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such offences as are not aggravated may have an essential influence on or atrocious, for a time not exceeding the present scheme of punishments. sixty or ninety days. The convicts It has been observed by Beccaria, should be kept in these cells in per- whose opinions have the force of fect solitude, and on spare diet, in axioms in the science of penal law, the manner practised in the State that, “as punishments become more Prison.

a punishment, for mild, clemency and pardon become sixty days, would be more severe less necessary;"—that “clemency and terrible, and tend more to the belongs to the legislator, and not to prevention of crimes, than confine. the executor of the laws; a virtue ment, for one or two years, to hard which ought 10 shine in the code labour in the State Prison. It would not in private judgments. To show also tend more to the reformation of mankind that crimes may be pardonthe offender himself. Detached ed, or that punishment is not the nefrom vicious companions, from lemp. cessary consequence, is to nourish tation, and from all means of gravity- the flaitering hope of impunity."ing hisdepraved appetites, conscience “ Let then the executor of the law would have time to awaken a sense be inexorable, but let the legislator of guilt and remorse for his past folly be tender, indulgent, and humane." and misconduct.

These principles, though just in Should a plan of such obvious theory, necessarily presuppose a perutility be adopted and carried into fect system of penal law, by which execution, it would not then be ne- each punishment is with such exact cessary to send convicts to the State justice apportioned to each crime, Prison for a shorter period than three that no difference of circumstances years. For every person once con- can arise in any case, which ought fined in the solitary cells, who to vary the punishment prescribed should, after his release, commit a for the particular offence. No code second offence, would deserve to be so perfect has yet been framed, and sentenced to hard labour for, at until such an one is promulgated, it is least, three years. Indeed it might, necessary that the power of pardon. with propriety, be left to the discre- ing should reside somewhere, to pre. tion of the court, in certaiv cases of vent that injustice in particular cases second offences, to inflict the same which the legislator did not foresee, punishment as in cases of grand lar- or could not avoid. By our constituceny; since it can hardly be sup- tion this power is confised to the posed, that any material or lasting guvernor, ihe chief executive magiseffect can be produced on a criminal, trate.t by the labour and discipline of a pe- And under the penal laws, except nitentiary house, in a shorter time in those cases where the punishment than four or five years.--And it he is of death still remains, the power of incorrigible by means of solitude, pardoning may be esercised without iemperance, and cleanliness, he will not merit if he is guilty of a second * Dei Delitti e delle Pene, $ 20.—A mioffence, a punishment less severe sura che le pene divengono più dolci, la than imprisonment for that length of clemenza ed il perdono diventano meno time.

necessari: &c. Before concluding this account,

+ In cases of treason and murder, the

governor cannot pardon, but may repriere it may be proper to make a few re

the convict until the next meeting of the marks, the result of sume observation legislature, who may pardon if they think and experience, on a subject which fit.

or

violating the principle advanced by the offender; since, from the inevithe philosopher of Milan. It may table want of foresight in the legisbe asserted, that, in the deliberate and lature, of the circumstances of each impartiał manner in which justice case, it could not be so predeterminis administered in our courts, it is ed by them. Thus forgery and scarcely possible that any man can counterfeiting, as well as passing be presented by a grand jury, tried money, knowing the same to be forgand convicted by a petit jury of ed or counterfeit, punished by imtwelve men, in the presence of the prisonment for life, is a crime, the court and the world, without a degree objects of which are endlessly diverof guilt deserving of some punish- sified, comprehending acts of differment. Imprisonment for a short pe.

ent degrees of turpitude.* riod, under the mild and humane re- 2. Where the law has only defined gulations of the State Prison, cannot, a limit in the time of imprisonment, in cases the most favourable to the leaving it to the discretion of the prisoner, be deemed unjust. It may judge to fix the duration of punishbe laid down, then, as a general ment within that limit, according to principle, that no person, convicted the circumstances of each case ; of a crime and sentenced to imprison- there it may be generally said, that ment, ought to be pardoned, until the executive ought not to interpose; he has suffered a punishment pro- unless when the discretion of the portioned to the degree of his guilt, court has been manifestly exercised or at least so much as may satisfy the under some misapprehension, community he has injured. Under where circumstances, favourable to the guidance of this principle, it is the convict, come to light after trial, believed, that the power of pardon- of which he could not avail himself ing may be made conducive to a at the time, but had they been more perfect dispensation of justice, known, ought to have prevented or and subservient to the plan of refor- lessened his punishment. mation intended by a penitentiary 3. Unequivocal evidence of reforprison. It will not be thought use- mation in a convict, after his imless to endeavour to fix some general prisonment; to ascertain which, as rules for the exercise of a power, well as the propriety and safety of which, if arbitrary and capricious, discharging a convict before the exmay produce consequences neither piration of his term of punishment, foreseen nor intended; but if exerted the judgment of the Inspectors of with sound discretion, so far from weakening the laws, will strengthen It may be fairly questioned, whether their operation.

this and some other crimes are not impro1. Where the punishinent is fixed perly punished by imprisonment for life. by law to a crime of a general legal number of years, it would be in the power

if the sentence did not exceed a certain description, comprehending a great of the court to apply the punishment in a variety of different acts, which must, manner more justly proportioned to the from the course of human conduct, offence : there would then be rarely, if be accompanied with evidence of ever, any occasion for the executive to re

Most of the governgreater or less depravily; there this mit the sentence. attribute of the chief executive ma

ments of Europe, excepting England, have,

in circumstances of society and manners far gistrate seems necessary, to remedy less favourable than those of this country, the imperfection of the general law, gone further in the melioration of their and to render the punishment more penal laws; and the punishment of death equitably proportioned to the guilt of is gradually disappearing from their codes.

BELFAST MAG. NO, XXXIX.

AI IN

the prison, from their situation, may occasion, at an unguarded moment, be of essential importance. Indeed, will show itself. In short, pardon this precaution has been taken by ought never to be granted from the the late, and present governor of the momentary impulse of compassion, State, who have applied for the re- the indulgence of which may be graquisite information to the Inspectors, tifying to the individual, but, as reguthe majority of whom have joined in lated by no fixed principle, must be a recommendation for pardon, where injurious to the public; nor ought it they thought it clearly merited by to be granted, merely at the instance the convict. Previous to such re- of friends or relations, or from concommendation, however, the inspec- siderations of family, but from the tors think it their duty to inquire, clear and unbiassedilictates of justice whether the prisoner was convicted and humanity, and in such a manner by clear and undoubted testimony; that the community may be satisfied which may be ascertained by the that the influence of the law is not report of the judge before whom he impaired, nor its severity relaxed, vas tried; whether the circum- without sufficient reason. stances attending the commission No man who enters the prison with of the crime denoie a greater or less vicious habits, can be reasonably exdegree of depravity; whether the pected to be divested of them in less prisoner has already suffered a than four or five years; and it would punishment sufficient to satisfy soci- greatly injure the penitentiary sysety, and to afford a reasonable ground tem, tos pardon any prisoner before to believe that his release will not di- the expiration of that time, unless in minish the dread of future punish- extraordinary cases, which may posment in bin, or inspire the hope of sibly, but very rarely, happen. impunity in others; -whether, while When sentenced to imprisonment for in prison, he has conducted himself life, no person ought to be released with uniform decency, industry, and until after seven years confinement. sobriety, and has never attempted to lt, under the circumstances which have violate any of its regulations ;--and, been mentioned, and on principles lastly, whether from what is known here stater, pardons are sometimes of his temper, character, and deport- granted, instead of counteracting the ment, it is probable, that if restored force of the law, they may be made to society, he will become a peace- to harmonize with and support the able, honest, and industrious citizen. general scheme of punishments so These inquiries onght 10 be satisfac- wisely adopted. Its success must, in torily answered in favour of the con- a great meashre, depend on ibe wisvict, before he is recommended for dom of the regulations devised for pardon; for it is not a common the internal management of the ordinary course of good conduct and prison, and on the prudence, disindustry, but a pre-eminent and un- interested attention, and perseverance exceptionable behaviour, that shoull of those to whom that management is entitle a prisoner to this grace. A entrusted. convict radically and incurably de- To exhibit a simple and faithful praved, in hope of gaining favour, account of those regulations, and to may, for a season, so far disguise bis furnish such useful hints as the writer, genuine character, as to deceive his from his own experience and the sugkeepers and inspectors. Sufficient gestions of others, could impart, is time should be allowed to discover the purpose of the preceding pages. his real disposition, which, on some He is sensible that the plan of ipie

or

rior regulation is far from being per- vion, withont a memento of their ex. fect; but every year will add to its istence. O! the astonishing power improvement. For, besides relieving of addresses !--They can hold up for the counties from the great burden present admiration, in defiance of of keeping convicts, and diminishing vices--and hand down to posterity, the chances of escape, by bringing in spite of insignificance. them all into one prison, under a

It cannot, however, for a moment more vigilant inspection, the establish- be imagined, that this address is prement of a State Prison presents the sented with any such servile view.-best opportunity, by the magnitude My Lords, the public contain withand liberality of its plan, for the fore in themselves all the vital princimation of a well digested scheme of ples of real greatness, and therefore internal management and economy, can receive no additional notoriety. and the full execution of the only To increase their importance, by just and beneficent system yet devised any address, would be impossible; for the punishment and correciion of to attempt it, would be vain and criminals. The New-York State presumptuous.

But lest any one Prison will furnish a model for others, should be inclined to put such an which the increase of population and invidious construction on my con, growth of luxury may render neces- duct in this ailair, I shall here sube sary in the distant parts of this ex- join, for his satisfaction, a full and tensive country.* And, whatever true account of every why and may be the future condition of man. wherefore by which I am actuated. kind, this institution will reflect last- Be it known then, that to lay ing honour on the State; become a open to the consideration of the durable monument of the wisdom, public, the nature and design of justice, and humanity of its legisla. Motivemongery; to enumerate, for tors, more glorious than the most their information, the qualifications splendid achievements of conquerors required in its professors; to point or kings; and be remembered when out some of the advantages to be the magnificent structures of folly derived from the institution; to deand pride, with their founders, are tect some pretenders, who impose alike exterminated and forgotten. on the ignorant, and by assuming

our name, bring disgrace on our soFor the Belfast Monthly Magazine. ciety; and to propose some plans for

the farther improvement of Motive

mongery. These are, may it please NAME AND BEHALF

your worship, the sole reasons for ETY OF MOTIVEMONGERS.

presenting this address. ADDRESSES are become fashion

Motivemongery is in the conduct able, and experience shows of life, what well-founded theory is they are useful. They have made

in philosophy : by the one we disthe world acquainted with thousands, cover the secret springs of action : who otherwise would have passed by the other we account for the phethrough life in undistinguished ob- pomena of nature. Whilst we live scurity, and sunk quietly into obli. in the world, we must judge of the

actions of mankind, and pronounce * Similar prisons are already established

them good or bad according to their in New-Jersey and Virginia, and others

natural tendency, or influence on are proposed to be erected in Massachus- society. But, if we judge candidly, sets and South-Carolina.

our decisions will be influenced

AN ADDRESS TO THE PUBLIC IN THE

OF

THE SOCI

chiefly by consideration of the mo- versity; under the various influences tives from whence those actions of religion, superstition, or infidearise. Hence we see the utility and lity; and in the different relations necessity of Motivemongery; which of king, subject, parent, child, or teaches us to discover and estimate friend; with many others, obvious motives aright. Would mankind to every thinking mind. Upon these only be what they appear, this art observations, he founds his expewould not then be necessary; but, rience; and from that experience, as long as they continue to make forms his opinions of the motives by their appearance in masquerade, the which mankind are actuated in all design of the Motivemonger is, the changefulcircumstances of human to strip them of their external de. life. To these he adds mature delibeception, and discover what they are ration. Most men act and think in their native dress.

merely from first impressions ; but the For this purpose very few indeed Motivemonger pursues a very difare truly qualified. Not every one ferent line of conduct. He comwho with ill-natured spleen criti. pares circumstances, possibilities, cises the conduct of mankind, and and probabilities; examines every delights to expose their failings; nor evidence before he gives in his verevery one who elevated on the pin- dict, and wherever justice will pernacle of his own vanity, looks down mit, leans to the side of mercy. upon the little world below him The other qualifications necessary to with a supercilious contempt, and the character of the Motivemonger thinks them beneath his notice ;- are good-nature, philanthropy, and No, the real Motivemonger is a be- benevolence. Good-nature enables ing of quite another nature. He re- him to bear with seeming faults, quires, first, an original power of until he sufficiently examine whediscernment; and in this respect, ther they be as bad as they at first like a poet, he must be born, not sight appear; philanthropy rouses bred. This quickness of discern. bim from slothful inactivity, and exment is an essential qualification; cites him to exercise his powers in it stands directly opposed to that the service of his fellow men; beimpenetrable thickness of scull, nevolence guides every motion of his which learning attempts to overcome soul, and whilst he exercises his abi. with no more success, than “sparrow lities for the welfare of a few, breathes shot fired against a bastion.” But, forth the wish of love for the happihowever penetrative the mind may ness of all. The last requisite is, originally be, it is no more than impartiality. Without chis, all the foundation on which the super- others, however specious in appearstructure of Motivemongery is to be ance, are but like a gilt frame, combuilt; and he who would practice pared to the solid metal. Impartiit with success, must, in the second ality is the spring which must direct place, be A CAREFUL OBSERVER of the machine, otherwise its motions mankind. Without observation will be irregular, and its indications there can be no true experience, and false. Impartiality levels the diswithout experience no just conclu- tinction of party, cancels the acsion. The Motivemonger knows, counts of interest, silences the sothat“ the proper study of mankind phistical pleadings of attachment is man;" be, therefore, minutely and self-love, patiently listens to the observes his conduct in the various arguments of unbiassed reason, and modifications of prosperity and ad. decides with indifference for friend

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