield, the chief justice of the latter, subsequently to the first of June 1782, a limit prescribed by the Irish parliament, beyond which no such causes were to be determined out of this kingdom. The increasing discontents became alarming to government; and earl Temple, who, on a change of the British ministry, by the death of the marquis of Rockingham, succeeded the duke of Portland in the viceroyalty, on the fifteenth of September 1782, was earnest for procuring satisfaction to the Irish. With a magnanimity becoming the great council of a great nation, all cause of complaint on the subject was removed, by a bill introduced, and unanimously passed, on the twentysecond of January 1783, in the British parliament, "for removing and preventing all doubts, which have arisen, or may arise, concerning the exclusive rights of the parliament and courts of Ireland in matters of legislation and judicature, and for preventing any writ of error, or appeal, from any of his Majesty's courts in that kingdom, from being received, heard, and adjudged, in any of his Majesty's courts in the kingdom, of Great-Britain." The pecuniary fortunes of the two gre,at rival patriots
Chap, triots and orators, Flood and Grattan, in their ex
XXXVIII. . . , - T , . .
\. y^ 'ertions in favour ot Insh emancipation, were very different. The latter, who carried the business to a certain stage, and opposed its further progress, received as a reward fifty thousand pounds: the former, by whose exertions it was brought to a consummation, was deprived of a place under government of three thousand five hundred pounds a year.