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usages, institutions, habits, and affections of march, and mix with the ranks of the offend. the community. A popular revolution would ers, that they may be enabled to reclaim anıl overthrow the monarchy and the aristocracy; repress them, and save both them and themand even if it were not true that revolution selves from a sure and shameful destruction. propagates revolution, as waves gives rise to They have no longer strength to overawe or waves, till the agitation is stopped by the iron repel either party by a direct and forcible atboundary of despotism, it would still require tack; and must work, therefore, by gentle ages of anxious discomfort, before we could and conciliatory means, upon that which is build up again that magnificent fabric, which most dangerous, most flexible, and most capanow requires purification rather than repair; ble of being guided to noble exertions. Likeihe or secure that permanency to our new estab. Sabine women of old, they must throw themlishments, without which they could have no selves between the kindred combatants; and other good quality.
stay the fatal feud, by praises and embraces, Such we humbly conceive to be the course, and dissuasives of kindness and flattery. and the causes, of the evils which we believe Even those who do not much love or care to be impending. It is time now to inquire for the people, are now called upon 10 pacify whether there be no remedy. If the whole them, by granting, at least, all that can reasonnation were actually divided into revolution- ably be granted, and not only to redress their ists and high-monarchy men, we do not see Grievances, but to comply with their Desires, how they could be prevented from fighting, in so far as they can be complied with, with and giving us the miserable choice of a des- less hazard than must evidently arise from potism or a tumultuary democracy. Fortu- disregarding them. nately, however, this is not the case. There We do not say, therefore, that a thorough is a third party in the nation-small, indeed, reconciliation between the Whig royalists in point of numbers, compared with either of and the great body of the people is desirable the others-and, for this very reason, low, we merely—but that it is indispensable: since it fear, in present popularity—but essentially is a dream-a gross solecism and absurdity, powerful from talents and reputation, and cal to suppose, that such a party should exist, culated to become both popular and authori- unless supported by the affections and approtative, by the fairness and the firmness of its bation of the people. The advocates of preprinciples. This is composed of the Whig rogative have the support of prerogative; and Royalists of England,-men who, without for- they who rule by corruption and the direct getting that all government is from the peo- agency of wealth, have wealth and the means ple, and for the people, are satisfied that the of corruption in their hands:—But the friends rights and liberties of the people are best of national freedom must be recognised by maintained by a regulated hereditary mon- the nation. If the Whigs are not supporteil archy, and a large, open aristocracy; and who by the people, they can have no support; are as much averse, therefore, from every at- and, therefore, if the people are seduced away tempt to undermine the throne, or to discredit from them, they must just go after them and the nobles, as they are indignant at every pro- bring them back: And are no more to be exject to insult or enslave the people. In the cused for leaving them to be corrupted by better days of the constitution, this party Demagogues, than they would be for leaving formed almost the whole ordinary opposition, them to be oppressed by tyrants. If a party and bore no inconsiderable proportion to that is to exist at all, therefore, friendly at once io of the courtiers. It might be said too, to have the liberties of the people and the integrity with it, not only the greater part of those who of the monarchy, and holding that liberty is were jealous of the prerogative, but all that best secured by a monarchical establishment, great mass of the population which was ap- it is absolutely necessary that it should posparently neutral and indifferent to the issue sess the confidence and attachment of ibe of the contest. The new-sprung factions, people; and if it appear at any time to have however, have swallowed up almost all this lost it, ihe first of all its duties, and the necesdisposable body; and have drawn largely sary prelude to the discharge of all the rest, from the ranks of the old constitutionalists is to regain it, by every effort consistent with themselves. In consequence of this change probity and honour. of circumstances, they can no longer act with Now, it may be true, that the present alieneffect, as a separate party; and are far too ation of the body of the people from the old weak to make head, at the same time, against constitutional champions of their freedom, the overbearing influence of the Crown, and originated in the excesses and delusion of the the rising pretensions of the people. It is nec- people themselves; but it is not less true, that essary, therefore, that they should now leave the Whig royalists have increased that alienthis attitude of stern and defying mediation; ation by the haughtiness of their deportment and, if they would escape being crushed by the marked displeasure with which they along with the constitution on the collision have disavowed most of the popular proceed. of the two hostile bodies, they must identify ings—and the tone of needless and imprudent themselves cordially with the better part of distrust and reprobation with which they have one of them, and thus soothe, ennoble, and treated pretensions that were only partly incontrol it, by the infusion of their own spirit, admissible. They have given too much way and the authority of their own wisdom and to the offence which they naturally received experience. Like faithful generals, whose from the rudeness and irreverence of the terms troops have mutinied, they must join the l in which their grievances were frequently
stated; and have felt too proud an indignation We, in short, are for the monarchy ard the when they saw vulgar and turbulent men pre- aristocracy of England, as the only sure supsume to lay their unpurged hands upon the ports of a permanent and regulated freedoın : sacred ark of the constitution. They have But we do not see how either is now to be disdained too much to be associated with preserved, except by surrounding them with coarse coadjutors, even in the good work of the affection of ihe people. The admirers of resistance and reformation; and have hated arbitrary power, blind to the great lesson too virulently the demagogues who have in which all Europe is now holding out to them, flamed the people, and despised too heartily have attempted to dispense with this protec the people who have yielded 10 so gross a de- tion; and the demagogues have taken advan. lusion. All this feeling, however, though it tage of their folly to excite the people to with. may be natural, is undoubtedly both misplaced draw it altogether. The true friends of the and imprudent. The people are, upon the constitution must now bring it back; and must whole, both more moral and more intelligent reconcile the people to the old monarchy and than they ever were in any former period; and the old Parliament of their land, by restraining therefore, if they are discontented, we may be the prerogative within its legitimate bounds, sure they have cause for discontent: if they and bringing back Parliament to its natural have been deluded, we may be satisfied that habits of sympathy and concord with its conthere is a mixture of reason in the sophistry stituents. The people, therefore, though it by which they have been perverted. All may be deluded, must be reclaimed by genthe demands may not be reasonable; and tleness, and treated with respect and indul
may be just in principle, it gence. All indications, and all feelings of may, as yet, be impracticable to comply. But jealousy or contempt, must be abjured. What. all are not in either of these predicaments; ever is to be granted, should be granted with though we can only now afford to make par- cordial alacrity; and all denials should be ticular mention of one: and one, we are con- softened with words and with acts of kind. cerned to say, on which, though of the great- ness. The wounds that are curable, should est possible importance, the people have of be cured; those that have festered more deeply late found but few abettors among the old should be cleansed and anointed; and, into friends of the constitution, we mean that of a such as it may be impossible to close, the Reform in the representation. Upon this patient should be allowed to pour any innopoint, we have spoken largely on former oc- cent balsam, in the virtues of which he becasions; and have only to add that, though we lieves. The irritable state of the body politic can neither approve of such a reform as some will admit of no other treatment.—Incisions very popular persons have suggested, nor and cauteries would infallibly bring on conbring ourselves to believe that any reform vulsions and insanity. would accomplish all the objects that have We had much more to say; but we must been held out by its most zealous advocates, close here: Nor indeed could any warning we have always been of opinion that a large avail those who are not aware already. He and liberal reform should be granted. The must have gazed with idle eyes on the recent reasons of policy which have led us to this course of events, both at home and abroad, conviction, we have stated on former occa- who does not see that ro government can now sions. But the chief and the leading reason subsist long in England, that is not bottomed for supporting the proposal at present is, that in the affection of the great body of the peothe people are zealous for its adoption; and ple; and who does not see, still more clearly, are entitled to this gratification at the hands that the party of the people is every day gainof their representatives. We laugh at the ing strength, from the want of judgment and idea of there being any danger in disfranchis- of feeling in those who have defied and ining the whole mass of rotten and decayed sulted it, and from the coldness and alienation boroughs, or communicating the elective fran- of those who used to be their patrons and dechise to a great number of respectable citi- fenders. If something is not done to concilizens: And as to the supposed danger of the ate, these heartburnings must break out into mere example of yielding to the desires of deadly strise; and impartial history will asthe people, we can only say, that we are far sign to each of the parties their share of the more strongly impressed with the danger of great guilt that will be incurred. The first thwarting them. The people have far more and the greatest outrages will probably prowealth and far more intelligence now, than ceed from the people themselves; but a they had in former times; and therefore they deeper curse will fall on the corrupt and suought to have, and they must have, more po- percilious government that provoked them: litical
power. The danger is not in yielding Nor will they be held blameless, who, when to this swell, but in endeavouring to resist it
. they might have repressed or moderated the If properly watched and managed, it will only popular impulse, by attempting to direct it, bear the vessel of the state more proudly and chose rather to take counsel of their pride, and steadily along ;-if neglected, or rashly op- to stand by, and see the constitution torn to posed, it will dash her on the rocks and shoals pieces, because they could not approve en. of a sanguinary revolution.
tirely of either of the combatants ! 77
The History of Ireland. By John O'DRISCOL. In two vols. 8vo. pp. 815. London: 1827.*
A Good History of Ireland is still a deside-, even a partial memorial of the truth. That ratum in our literature ;-and would not only truth is, no doubt, for the most part, at once be interesting, we think, but invaluable. revolting and pitiable ; —not easily at first to There are accessible materials in abundance be credited, and to the last difficult to be for such a history; and the task of arranging told with calmness. Yet it is thus only that them really seems no less inviting than im- it can be told with advantage—and so told, portant. It abounds with striking events, and it is pregnant with admonitions and suggeswith strange revolutions and turns of fortune tions, as precious in their tenor, as irresisti- brought on, sometimes by the agency of ble in their evidence, when once fairly reenterprising men,-but more frequently by ceived. the silent progress of time, unwatched and Unquestionably, in the main, England has unsuspected, alike by those who were to suf- been the oppressor, and Ireland the victim; fer, and those who were to gain by the result. —not always a guiltless victim, -and it may In this respect, as well as in many others, it is be, often an offender: But even when the as full of instruction as of interest,--and to the guilt may have been nearly balanced, the people of this country especially, and of this weight of suffering has always fallen on the age, it holds out lessons far more precious, far weakest. This comparative weakness, inmore forcible, and far more immediately ap- deed, was the first cause of Ireland's misery plicable, than all that is elsewhere recorded the second, her long separation. She had in the annals of mankind. It is the very great- been too long a weak neighbour, to be easily ness of this interest, however, and the dread, admitted to the rights of an equal ally. Prean l the encouragement of these applications, tensions which the growing strength and inthit have hitherto defaced and even falsified telligence of the one country began to feel the record-that have made impartiality al- intolerable, were sanctioned in the eyes of the most hopeless, and led alternately to the sup- other by long usage and prescription ;-and pression and the exaggeration of sufferings injustice, which never could have been first and atrocities too monstrous, it might appear, inflicted when it was first complained of, was in themselves, to be either exaggerated or yet long persisted in, because it had been long disguised. Party rancour and religious ani- submitted to with but little complaint. No mosity have hitherto contrived to convert misgovernment is ever so bad as provincial what should have been their antidote into misgovernment—and no provincial misgor. their aliment,--and, by the simple expedient ernment, it would seem, as that which is er. of giving only one side of the picture, have ercised by a free people,—whether arising pretty generally succeeded in making the his- from a jealous reluctance to extend that proud tory of past enormities not a warning against, distinction to a race of inferiors, or from that but an incitement to, their repetition. In tell- inherent love of absolute power, which gives ing the story of those lamentable dissensions, all rulers a tendency to be despotic, and seeks, each party has enhanced the guilt of the ad- when restrained at home, for vent and indemversary, and withheld all notice of their own; nification abroad. -and seems to have had it far more at heart The actual outline of the story is as clear to irritate and defy each other, than to leave as it is painful. Its most remarkable and * It may be thought that this should rather have has been made the pretext of its most sangui
most disgusting feature is, that while Religion been brought in under the title of History : But the truth is, that I have now omitted all that is properly nary and atrocious contentions, it has been, historical, and retained only what relates to the ne- from first to last, little else than a cover for cessity of maintaining the legislative and incorpo- the basest cupidity, and the meanest and most rating union of the iwo countries ; a topic that is unprincipled ambition. The history which purely political: and falls, I think, correctly enough concerns the present times, need not be traced under the title of General Politics, since it is at this farther back than to the days of Henry VIII. day of still more absorbing interest than when these observations were first published in 1827. If at that and Queen Mary. Up to that period, the petty time I thought a Separation, or a dissolution of the and tyrannical Parliaments of the Pale had, union, (for ihey are the same thing,) a measure not indeed, pretty uniformly insulted and des. to be contemplated but with horror, it may be sup- pised the great native chiefs among whom the posed that I should not look more charitably on the bulk of the island was divided-but they had proposition, now that Catholic emancipation and also feared them, and mostly let them alone. least, of the motives or apologies of those by whom At that era, however, the growing strength it was then maintained. The example of Scotland. and population of England inspired it with a I still think, is well put for the argument: And bolder ambition; and the rage of proselytism among the many who must now consider this ques- which followed the Reformation, gave it both tion, it may be gratifying to some to see upon what occasion and excuse. The passions, which grounds, and how decidedly, an opinion was then formed upon it, by one certainly not too much dis. led naturally enough to hostilities in such cirposed to think favourably of the conduct or the pre- cumstances, were industriously fostered by iensions of England.
the cold blooded selfishness of those who
vere to profit by the result. Insurrections is in vain to hope that a provincial govern were now regularly followed by Forfeitures; ment should not be oppressive—that å deleand there were by this time men and enter-gated power should not be abused—that of prise enough in England to meditate the oc- iwo separate countries, allied only, but not incupancy of the vast domains from which the corporated, the weaker should not be derebel chieftains were thus first to be driven. graded, and the stronger unjust. The only From this period, accordingly, to that of the remedy is to identify and amalgamate them Restoration, the bloodiest and most atrocious throughout—to mix up the oppressors and the in her unhappy annals, the history of Ireland oppressed—to take away all privileges and may be summarily described as that of a se distinctions, by fully communicating them, ries of sanguinary wars, fomented for purpo- and to render abuses impossible, by confoundses of Confiscation. After the Restoration, ing their victims with their authors. and down till the Revolution, this was suc- If any one doubts of the wretchedness of ceeded by a contest equally unprincipled and an unequal and unincorporating alliance, of mercenary, between the settlers under Crom the degradation of being subject to a provinwell and the old or middle occupants whom cial parliament and a distant king, and of the they had displaced. By the final success of efficacy of a substantial union in curing all King William, a strong military government these evils
, he is invited to look to the obvious was once more imposed on this unhappy land; example of Scotland. While the crowns only under which its spirit seemed at last to be were united, and the governments continued broken, and even its turbulent activity re- separate, the weaker country was the scene pressed. As it slowly revived, the Protestant of the most atrocious cruelties, the most vioantipathies of the English government seem lent injustice, the most degrading oppressions. to have been reinforced, or replaced, by a The prevailing religion of the people was promore extended and still more unworthy Na- scribed and persecuted with a ferocity greater tional Jealousy-first on the subject of trade, than has ever been systematically exercised, and then on that of political rights : - and even in Ireland; her industry, was crippled since a more enlightened view of her own and depressed by unjust and intolerable reinterests, aided by the arms of the volunteers strictions; her parliaments corrupted and overof 1780, have put down those causes of op- awed into the degraded instruments of a dispression,--the system of misgovernment has tant court, and her nobility and gentry, cut off been maintained, for little other end, that we from all hope of distinction by vindicating can discern, but to keep a small junto of arro- the rights or promoting the interests of their gant individuals in power, and to preserve the country at home, were led to look up to the supremacy of a faction, long after the actual favour of her oppressors as the only remaincessation of the causes that lifted them into ing avenue to power, and degenerated, for the authority.
most part, into a band of mercenary advenThis is the abstract and brief chronicle" turers;—the more considerable aspiring to the of the political or external history of the sister wretched honour of executing the tyrannical island. But it has been complicated of late, orders which were dictated from the South, and all its symptoms aggravated by the sin- and the rest acquiring gradually those habits gularity of its economical relations. The mar- of subserviency and selfish submission, the vellous multiplication of its people, and the traces of which are by some supposed to be growing difficulty of supplying them with yet discernible in their descendants. The food or employment, presenting, at the pre- Revolution, which rested almost entirely on sent moment, a new and most urgent cause the prevailing antipathy to Popery, required, of dissatisfaction and alarm. For this last of course, the co-operation of all classes of class of evils, a mere change in the policy of Protestants; and, by its success, the Scottish the Government would indeed furnish no ef. Presbyterians were relieved, for a time, from fectual remedy: and to find one in any degree their Episcopalian persecutions. But it was available, might well task the ingenuity of the not till after the Union that the nation was most enlightened and beneficent. But for the truly emancipated; or lifted up from the abgreater part of her past sufferings, as well as ject condition of a dependant, at once susher actual degradation, disunion, and most pected and despised. The effects of that dangerous discontent, it is impossible to deny happy consolidation were not indeed immedithat the successive Governments of England ately apparent; For the vices which had been have been chiefly responsible. Without pre-generated by a century of provincial mistending to enumerate, or even to class, the government, the meannesses that had become several charges which might be brought habitual, the animosities that had so long been against them, or to determine what weight fostered, could not be cured at once, by the should be allowed to the temptations or pro- mere removal of their cause. The generation vocations by which they might be palliated, they had degraded, must first be allowed to we think it easier and far more important die out—and more, perhaps, than one generato remark, that the only secure preventive tion: But the poison tree was cut down-the would have been an early, an equal, and com- fountain of bitter waters was sealed up, and plete incorporating Union of the two coun- symptoms of returning vigour and happiness tries :—and that the only effective cure for were perceived. Vestiges may still be traced, the misery occasioned by its having been so perhaps, of our long degradation ; but for, at long delayed, is to labour, heartily and in ear- least, forty years back, the provinces of Scotnest, still to render it equal and complete. It I land have been, on the whole. but the North
ern provinces of Great Britain. There are , liberty, they felt that they could only mainno local oppressions, no national animosities. tain themselves in possession of it, by keepLife, and liberty, and property, are as secure in ing up that distrust and animosity, after its Caithness as they are in Middlesex-industry causes had expired. They contrived, thereas much encouraged, and wealth still more fore, by false representations and unjust laws, rapidly progressive ; while not only different to fóster those prejudices, which would otherreligious opinions, but different religious estab- wise have gradually disappeared—and, unlishments subsist in the two ends of the same luckily, succeeded but too well. As their island in unbroken harmony, and only excite own comparative numbers and natural coneach other, by a friendly emulation, to greater sequence diminished, they clung still closer purity of life and greater zeal for Christianity. to iheir artificial holds on authority; and, ex
If this happy Union, however, had been asperated by feeling their dignity menaced, delayed for another century—if Scotland had and their monopolies endangered by the growbeen doomed to submit for a hundred years ing wealth, population, and intelligence of the more to the provincial tyranny of the Lauder- country at large, they redoubled their efforts, dales, Rotheses, and Middletons, and to meet by clamour and activity, intimidation and dethe cruel persecutions which gratified the fe- ceit, to preserve the unnatural advantages rocity of her Dalzells and Drummonds, and they had accidentally gained, and to keep tarnished the glories of such men as Mon- down that springtide of general reason and trose and Dundee, with her armed conventi. substantial power which they felt rising and cles and covenanted saints militant—to see swelling all around them. her patriots exiled, or bleeding on the scaffold Their pretence was, that they were the -her only trusted teachers silenced in her champions of the Protestant Ascendancy-and churches and schools, and her Courts of Jus- that whenever that was endangered, there tice degraded or overawed into the instru- was an end of the English connection. While ments of a cowardly oppression, can any man the alliance of the two countries was indeed doubt, not only that she would have presented, no more than a connection, there might be at this day, a scene of even greater misery some truth in the assertion—or at least it was and discord than Ireland did in 1800; but easy for an Irish Parliament to make it appear that the corruptions and animosities by which to be true. But the moment they came to she had been desolated would have been be incorporated, its falsehood and absurdity found to have struck so deep root as still to should at once have become apparent. Unencumber the land, long after their seed had luckily, however, the incorporation was not so ceased to be scattered abroad on its surface, complete, or the union so entire, as it should and only to hold out the hope of their eradi- have been. There still was need, or was cation, after many years of patient and painful thought to be need, of a provincial manage. exertion ?
ment, a domestic government of Ireland Such, however, is truly the condition of Ire- and the old wretched parliamentary machiland; and such are the grounds, and such the nery, though broken up and disabled for its aspect of our hopes for her regeneration. So original work, naturally supplied the materials far from tracing any substantive part of her for its construction. The men still survived miseries to the Union of 1800, we think they, who had long been the exclusive channels of are to be ascribed mainly to its long delay, communication with the supreme authority; and its ultimate incompleteness. It is not by and though other and wider channels were a dissolution of the Union with England then, now opened, the habit of employing the forthat any good can be done, but by its im- mer, aided by the eagerness with which they provement and consolidation. Some injury sought for continued employment, left with it may have produced to the shopkeepers of them an undue share of its support. Still more Dublin, and some inconsiderable increase in unluckily, the ancient practice of misgovern. the number of the absentees. But it has shutment had left its usual traces on the character, up the main fountain of corruption and dis- not only of its authors, but its victims. Habithonour; and palsied the arm and broken the ual oppression had produced habitual disaffecheart of local insolence and oppression. It tion; and a long course of wrong and conhas substituted, at least potentially and in tumely, had ended in a desperate indignation, prospect, the wisdom and honour of the British and an eager thirst for revenge. Government and the British people, to the The natural and necessary consequences passions and sordid interests of a junto of of the Union did not, therefore, immediately Irish boroughmongers,—and not only enabled, follow its enactment—and are 'likely indeed but compelled, all parties to appeal directly to be longer obstructed, and run greater hazto the great tribunal of the British public. ard of being fatally intercepted, than in the While the countries remained apart, the actual case of Scotland. Not only is the mutual depositaries of power were almost unavoida- exasperation greater, and the wounds more bly relied on by the general government for deeply rankled, but the Union itself is more information, and employed as the delegates incomplete, and leaves greater room for comof its authority-and, as unavoidably, abused plaints of inequality and unfairness. The the trust, and misled and imposed on their numerical strength, too, of the Irish people is employers. Having come into power at the far greater, and their causes of discontent time when the Catholic party, by its support more uniform, than they ever were in Scotof the House of Stuart, had excited against it land; and, above all, the temper of the race all the fears and antipathies of the friends of infinitely more eager, sanguine, and reck.