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would cost him without a turnpike. The New River rights and pretensions in the best way they could ; Company brings water to every inhabitant of London but the clearest of all propositions would be, that the at an infinitely less price than he could dip for it out of four proprietors, among them made a complete title of the Thames. No country, in fact, is so expensive as all the fish ; and that nobody but them had the smallone which human beings are just beginning to inhabit; est title to the smallest share. This we say, in answer —where there are no roads, no bridges, no skill, no to those who contend that there is no foundation for combination of powers, and no force of capital. any system of game laws; that animals bom wild are
How, too, can any man take upon himself to say, the property of the public; and that their appropriathat he is so inditferent to his country that he will not tion is nothing but tyranny and usurpation. begin to love it intensely, when he is 5000 or 6000 In addition to these arguments, it is perhaps scarcemiles from it? And what a dreadful disease Nostal. ly necessary to add, that nothing which is worth hav, gia must be on the banks of the Missouri ! Severe | ing, which is accessible, and supplied only in limited and painful poverty will drive us all anywhere : but a quantities, could exist at all, if it was not considered wise man should be quite sure he has so irresistible a as the property of some individual. If every body plea, before he ventures on the Great or the Little might take game wherever they found it, there would Wabash. He should be quite sure that he does not soon be an end to every species of game. The advan. go there from ill temper-or to be pitied-or to be re- tage would not be extended to fresh classes, but be angretted-or from ignorance of what is to happen to nihilated for all classes. Besides all this, the privil. him-or because he is a poet—but because he has notege of killing game could not be granted without the enough to eat here, and is sure of abundance where he privilege of trespassing on landed property ; .--an inis going
tolerable evil, which would entirely destroy the comfort and privacy of a country lile.
But though a system of game laws is of great use in GAME LAWS. (EDINBURGH REVIEW, 1819.)
promoting country amusements, and may, in itself, be Three Letters on the Game Laws. Rest Fenner, Black & Co. placed on a footing of justice, its effects, we are sorry
to say, are by no means favourable to the morals of London, 1818 The evil of the Game Laws, in their present state. has It is impossible to make an uneducated man underlong been felt, and of late years has certainly rather stand in what manner a bird hatched nobody knows increased than diminished. We believe that they can- where,-to-day living in my field, to morrow in yours, not long remain in their present state ; and we are anx. -should be as strictly property as the goose whose ious to express our opinion of those changes which whole history can be traced in the most authentic they ought to experience.
and satisfactory manner, from the egg to the spit. We thoroughly acquiesce in the importance of en. The arguments upon which this depends are so concouraging those field sports which are so congenial to trary to the notions of the poor--so repugnant to their the habits of Englishmen, and which, in the present passions,-and, perhaps, so much above their com. state of society, afford the only effectúal counterbal. | prehension, that they are totally unavailing. The ance to the allurements of great towns. We cannot same man who would respect an orchard, a garden, conceive a more pernicious condition for a great na. or an hen-roost, scarcely thinks he is committing any tion, than that its aristocracy should be shut up from fault at all in invading the game.covers of his richer one year's end to another in a metropolis, while the neighbour ; and as soon as he becomes wearied of mass of its rural inhabitants are left to its factors and honest industry, his first resource is in plundering the agents. A great man returning from London to spend rich magazine of hares, pheasants, and partridgeshis summer in the country, diffuses intelligence, im- the top and bottom dishes, which on every side of his proves manners, communicates pleasure, restrains village are running and fiying before his eyes. As the extreme violence of subordinate politicians, and these things cannot be done with safety in the day, makes the middling and lower classes better acquaint. they must be done in the night ;-and in this manner ed with, and more attached to their natural leaders. a lawless marauder is often formed, who proceeds At the same time a residence in the country gives to from one infringement of law and property to another, the makers of laws an opportunity of studying those till he becomes a thoroughly bad and corrupted mem. interests which they may afterwards be called upon to ber of society. protect and arrange. Nor is it unimportant io the These few preliminary observations lead naturally character of the higher orders themselves, that they to the two principal considerations which are to be should pass a considerable part of the year in the kept in view, in reforming the game laws ;-to premidst of these their larger families; that they should serve, as far as is consistent with justice, the amuse. occasionally be thrown among simple, laborious, frugal ments of the rich, and to diminish, as much as possi. people, and be stimulated to resist the prodigality of ble, the temptations of the poor. And these ends, it courts, by viewing with their own eyes the merits and seems to us, will be best answered, the wretchedness of the poor.
1. By abolishing qualifications. 2. By giving to Laws for the preservation of game are not only of every man a property in the game upon his land, importance, as they increase the amusements of the 3. By allowing game to be bought by any body, and country, but they may be so constructed as to be per- sold by its lawful possessors.* fectly just. The game which my land teeds is certain. Nothing can be more grossly absurd than the prely mine ; or, in other words, the game which all the sent state of the game laws, as far as they concern land feeds certainly belongs to all the owners of the the qualification for shooting. In England, no man land ; and the only practical way of dividing it is, to can possibly have a legal right to kill gaine, who has give to each proprieter what he can take on his own not 100i. a-year in land rent. With us, in Scotland, ground. Those who contribute nothing to the support the rule is not quite so inflexible, though in principle of the animal, can have no possible right to a share in not very different.-But we shall speak to the case the distribution. To say of animals, that they are which concerns by far the greatest number; and cer. fere Naturá, means only, that the precise place of tainly it is scarcely possible to imagine a more absurd their birth and nurture is not known. "How they shall and capricious limitation. For what possible reason be divided, is a matter of arrangement among those is a man, who has only 901. per annum in land, not to whose collected property certainly has produced and kill the game which his own land nourishes? If the fed them; but the case is completely made out against legislature really conceives, as we have heard sur. those who have no land at all, and who cannot there. mised by certain learned squires, that a person of such fore have been in the slightest degree instrumental to a degree of fortune should be confined to profitable their production. If a large pond were divided by cer. pursuits, and debarred from that pernicious idleness tain marks into four parts, and allotted to that number into which he would be betrayed by field sports, it of proprietors, the fish contained in that pond would would then be expedient to make a qualification for be in the same sense, fera Natura. Nobody could tell bowls or skittles-to preveut landowners froin going in which particular division each carp had been born and bred." The owners would arrange their respective
# All this has since been established.
to races, or following a pack of hounds-and to pro- | at the expense of the neighbour who surrounded him. bibit to men of a certain income, every other species But, under the present game laws, if the smaller pos. of amusement as well as this. The only instance, session belongs to a qualified person, the danger of however, in which this paternal care is exercised, is intrusion is equally great as it would be under the prothat in which the amusement of the smaller land. posed alteration ; and the danger from the poacher owner is supposed to interfere with those of his richer would be the same in both cases. But if it is of such neighbour. ' He may do what he pleases, and elect great consequence to keep clear from all ivterference, any other species of ruinous idleness but that in which Inay not such a piece of land be rented or bought ?the upper classes of society are his rivals.
Or, may not the food which tempts game, be sown in Nay, the law is so excessively ridiculous in the case the same abundance in the surrounding as in the inof small landed proprietors, that on a property of less closed land? After all, it is only common justice, that than 1001. per annum, no human being has the right of he whose property is surrounded on every side by a shooting. It is not confined, but annihilated. The preserver of game, whose corn and turnips are demol. lord of the manor may be wamed off by the proprie- ished by animals preserved for the amusement of his tor; and the proprietor may be informed against by neighbour, should himself be entitled to that share of any body who sces him sporting. The case is still game which plunders upon his land. The complaint stronger in the instance of large farms. In Northum- which the landed grandee makes is this. Here is a berland, and on the borders of Scotland, there are large man who has only a twenty-fourth part of the land, capitalists who farm to the amount of two or three and he expects a twenty-fourth part of the game. He thousand per annum, who have the permission of their is so captious and litigious, thai he will not be contentdistant non-resident landlords to do what they please ed to supply his share of the food without requiring with the game, and yet who dare not fire off a gun his share of what the food produces. I want a neigh. upon their own land. Can any thing he more utterly bour who has talents only for suffering, not one who absurd and preposterous, than that the landlord and evinces such a fatal disposition for enjoying.' Upon the wealthy tenant together cannot make up a title to such principles as these, many of the game laws have the hare which is fattened upon the choicest produce been constructed, and are preserved. The interference of their land? That the landlord, who can let to farm of a very small property with a very large one; the the fertility of the land for growing wheat, cannot let critical position of one or two fields, is a very serious to farm its power of growing partridges? That he source of vexation on many other occasions besides may reap by deputy, but cannot on that manor shoot those of game. He who possesses a field in the midby deputy? Is it possible that any respectable ma- dle of my premises, may build so as to obstruct my gistrate could fine a farmer for killing a hare upon his view; and may present to me the hinder part of a own grounds with his landlord's consent, without feel. barn, instead of one of the finest landscapes in nature. ing that he was violating every teeling of common Nay, he may turn his field into tea-gardens, and desense and justice?
stroy my privacy by the introduction of every species Since the enactment of the game laws, there has of vulgar company. The legislature, in all these insprung up an entirely new species of property, which stances, has provided no remedy for the inconvenien. of course is compleiely overlooked by their provis. ces which a small property, by such intermixture, ions. An Englishman may possess a million of money may inflict upon a large one, but has secured the same in funds, or merchandize--may be the Baring or the rights to unequal proportions. It is very difficult to Hope of Europe-provide to government the suddlen conceive why these equitable principles are to be viomeans of equipping fleets and armies, and yet be with lated in the case of game alone. out the power of smiting a single partridge, though in Our securities against that rabble of sportsmen vited by the owner of the game to participate in his which the abolition of qualifications might be supamusement. It is idle to say that the difficulty may posed to produce, are, the consent of the owner of the be got over, by purchasing land: the question is, upon soil as an indispensable preliminary, guarded by heavy what principle of justice can the existence of the diffi- penalties—and the price of a certificate, rendered, culty be defended! If the right of keeping men- perhaps, greater than it is at present. It is impossiservants was confined to persons who had more than ble to conceive why the owner of the soil, if the right 1001. a-year in the funds, the difficulty might be got of game is secured to him, has not a right to sell, or over by every man who would change his landed prop grant the right of killing it to whom he pleases-just erty to that extent. But what could justify so capri- as much as he has the power of appointing whom he cious a partiality to one species of property? There pleases to kill his ducks, pigeons, and chickens. The might be some apology for such laws at the time they danger of making the poor idle, is a mere pretence. It were made; but there can be none for their not being is monopoly calling in the aid of hypocrisy, and tyran. now accommodated to the changes which time has ny veiling itself in the garb of philosophical humani. introduced. If you choose to exclude poverty from tý. A poor man goes to wakes, fairs, and horse-races, this species of amusement, and to open it to wealth, without pain and penalty ; a little shopkeeper, when why is it not opened to every species of wealth? his work is over, may go to a bull-bait, or to the cockWhat amusemeni can there be morally lawful to an pit ; but the idea of his pursuing an hare, eren with holder of turnip land, and criminal in a possessor of the consent of the land-owner, fills the Bucolic senator exchequer bills? What delights ought to be tolerated with the most lively apprehensions of relaxed indus. to long annuities, from which wheat and beans should try and ruinous dissipation. The truth is, it a poor be excluded? What matters whether it is scrip or man does not offend against morals or religion, and short-horned cattle? If the locus quo is conceded—if supports himself and his family without assistance the trespass is waived-and if the qualification for any the law has nothing to do with his amusements. The amusement is wealth, let it be any provable wealth real barriers against increase of sportsmen (if the pro
posed alteration were admitted), are, as we hare be Dives agris, dives positis in fænore nummis.
fore said, the prohibition of the landowner; the tax te
the state for a certificate; the necessity of labouring It will be very easy for any country gentleman who for support.-Whoever violates none of these rights, wishes to monopolize to himself the flcasure of shoot- and neglects none of these duties in his sporting, sports ing, to let to his tenant every other right attached to without crime ; and to punish him would be gross and the land, except the right of killing game ; and it will scandalous tyranny. be equally easy, in the formation of a new game act, The next alteration which we would propose is, that to give to the landlord a summary process against his game should be made property ; that is, that every tenant, if such tenant fraudulently exercises the privi- man should have a right to the game found upon his leges he has agreed to surrender.
land—and that the violation of it should be punished as The case which seems most to alarm country gen. poaching now is, by pecuniary penalties, and summatlemen, is that of a person possessing a few acres in ry conviction before magistrates. This change in the the very heart of a manor, who might, by planting game laws would be an additional defence of game; food ol' which they are fond, allure the game into his for the landed proprietor has now no other remedy uwa little domain, and thus reap av harvest prepared against the qualified intruder upon his game, than an
action at law for a trespass on the land ; and if the • The first and most palpable effect has naturally been an trespasser has received no notice, this can hardly be exaltation of all the savage and desperate features in the poschcalled any remedy at all. It is now no unconmon
er's character. The war between him and the gamekeeper has practice for persons who have the exterior, and per hesitate perhaps at killing his fellow man, when the alternative
necessarily become a “bellum internecirum.” A marauder may haps the fortunes of gentlemen, as they are travelling is only six months imprisonment in the county jail; but when from place to place, in shoot over manors where they the alternative is to overcome the keeper, or to be torn from his have no property, and from which, as strangers, they family and connections, and seut to hard labour at the Antipodes cannot have been warned. In such a case (which we we cannot be much surprised th murders and midnight comrepeat again, is by no means one of rare occurrence), bats have considerably increased this season; or that informa. it would, under the reformed system, be no more diffi- tion such as the following hus frequently enriched the columns cult for the lord of the soil to proteci bis game, than it
of the country newspapers.
* " POACHING.–Richard Barnett was on Tuesday convicted would be to protect his geese and ducks. But though before Richard Clutterbuck, Esq., of keeping and using engines game should be considered as property, it should still or wires for the destruction of game in the parish of Dunkerton, be considered as the lowest species of property-be and fined £5. He was taken into custody by C. Coates, keeper cause it is in its nature more vague and mutable than to Sir Charles Bamfylde, Bart., who found upon him 17 wireother species of property, and because depredations snares. The new aci that has just passed against these illegal are carried on ai a distance from the dwelling, and practices, seems only to have irritated the offenders, and made without personal alarm to the proprietors. It would them more daring and desperate. The following is a copy of an be very easy to increase the penalties, in proportion magistrates, and otheremivent characters in this neighborhood. to the number of offences committed by the same indi • " TAKE NOTICE.-We have lately heard and seen that there vidual,
is an act passed, and whatever poacher is caught destroying the The punishments which country gentlemen expect game is to be transported for seven years. This is English by making game property, are punishments affixed 10 liberty! offences of a much higher order ; but country gentle.
*** Now, we do swear to each other, that the first of our conmen must not be allowed to legislate exclusively on pany that this law is inflicted on, that there shall not one gentlethis, more than on any other subject. The very men. in number, and we will burn every gentleman's house of note.
man's seat in our country escape the rage of fire. We are nine tion of hares and pariridges in t e country, too ollen The first that impeaches shall be shot. We have suorn not to puts an end to common humanity and common sense impeach. You may think it a threat, but they will find it reaGame must be protected; but protected without vio- lity. The game-laws were 100 revere before. The Lord of all lating those principles of justice, and that adaptation men sent these animals for the peasants as well as for the prince. of punishment to crime, which (incredible as it may God will not let his people be oppressed. He will assist us in appear), are of infinitely greater importance than the our undertaking, and we will execute it with caution." ' — Bath amusemements of country gentlemen.
* DEATH OF A Poacher-On the evening of Saturday se'euWe come now to the sale of game.—The foundation night, about eight or nine o'clock, a body of poachers, seven in on which the propriety of' allowing this partly rests, is number, assembled by mutual agreement on the estate of the the impossiibility of preventing it. There exists, and Hon. John Durton, at Sherborne, Gloucestershire, for the purhas sprung up since the game laws, an enormous mass pose of taking hares and other game. With the assistance of two of wealth, which has nothing to do with land. Do the dogs, and some nets and snares which they had brought with country gentlemen imagine that it is in the power of them, they had succeeded in catching nine hares, and were carhuman laws to deprive the three per cents of phea keeper and seven others who were engaged with him in patr !
rying them away, when they were discovered by the gamesants? That there is upon earth, air, or sea, a single ing the different covers, in order to protect the game from flavour (cost what crime it may to procure it), that nightly depredators. Immediately on perceiving the poachers, mercantile opulence will not procure? Increase the the keeper summoned them in a civil and peaceable manner to difficulty, and you enlist vanity on the side of luxury; give up their nanes, dogs, implements,&c. they had with them, and make that to be sought for as a display of wealth, and the game they had taken ; at the same time assuring them which was before valued only for the graiification of that his party had tire-arıs (which were produced for the purappetite The law may muliiply penalties by reams. them the folly of resistance, as, in the event of an affray, they
pose of convincing and alarming them), and representing to Squires may tret and justices may commit, and game must inevitably be overpowered by superior numbers, even keepers and poachers continue their nocturnal wars without fire-arms, which they were determined not to resort to There must be game on Lord Mayor's day, do whar unless compelled in self-detence. Notwithstanding this remonyou will. You may multiply the crimes by which it st mce of the keeper, the men unanimously refused to give up is procured ; but nothing can arrest its inevitable pro on any terms, declaring that if they were followeal
, they would gress, from the wood of the esquire to the spit of the give them a "brush,” and would repel force by force. The citizen
poachers then directly took off their great coats, threw them The late law for preventing the sale of game down with the game, &c., behind them, and approached the produced some little temporary difficulty in London keepers in an attitude of attack. A smart contest instantly enat the beginning of the season. The poulterers were sued, both parties using only the sticks or bludgeons they caralarmed and came to some resolutions, but the alarm ried: and such was the confusion during the battle, that some of soch began to subside, and the difficulties to vanish. the keepers were occasionally struck by their own comrades in In another season the law will be entirely nugatory mistake for their opponents. After they had fought in this and forgotten. The experiment was tried of increasca manner about eight or ten minutes, one of ihe poachers, named
Robert Simmons, received a violent blow upon his left temple, severity; and a law passed to punish poachers with which felled him to the ground, where he lay, crying out mur. transportation who were caught poaching in the night der, and asking for mercy. The keepers very humanely desired time with arms. What has the consequence been !--that all violence might cease on both sides: upon which three of Noi a cessation of poaching, but a succession of vil. the poachers took to flight and escaped, and the remaining lage guerillas ; an internecive war between gamekeep three, together with Simmons, were secured by the keepers. ers and marauders of game ;-the whole country flung Simmons, by the assistance of the other men, walked to the into brawls and convulsions, for the unjust and exorbi kerper's house, where he was ; laced in a chair: but he soon
after died. His death was no doubt caused by the pressure of tant pleasures of country gentlemen. The poacher blood upon the brain, occasioned by the rupture of a vesseltrom hardly believes he is doing any wrong in taking par- the blow he had received. The three poachers who had been tridges and pheasants. He would admit the justice of taken were committed to Northleach prison. The inquest pou being transported for stealing sheep; and his courage the body of Simmons was taken on Monday, before W. Triuge, in such a transaction would be impaired by a con- Gent., Coroner; and the above account is extracted from the sciousness he was doing wrong : but he has no such evidence given upon that occasion. The poachers were all feeling in taking game; and the preposterous punish. himself with the thick part of a trail
, madle of firm, knotied crab.
armed with bludgeons, except the deceased, who had provided ment of transporiation makes him desperate, and not tree, and pointed at the extremity, in order to thrust with, if timid. Single poachers are gathered into large compa- occasion required. The deceased was an athletic, muscular dies for their mutual protection; and go out, not only man, very active, and about twenty-eight years of age. Here with the intention of taking game, but of detending sided at Bowle, in Oxfords hire, and has leit a wite, but no child what they take with their lives. Such feelings soon The three prisoners were heard in evidence; and all concurred produce a rivalry of personal courage, and the thirst of in stating that the keepers were in no way lilameable, and auri
buted their disaster to their own indiscretion and imprudence. rerenge between the villagers and the agents of power. Several of the keepers' party were so much beat as to be low We extract the following passages on this subject confined to their beds. The two parties are said to be total from the Three Letters on the Game Laws:
strangers to each other, consequently no malice prepeuse could
have existed between them; and as it appeared to the jury, after · But then, in order to secure a sufficient breed of game for a most minute and deliberate investigation, that the confusion the supply of the market, in fair and open competition, it will during the affray was so great, that the deceased was as likely to be necessary to authorize a certain number of persons, likely be struck by one of his own party as by the keepers', they to breed game for sale, to take and dispose of it when reared at returned a verdict of-Manslaughter against some person or their expense. For this purpose, I would suggest the propriety persons unknown.",
of permitting by law occupiers of land to take and kill game, • Wretched as the first of these productions is, I think it for sale or otherwise, on their own occupations only, unless, (if scarcely to be denied, that both its spirit and its probable conse- tenants) they are specifically prohibited by agreement with quences are wholly to be ascribed to the exasperation naturally the lai ord; reserving the game and the power of taking it consequent upon the severe enactment just alluded to. And the to himself, (as is now frequently done in leases.) last case is at least a strong proof that severity of enactment is mission should not, of course, operate during the current leaquite inadequate to correct the evil.'—(p. 356-359.)
ses, unless by agreement. With this precaution, nothing
could be fairer than such an enactment; for it is certainly at Poaching will exist in some degree, let the laws be the expense of the occupier that the game is raised and mainwhat they may; but the most certain method of check: abatement of rent upon agreement, or by permission to take
tained: and unless he receive an equivalent for it, either by ing the poacher seems to be by underselling him. It and dispose of it, he is certainly an injured man. Whereas it game can be lawfully sold, the quantity sent to market is perfectly just that the owner of the land should have the will be increased, the price lowered, and, with that, option either to increase his rent by leaving the disposal of his the profits and temptations of the poacher. Not only game to his tenant, or vice versa. Game would be held to be vould the prices of the poacher be lowered, but we (as in fact it is) an outgoing from the land, like tithe and other much doubt if he would find any sale at all. Licenses land would either be let game-free, or a special reservation of
burdens, and therefore to be considered in a bargain; and the to sell game might be confined to real poulterers, and it made by agreement. real occupiers of a certain portion of land. It might • Moreover, since the breed of game must always depeod be rendered penal to purchase it from any but licensed upon the occupier of the land, who may, and frequently does, persons; and in this way the facility of the lawful, destroy every head of it, or prevent its coming to maturity, and the danger of the unlawful trade, would either unless it is considered in his rent; the license for which I am annihilate the poacher's trade, or reduce his prices so
now contending, by affording an inducement to preserve the much, that it would be hardly worth his while to carry etfect in increasing the stock of game in other parts, and in the
breed in particular spots, would evidently have a considerable What poulterer in London, or in any of the country at large. There would be introduced a general sys. large towns, would deal with poachers, and expose tem of protection depending upon individual interest, instead himself to indictment for receiving stolen goods, when of a general system of destruction. I have, therefore, very he might supply his customers at fair prices by deal. little doubt that the provision here recommended would, upon ing with the lawful proprietor of game? Opinion is of the whole, add facilities to the amusements of the sportsman, more power than law. Such conduct would soon be rather than subtract from them. A sportsman without land come infamous; and every respectable tradesman might also hire from the occupier of a large tract of land the would be shamed out of it. The consumer himself privilege of shooting over it, which would answer to the latter
as well as sending his game to the murket. In short, he might would rather buy his game of a poulterer at an in- in various ways get a return, to which he is well entitled for crease of price, ihan pick it up clandestinely, and at the expense and trouble incurred in rearing and preserving a great risk, though a somewhat smaller price, from that particular species of stock upon his land.'—(p.337–339.) porters and booth-keepers. Give them a chance of getting it fairly, and they will not get it unfairly. At in great manors on a single day. We think it highly
There are sometiines 400 or 500 head of game killed present, no one has the slightest shame at violating a law which every body feels to be absurd and unjust.
probable, the greater part of this harvest (if the game Poultry-houses are sometimes robbed ;—but stolen laws were altered), would go to the poulterer, to purpoultry is rarely offered to sale ;-at least, nobody
chase poultry or fish for the ensuing London season. pretends that the shops of poulterers, and the tables Nobody is so poor and so distressed as men of very of moneyed gentlemen, are supplied by these means. large fortunes, who are fond of making an unwise dis Out of one hundred geese that are consumed at Mi: play to the world ; and if they had recourse to these chaelmas, ninety-nine come into the jaws of the con
means of supplying game, it is impossible to suppose sumer by honest means ;—and yet, if it had pleased that the occupation of the poacher could be continued. the country gentlemen to have goose laws as well as
--The smuggler can compete with the spirit-merchant, game laws ;-if goose-keepers had been appointed, but where there is no duty to be saved, the mere thief
on account of the great duty imposed by the revenue ; and the sale and purchase of this savoury bird prohibited, the same enjoyments would have been pro: halter round his neck-the man of whom it is disrepu
-the man who brings the article to market with an cured by the crimes and convictions of the poor; and table and penal to buy—who hazards life, liberty, and the periodical gluttony of Michaelmas have been ren. dered as guilty and criminal, as it is indigestible and property, to procure the articles which he sells; such unwholesome. Upon this subject we shall quote a
an adventurer can never be long the rival of him who passage from the very sensible and spirited letters honestly and fairly produces the articles in which he before us.
deals.--Fines, imprisonments, concealment, loss of
character, are great deductions from the profits of any In favourable situations, game would be reared and preser- trade to which they attach, and great discouragements ved for the express purpose of regularly supplying the market to its pursuit. in fair and open competition; which would so reduce its price, It is not the custom at present for gentlemen to sell that I see no reason why a partridge should be dearer than their game ; but the custom would soon begin, and a rabbit, or a hare and pheasant than a duck or goose. This is public
opinion soon change. It is not unusual for men about the proportion of price which the animals bear to each of fortune to contract with their gardeners to supply othor in France, where game can be legally sold, and is regu- their own table, and to send the residue to market, or larly brought to market; and where, by the way, game is as plentiful as in any cultivated country in Europe. The price to sell their venison ; and the same thing might be so reduced would never be enough to compensate the risk and done with the manor. If game could be bought, it penalties of the unlawful poacher, who must therefore be dri- would not be sent in presents :-barn-door fowls are ven out of the market. Doubtless, the great poulterers of never so sent, precisely for this reason. London and the commercial towns, who are the principal insti
The price of game would, under the system of laws continue so, as they would fairly and lawfully procure game introduction of foreign game, the sale of which, at gators of poaching, would cease to have any temptation to of which we are speaking, be further lowered by the for their customers at a cheaper rate froin the regular breeders. They would, as they now do for rabbits and wild fowl, present prohibited, would tend very much to the precontract with persons to rear and preserve them for the regu- servation of English game by underselling the poacher lar supply of their shops, which would be a much more commo-It would not be just, if it were possible, to confine dious and satifactory, and less hazardous way for them,
than any of the valuable productions of nature to the use of the irregular and dishonest and corrupting methods now pur- one class of men, and to prevent them from becoming sued. It is not saying very much in favour of human nature the subject of barter, when the proprietor wished so to assert,that
men in respectable stations of society had rather to exchange them. It would be just as reasonable procure the same ends by honest than dishonest means. would all the temptations to offend against the game-laws, that the consumption of salmon should be confined lo arising from the change of society, together with the long the proprietors of that sort of fishery—that the use of chain of moral and political mischiefs, at once disappear.
charr should be limited to the inhabitants of the lakes
-that maritime Englishmen should alone eat oysters BOTANY BAY, (EDINBURGH LEVIEW, 1810.) and lobsters, as that every other class of the community than landowners should be prohibited from 1. A Statistical, Historical, and Political Description of the the acquisition of game.
Colony of New South Wales, and its dependent Settlements
in Van Diemen's Land: with a particular Enumeration of It will be necessary, whenever the game laws are
the Advantages which these Colonies offer for Emigration, revised, that some of the worst punishments now in.
and their Superiority in many respects ocer those possessed flicted for an infringement of these laws should be re. by the United States of America. By W.C. Wentworth, F.sq., pealed. To transport a inan for seven years, on ac a Native of the Colony. Whittaker. London, 1819. count of partridges, and to harass a poor wretched 2. Letter to Viscount Sidmouth, Secretary of State for the peasant in the Crown Office, are very preposterous Home Department, on the Transportation Laus, the State of punishments for such offences; humanity revolts the Hulks, and of the Colonies in New South Wales. By the against them—they are grossly tyrannical--and it is Hon. Henry Grey Bennet, M. P. Ridgway. London, 1819, disgraceful that they should be suffered to remain on 3. O'Hara's History of New South Wales. Hatchard, London, our statute books. But the most singular of all abuses, 1818. is the new class of punishments which the squirarchy
This land of convicts and kangaroos is beginning to have themselves enacted against depredations on rise into a very fine and flourishing settlement :-And game. The law says, that an unqualified man who great indeed must be the natural resources, and splen. kills a pheasant, shall pay five pounds; but the squire did the endowments of that land that has been able to says he shall be shot ;-and accordingly he places a survive the system of neglect* and oppression expespring-gun in the path of the poacher, and does all he rienced from the mother country, and the series of ig: can to take away his life. The more humane and norant and absurd governors that have been selected mitigated squire mangles him with traps ; and the for the administration of its affairs. But mankind supra-fine country gentleman only detains him in ma- live and flourish not only in spite of storms and tem. chines, which prevent his escape, but do not lacerate their captive. for the gross illegality of such proceed. vious to experience) in spite of colonial secretaries ex
pests, but (which could not have been anticipated preings, there can be no reasonable doubt. Their immo: pressly paid to watch over their interests. The supine. rality and cruelty are equally clear: If they are not hess and profligacy of public officers cannot always put down by some declaratory law, it will be absolute. overcome the amazing energy with which human be. ly necessary that the judges, in their invaluable cir. ings pursue their happiness, nor the sagacity with cuits of Oyer and Terminer, should leave two or three which they determine on the means by which that of his majesty's squires to a fate too vulgar and in- end is to be promoted. Be it our care, however, to redelicate to be alluded to in this journal.
cord for the future inhabitants of Australasia, the po. Men have certainly a clear right to defend their pro- litical sufferings of their larcenous forefathers; and let perty ; but then it must be by such means as the law them appreciate, as they ought, that energy which allows :-their houses by pistols, their fields by actions founded a mighty empire in spite of the afflicting blun. for trespass, their game by information. There is an ders and marvellous cacæconomy of their govem. end of law, if every man is to measure out his punishment. ment for his own wrong. Nor are we able to distin.
Botany Bay is situated in a fine climate, rather Asi. guish between the guilt of two persons,—the one of atic than European,--with a great variety of temperwhom deliberately shoots a man whom he sees in ature,—but favourable on the whole to health and life. his fields—the other of whom purposely places such It, conjointly with Van Diemen's Land, produces instruments as he knows will shoot trespassers upon coal in great 'abundance, fossil salt, slate, líme, plun. his ficlds. Better that it should be lawful to kill a bago, potter's clay; iron ; white, yellow.and brilliant trespasser face to face, than to place engines which topazes ; alum and copper. These are all the imporwill kill him. The trespasser may be a child—a wo-tant fossil productions which have been hitherto disman-a son or friend. The spring-gun cannot ac- covered: but the epidermis of the country has hardly commodate itself to circumstances,-the squire or the
as yet been scratched; and it is most probable that game-keeper may.
the immense mountains which divide the eastern and These, then, are our opinions respecting the altera. western settlements, Bathurst and Sydney, must tions in the game laws, which, as they now stand, are abound with every species of mineral wealth. The perhaps the only system which could possibly render harbours are admirable ; and the whole world, perthe possession of game so very insecure as it now is. haps, cannot produce two such as those of Port JackWe would give to every man an absolute property in son and Derwent. The former of these is land-locked the game upon his land, with full power to kill-to for fourteen miles in length, and of the most irregular permit others to kill—and to sell ;-we would punish form : its soundings are more than sufficient for the any violation of that property by summary conviction, largest ships ; and all the navies of the world might and pecuniary penalties-rising in value according to ride in safety within it. In the harbour of Derwent the number of offences. This would of course abolish there is a road-stead forty-eight miles in length, com. all qualifications ; and we sincerely believe it would pletely land-locked ;-varying in breadth from eight lessen the profits of selling game illegally, so as very to two miles, in depth from
thirty to four fathoms,materially to lessen the number of poachers. It would and affording the best anchorage the whole way. make game, as an article of food, accessible to all
The mean heat, during the three summer months, classes, without infringing the laws. It would limit December, January, and February, is about 80° at the amusement of country gentlemen within the
The heat which such a degree of the thermoboundaries of justice-and would enable the magis- meter would seem to indicate, is considerably tempertrate cheerfully and conscientiously to execute laws, ed by the sea-breeze, which blows with considerable of the moderation and justice of which he must be tho-force from nine in the morning till seven in the eve. roughly convinced. To this conclusion, too, we have ning. The three autumn months are March, April, no doubt we shall come at the last. After many years and May, in which the thermometer varies from 550 of scutigeral folly-loaded prisons-nightly battles
at night to 75o at noon. The three winter months are poachers te upted—and families ruined, these princi- June, July, and August. During this interval, the ples will finally prevail, and make law once more co-mornings and evenings are very chilly, and the nights incident with reason and justice.
excessively cold; hoar-frosts are frequent ; ice, half * In the course of the last year, no fewer than twelve hun. the mean temperature, at daylight, is from 40° to 45°,
an inch thick, is found twenty miles from the coast; besides those who ran away from their families for the fear of and at noon from 55° to 60°. In the three months of commitment. This is no slight quantity of misery.
* One and no small excuse for the misconduct of colonial secretaries is, the enormous quantity of business by which they are distracted. There should be two or three colonial secretaries instead of one: the office is dreadfully overweighted. The government of the colonies is commonly a series of blun