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there was reason to suspect that the other islands would shortly be in the same predicament. The force destined for the conquest of St. Domingo, he contended to be in the greatest degree inadequate, and by no means able to contend with the marauders of the country. So great and unpardonable was the neglect, that there were not now 3000 men.
He next took a view of the conduct of the war upon the Continent, which he accused of the most gross and unpardonable mismanagement. He particularly blamed the neglect of the Allies in not commencing with the siege of Lisle, at a time when that key of France and of the Netherlands might easily have been taken, from the smallness and disorganized state of the garrison. He compared with such an acquisition the conquest of Valenciennes, Conde, Quesnoy, and Landrecies, as but of small importance; and without that acquisition, had the expedition against Dunkirk succeeded, it would have been impossible to retain it.
He then went on to censure in the same manner the attack on Maubeuge, the · abandonment of Valenciennes, and other strong places; the retreat from Brabant, the evacuation of Ostend, leaving Nieuport to its fate, the affair of Toulon, and indiscriminately all the military operations since the commencement of the war. Throughout all his strictures he guarded against any imputation against the military character of the Commander in Chief, and the other Officers, directe ing himself solely to the plans and measures of Administration, and concluded with recommending a greater attention to the state of the British navy.
Mr. Hussey wished, before the present motion should be carried, that the House should be in possession of the Minister's promised plan for the better recruiting of his Majesty's navy. So much, in his opinion, depended upon our naval efforts, that he wished greater energy was employed even in impressing more seamen, though it might be a mode not strictly constitutional; because thus our commerce would have been better protected, and our seamen better disposed of on board our own men of war, than in crowding the prisons of the enemy, as he apprehended was now the unfortunate situation of many of them.
He by no means intended to oppose the augmentation of our military force, if it was found to be necessary, and that the country could afford it; but great as our resources were, they were by no means inexhaustible; and if we were to be brought to our last effort, that effort should be made in the increase of our naval establishmen', upon which we could place the greatest confidence and dependence. He would not say that as yet we were driven to our last stake, but that we are approaching to that crisis may be seen from nearly infallible symptoms. He there. fore moved, " "That, for the present, the Chairman of the Committee should report progress, and ask leave to sit again."
Mr. Pitt expressed his readiness to admit of the necessity that existed for the utmost naval exertions; but in adverting to the history of this country it would . be found, that in the most brilliant periods the navy of Great Britain was most successful when the land forces of the country, by diversions upon the territory of the enemy, co-operated and assisted it. Amongst all the reverses that we had hitherto experienced, we had still to recollect with pleasure that our rea sources for carrying on the war were encreasing with the necessity of employing them, and that our commerce and manufactories flourished to an unprecedented degree. All parties seemed unanimous in the opinion, that the situation we were in called for the utmost efforts in every department; and the best means of defence against an elated enemy must be allowed to consist in offensive operations. The events of the campaign, though disatrous, were only such as should animate the breast of Englishmen, and rouse all our fortitude. He should, for that reason, oppose any measure which could have the appearance of diffidence or dejection. In one sense of the word, we were truly at our last stake; as on the issue of the contest depended the preservation of our laws, our prosperity, and constitution ; but in no other sense had we any occasion for den spondency.
Mr. For thought, that had it been the fortune of Mr. Pitt to have been Minister in the reign of Queen Anne, when the success of the British arms was the theme of universal eulogy, or had he been Minister in the seyen years war
conducted by his illustrious father, such language might have become him; but, after a course of military operations so disastrous and disgraceful, he should have thought that a tone of humiliation and contrition should be substituted for that of confidence and pride. He considered it as an iņsult and an aggravation of the sufferings of the nation, that it should be addressed by the Minister in such
terms' as if he had won what he had lost, when every operation was an argument of ignorance and stupidity.
With a view to shew the incapacity of Ministers to conduct the affairs of the nation at this crisis, Mr. Fox traversed the range of our military operations, and argued, that they were as unsuccessfully executed, as they were injudiciously concerted.
He dwelt at large upon the affairs of Holland, which he considered as a sacrifice to the fatal friendship of Great Britain. He drew a very lamentable picture of the loss sustained by the British army in the campaign, and arraigned the policy of suffering them to remain and be slaughtered in that country, after it was publicly notified that the Dutch were suing for a peace. He accused administration of neglecting the opportunity of assisting the Royalists when they were in force in La Vendes, and thought the country had little to expect from the future measures of men, who had hitherto shewn no talents, but what served for the ruin of their country.
Such was, he said, the situation in which men presumed to call for confidenca The House must remember, that when the financial situation of the country had for some time been discussed, one great argument of Mr. Pitt, sayoring equally of pride and humiliation, was, that there could be no flagrant misconduct in the Ministry while the national affairs were so prosperous. Let him now take the reverse of that reasoning, and shew how the wisdom of his admimistration is manifested in its effects.
The ill success of Lord Sandwich, as also that of Lord Sackville, were found sufficient grounds for removing them in the American war; but surely if their manes could be heard, or if they had any friends still existing in this country, they must exclaim against the injustice of having been the victims of ill success in one war, while their successors, still more unfortunate, call for confidence and applause.
Mr. Pitt said, the House must have observed in the Speech now delivered a gross and manifest perversion of his meaning, which was extremely unworthy of the Right Hon. Gentleman who employed it. In the first place, he by no means called for any particular confidence to be placed in the members of the Administration ; though he was conscious of no reason why any confidence which they had heretofore possessed should now be diminished. If Mr. Fox could convince the House and the Country, that his Majesty's Ministers were ignorant, stupid, and incapable of conducting the affairs of the country, his most proper mode would be an Address to the Throne to remove them, which Address, under such circumstances, would no doubt be heard and attended to. But in thus displacing the Members of Administration, he would find himself deceived if he thought that he and his friends would be appointed to succeed them, unless he could first shew that the condition of Great Britain was such as placed it at the mercy of its enemies. The confidence of which he (Mr. Pitt) spoke, was that which should be placed in the spirit and fortitude of the people, which, undismayed by reverses, still felt the means of opposing the general enemy of Europe, and was resolved to employ them.
Another instance of misrepresentation was, that he had treated with levity the disasters of the campaign. But it was in the recollection of every one, that he had acknowledged as well as lamented those calamities, though he could not but remark the tone of exultation in which Mr. Fox seemed so happy to recount them.
In the midst of all that disgrace in which Mr. Fox attempted to involve the military operations of this country, he would ever contend that its history could uot present a period more honourable to its arms. That some of the forces of our allies had not acted to the extent, or in the manner, that we had reason to expect, he never attempted to conceal. As to one in particular (Holland), it may appear ungenerous, at the present moment, to say any thing in the way
of reproaches; but there was no denying that it was a sacrifice to its own inertness, and it became the victim of vague expectation of the tender mercies of an enemy which Mr. Fox delighted to extol, and would persuade this country to rely upon. Surely the Ministers of this country could not be deemed responsible for the failure of some of its allies, any more than they should be for that inclemency of the season, unknown for many years, which opened the passage of Holland to the armies of the enemy.
He then defended the propriety of continuing the British troops in Holland, even during the negotiation which, contrary to the wishes of this country, they entered into for a peace. At that time there was every appearance that the fron. tier was defensible; and if under such circumstances Mr. Fox should be in 'clined to abandon them to their fate, it was a degree of pusillanimity, to say no worse of it, which he should not be inclined to imitate.
Mr. For replied at some length, and after a few observations from Mr. M. Robinson, the amendment of Mr. Hussey was negatived, and the original question, as well as the other resolutions, carried without any division. Adjourned.
22. Mr. Hobart brought up the Resolution of the Committee of Supply respecting the Army Estimates. A long debate took place, the result of which was, that the Resolutions of the Committee were adopted, and Bills ordered in pursuance of these Resolutions.
23. Mr. Mainwaring presented a Petition, signed by 3000 innkeepers, stating the grievances they laboured under from the present mode of billeting solo diers.-Mr. M. wished to move for'a Committee of Enquiry on the subject.
The Speaker was of opinion the Petition should lie on the Table.
Mr. Mainwaring expressed some apprehensions that the Bill might lie on the Table until it was forgotten.
Mr. Pitt said, that this could not be the case, unless the Hon. Gentleman who presented the Petition forgot his duty-its prayer was such as to merit the attention of the House, as the case of the Petitioners was certainly such as to require some relief, though not to the extent as might be expected.
Petition ordered to lie on the Table. 26. William Baldwin, Esq. was sworn in, and took his seat for the Borough of Malton, in Yorkshire.
Mr. Grey said, he rose, in consequence of a notice he had some time ago given, to call the attention of the House to a question, than which none more Serious and important had ever as yet occupied its deliberative capacity. It was a question not like other little questions, to be argued on the narrow grounds of party principles or prejudices, but a question that should proceed on the broad basis of national interest, since it deeply affected the honour, the security, nay the very existence of the country. After a speech of considerable length, Mr. Grey moved, “That it is the opinion of this House, that the existence of the present Government of France should not be considered, at this time, as precluding a Negotiation for Peace,” which was seconded by Mr. W. Smith.
Mr. Adams did not think this was a proper time to enter into a Negotiation; for that if the proposals of Peace were even to come at this moment from the French to us, he would much doubt whether it would not be detrimental to our interests to accept it; and even intended as a serious injury to us if acceded to.
Mr. Pitt desired that some extracts might be read from several declarations of his Majesty ; which being done, he read a long resolution, composed chiefly of the same language as is contained in the declarations before-mentioned, but concluded in words nearly in the foilowing substance: “ That this House would be glad to co-operate with his Majesty in obtaining a Peace with any power under - any form of Government, which was settled upon such principles as might give reason to expect, that the Powers contracting with it would have security in so doing.”
A lớng debate then took place, which continued till four in the morning, when the House diyided, for Mr. Pitt's amendment, 269-against it, 86.
The House being resumed, a further debate took place, during which Mr. Wilberforce moved a second amendment, which made the motion nearly the same as Mr. Grey's, and a division taking place, there appeared for Mr. Wilberforce's amendment, 90-against it, 254 ; and at a quarter before six in the morning the House adjourned.
28. Mr. Hussey moved, that there be laid before the House an account of the National Debt, as it stood on the 5th of January 1795, as also of the interest paid thereon. Ordered accordingly.
The Chancellor of the Escbequer, in consequence of a notice he had given relative thereto, moved that the House should enter into a Committee of the whole House on Monday next, to consider of the most speedy and effectual means for augmenting the Navy. He said, he did not then intend to enter into any reasoning on the expediency of the measures to be proposed, but he thought it proper to state the propositions which he should then make:
First, That notice be given to the merchants and traders of the different ports in Great Britain, that no ship shall be permitted to clear outwards from any port in this kingdom, without having contributed a certain specific proportion of seamen for manning the navy, and producing a certificate thereof, signed by the proper officer. He said, that in the mean time he should be happy to inform himself, from any merchants or other persons who were capable of giving information, relative to any other mode of more effectually increasing the number of seamen.
Secondly, As he considered that there were a great number of watermen in the internal navigation of the country, who may be very advantageously employed in a ship, he should propose that the owners of vessels in that trade should also furnish a proportion of their watermen; and
Thirdly and lastly, He should propose, that as it was allowed by all, that there may be incorporated into each ship a large proportion of landmen, there should be a general call throughout the kingdom, in all the counties, to furnish a sufficient number, according to the exigencies of the case : he said, that the magistrates and justices of the peace should be obliged to represent the number of inhabited houses, which are not exempt from taxes, and that each parish should be obliged to contribute so many persons, according to the number of such houses therein ; thiese contributions to be made subject to a fine, which being greater than the probable bounty necessary to raise men, would have the good effect to make them enter voluntarily into the service of their country.
Mr. Pitt allowed, that these were strong measures, but under the present circumstances he contended they were perfectly justifiable.
Mr. Grey and Mr. Jekyll said a few words on the subject of the propositions, and were answered by Mr. Pitt. The motion passed nem. con.
The Order of the Day was read for the committal of the Habeas Corpus Suspension Bill.
Mr. For rose and said, he should object to the Speaker's leaving the Chair, but not upon the grounds heretofore advanced by his side of the House, but suggested whether it may not be necessary to have a declaratory law, in order that the law of treason should be perfectly clear and intelligible to the people, as some improper constructions had lately been put on the former statutes on the subject.
The Attorney-General insisted, that there had been no improper construction put upon the law of treason at the late trials at the Old Bailey.
Mr. Pitt said, that since the Revolution twelve acts of the Suspension of the Habeas Corpus Act had passed precisely similar to that of last year, a continuance of which, at this time, he considered as necessary.
On the question being put, “ that the Speaker do leave the Chair," the House divided, for the question, 68--against it, 14.
The House then entered into a Committee, and the Speaker having resumed the Chair, the report was brought up and received, and it was ordered that the Bill be read a third time on the morrow, and engrossed. Adjourned.
29. The Attorney-General having moved the Order of the Day, the Speaker put the question for the third reading of the Bill for continuing the suspension of the Habeas Corpus Act, which was carried, and the Bill read accordingly,
Mr. Sberidan coming in directly after the question was put that the Bill do pass, observed, that the question of law having been separated from the present Bill, he should reserve luis observations on this subject to a future day, contenting himself for the present with that opposition to the Bill which had hitherto been given. The House accordingly divided upon the question that the Bill de pass, Ayes, 62-Noes, 4.
THE FREEMASONs' MAGAZINE having per petually in its View to benefit the with a worthy Brother in the Idea that many Masons, of all Ranks in Life, would be disposed, agreeable to the Principles of Brotherly Love on which the Institution is founded, to employ in their sundry Professions, or deal in Trade with Masonic Brethren, in Preference to Persons who had not such a Claim; but are often prevented from so doing, through want of the Means of knowing where they may be found. To obviate this Incovenience, it is proposed, with the Approbation of many distinguished Characters in Masonry, to publish with the last Number of each Volume of the Magazine, that is, the Numbers for June and December, in every Year, in Addition to the usual Quantity of Letter Press,
A MASONIC DIRECTORY,
CONTAINING, IN DIFFERENT COLUMNS, The Names of Brethren, Their Places of RESIDENCE, Their PROFESSIONS, or Trades, in Alpbabetical Order, The NUMBER of the Lodge, of which they are Members, or in which they
were initiated, And distinguishing the respective Masters and OFFICERS of Lodges, &c. &c. This List will be paged separately, so as either to be bound up with the Volume, or taken out and preserved by itself.
To defray, in some Measure, the Extra Expence of Paper and Print, and not with a view to personal Profit (as will be evident to those who are aware of the Contingencies attending a Periodical Publication, conducted, printed, and embellished in the Stile of this Magazine), it is intended to receive SixPENCE with every Name and Description that may be sent for each Publication of the DIRECTORY.
Persons desirous of having their Names inserted will be pleased to send them as early as is convenient, accompanied with the necessary Particulars, to the Proprietor, at the British Letter FoundRY, BREAM'S BUILDINGS, CHANCERY LANE.
The very extensive Circulation and cordial Reception of this only Repository of Masonic Information among the Fraternity (sanctioned too as it is by an unanimous Resolution of the Grand Lodge, to permit the Proprietor to embellish it with Copies from all the Portraits in their Hall), must, it is presumed, give to the DirectORY all the Publicity that can be desired; and the Measure of in, Serting the Number of the Lodge of which each Brother 'is or was a Member, is designed to frustrate any attempts that might be made by Impostors desirous of reaping an unmerited Advantage : For should any such Persons make the At