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General character of thể Irish. 429 time, which they seldom assemble without enjoy: ing; not, indeed, with iron weapons, but with clubs, which they always carry, and frequently and skilfully use. When not driven by necessity. to labour, they willingly consume whole days in: sloth, or as willingly employ them in riot ; strange diversity of nature ! to love indolence, and hate quiet-to be reuuced to slavery, but not yet to obedience.
"Who will call this people civilized, or wonder that they are turbulent? who confide in the eine piric promising to cure so complicated a disorder by a single specific? It is but too plain, that there is something to be lamented, and, if possible, changed, in the character of the nation-much in its habits--more in the accidental circumstances in wbich it languishes; and it is also evident, that no individual remedy can reach and reform evils so heterogeneous. Party indeed is blind, and ignorance adventurous; but when the state of Ireland is hereafter discussed in the imperial senate, we trust that few may be found of the prejudiced, and none of the ignorant.”
In passing through Ireland, a stranger will be struck by the crowds that attend funerals, and by the cries of the mourners, though these are less frequent than they used to be. The diet of the peasantry consists chiefly of potatoes and milk, which is found to be very wholesome and nourishing; and their habitations, especially in the south, are often only wretched hovels of mud. Fine healthy children run out in a state of nature to gaze upon the passing stranger. The amusements of the upper classes arc similar to those of the same rank in England ; but those of the common people offer many shades of discrimination; for instance, the wake that precedes a funeral is a grand source of joy and amusement. These discrepancies, however, do not deteriorate, they only diversify; and Ireland takes her stand by the side of her elder sister, with all the dignified pride of conscious equality and acknowledged desert. They are now united; and may the description of the Latin bard, in reference to a different sort of union, be true of this:
Felices ter et amplius
Hor. i. Od. 13.
2. Extract from Mr. Curran's Speech on Pensions. : :, ... . "THIS polyglot of wealth, this museum of curiosities, the pension list, embraces every link in the human chain, every description of men, women and children, from the exalted excellence of a Hawke or a Rodney, to the debased situation of the lady who humbleth herself that she may be exalted. But the lessons it inculcates forms its greater perfection :-it teaches, that sloth and vice may eat that bread which virtue and honesty may starve for after they have earned it. It teaches the idle and dissolute to look up for that support which they are too proud to stoop and earn. It directs the minds of men to an entire reliance on the ruling power of the state, who feeds the ravens of the royal aviary, that cry continually for food. It teaches them to imitate those saints on the pension list, that are like the lilies of the field-they toil not, neither do they spin, and yet are arrayed like Solomon in his glory. In fine, it teaches a lesson which indeed they might have learned from Epictetus--that it is sometimes good not to be over virtuous: it shews that in proportion as our distresses increase, the munificence of the crown increases also--in proportion as our clothes are rent, the royal mantle is extended over us.
“ BUT, notwithstanding the pension list, like charity, covers a multitude of sins, give me leave to consider it as coming home to the members of this house-give me leave to say, that the crown in extending is charity, its liberality, its profusion, is laying a foundation for the independence of parliament; for hereafter, instead of orators or patriots accounting for their conduct to such mean and unworthy persons as free-holders, they will learn to despise them, and look to the first man in the state, and they will by so doing have this security for their independence, that while any man in the kingdom has a shilling they will not want one.
“ SUPPOSE at any future period of time the boroughs of Ireland should decline from their present fourishing and prosperous state--suppose they should fall into the hands of persons who should wish to drive a profitable commerce, by having members of parliament to hire or let; in such a case a secretary would find great difficulty if the proprietors of members should enter into a combination to form a monopoly ; to prevent which in time, the wisest way is to purchase up the raw material, young members of parliament just rough from grass, and when they are a little bitted, and he has got a pretty stud, perhaps of seventy, he may laugh at the slave-merchant; some of them he may teach to sound through the nose, like a barrel organ; some, in the. course of a few months, might be taught to cry hear! hear! some, chair! chair! upon occasion, though, those latter might create a little confusion, if they were to forget whether they were calling inside or outside of those doors. Again, he might have some so trained that he need only pull a string, and up gets a repeating member; and if they were
433 . so dull that they could neither speak or make orations, (for they are different thing3) he might have them taught to dance, pedibus ire in sententia.—This improvement might be extended; he might have them dressed in coats and shirts all of one colour, and of a Sunday he might march them to church two by two, to the great edification of the people and the honour of the christian religion; afterwards, like the ancient Spartans, or the fraternity at Kilmainham, they might dine all together in a large hall. Good heaven! what a sight to see them feeding in public upon public viands, and talking of public subjects for the benefit of the public, It is a pity they are not immortal; but I hope they will flourish as a corporation, and that pensioners will beget pena :: sioners to the end of the chapter.”
· MR. PITT'S LETTER TO THE PRINCE OF WALES,
The proceedings in parliament being now brought to a point, which will render it necessary to propose to the house of conmmons, the particular 'measures to be taken for supplying the defects of the personal exercise of the royal authority, during the present interval, and your royal highness having some time since signified your pleasure, that any communications on this subject should be in writing, I take the liberty , of respectfully entreating your royal highness's permission,
to submit to your consideration the outlines of the plan, which his majesty's confidential servants humbly conceive VOL. II.