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HOUSE OF COMMONS.
AMESS AGE was received from the Lords, stating that their Lordships had agreed to the American Intercourse Bill, and the Norfolk Island Judicature Bill, and several other public and private Bills.
Sir Watkin Lewes presented a Bill for widening and improving the avenues to the City by Temple Bar, &c.
The Chancellor of the Exchequer moved for leave to bring in a Bill for the purpose of augmenting the Royal Corps of Artillery, and providing seafaring men, from privates serving in the militia. The Bill was brought in and read a first time.
The Secretary at War brought up several accounts, which were ordered to be laid on the table.
The Chancellor of the Exchequer moved, that the House at rising adjourn till Thursday the 9th instant.
SUBALTERNS IN THE MILITIA.
The Order of the Day was read, for reading a second time, the Bill for granting a certain allowance to subaltern officers in the militia.
General Tarleton asked, whether there was in the printed Bill the clause that was in the written Bill, relative to officers in fencible regiments.
The Secretary at War said, that such a clause could not be inserted in the Bill, except in the Committee or on the report.
Colonel Bajlard said, that a very great difference would be produced by the omission of the clause. If it were omitted, it would thin the ranks of subalterns; if it were inserted, it would fill them.
The Chancellor of the Exchequer said, it would be hard is officers in the militia should be debarred from serving in fencible regiments, by a provision in the Bill to prevent them from
Vol. III. B retaining retaining their half-pay if they did enter into fencible regiments.
The conversation was interrupted by the Speaker, who said that the discussion properly belonged to the Committee. The Bill was read a second time, and ordered to be committed for Monday se'nnight.
The Scotch Distillery Bill, the Lottery Bill, and the BilJ for the farther preventing of smuggling, were read a second time, and ordered to be committed on Thursday the yth instant.;
The Vote of Credit Bill, for 2,500,0001. was read a first time, and ordered to be read a second time on Thursday the 9th instant.
The Bill empowering magistrates to take up vagrants for the service of his Majesty's navy, was read a third time and passed. Adjourned to the 9th instant.
HOUSE OF LORDS.
The House met at four o'clock, when the Powdcrcd-Hair Bill, the London Militia Bill, the Seamens Family Bill, Sec. were read a second time, and committed for Monday se'nnight. Some private Bills were also read. After which the House adjourned until Monday se'nnight, when their Lordships are to meet again for the further transaction of business.
HOUSE OF COMMONS.
Thursday, April 9.
Mr. Secretary Dundas gave notice that he should defer to Tuesday next, the consideration of the evidence on the trial of Mr. Hastings, and that the next day [Friday], he should move for a congratulation on die happy event of the marriage of his Royal Highness the Prince of Wales.
The report on the Bill for raising a certain number of men in the counties in Scotland for the service of the navy, was taken into further consideration, and gone through.
The Bill for allowing to his Majesty two millions and a half for the extraordinary expences of the present year, was read a second time, and ordered to be committed next day.
The report of the British Fishery Bill was brought up, read* and agreed to, and the Bill was ordered to be read a third time on Monday, if then engrossed.
The Bill for providing for the pay and clothing of the militia passed the Committee, and the report was ordered to be received the next day.
The Bill to indemnify those who have omitted to qualify themselves as by law required in certain cafes, was read a second time, and ordered to be committed.
The House agreed to go into a Committee of the whole House next day on the Lottery Bill.
A return was brought up from the Post-office, of the names of such Members as were disabled by bodily infirmity, and had allowed others to frank letters in their names.—Ordered to be laid on the table.
Mr. Ryder moved, that the House do to-morrow resolve itself itself into a Committee of the whole House, to consider of a mode to indemnify Governors, &c. who had permitted the importation of goods in foreign bottoms.—Ordered.
HOUSE OF COMMONS.
Friday, April 10.
Mr. Ryder moved for Jeave to bring in a Bill to indemnify Governors, Lieutenant-Governors, &c. in the West India islands, for having permitted the importation of goods in foreign bottoms.—Granted.
The Chancellor of the Exchequer moved, "That an humble Address be presented to his Majesty, to congratulate his Majesty on the nuptials of his Royal Highness the Prince o f Wales, and to express the cordial satisfaction which his faithful Commons feel on an event, which promises to gratify the wisties of his Majesty's faithful subjects by augmenting the domestic felicity of his Majesty's illustrious family, and by affording additional security for the enjoyment of the blessings experienced under the auspicious government of the House of Brunswick." —Agreed to sum. can.
A Committee was then appointed to prepare the Address, who retired, and in a few minutes returned with the Address, which was an echo to the words of the motion.
The fame Address was voted to be presented to the Queen.
Another also to their Royal Highnesses the Prince and Princess of Wales; and different Members of the House, who are of the Privy Council, were ordered to attend their Majesties and their Royal Highnesses with these Addresses on this joyful occasion.
B 2 Mr.
Air. Secretary Dundas rose to move the thanks of the House to Admiral Hotham for his meritorious conduct in the Mediterranean. He observed, that although the victory which the gallant Admiral had obtained over the enemy,' was not to be compared in point of advantage to us, to that which was obtained on the first of June, yet it manifested the British character as well, for it added, in a signal instance, to the superiority of the British arm's. While he felt this, he was bound to attribute much to the skill and bravery of the gallant officer under whose command this victory had been obtained; for by his management of the fleet, he compelled the enemy to cometo an action, which they wished to avoid. Having specified a sew particulars, he observed that such conduct ought to be brought before the Public, in order to receive the thanks of the Public i and the most regular way to accomplish that object, was to vote to the victors the thanks of the House. He therefore moved, "That the thanks of the House be given to ViceAdmiral Hotham for his late meritorious exertions in the command of his Majesty's fleet stationed in the Mediterranean."— Carried nem. con.
He then moved the fame vote of thanks to Vice-Admiral Goodall, Sir Hyde Parker, and Rear-Admiral Lindsay.
The question being put,
General Smith said, he agreed as heartily as any man in the House, to the vote of thanks proposed to the brave officers who had so essentially served their country: But he rose chiefly to say he was astonished that no notice had been taken of the conduct of Captain Faulknor, who had behaved as gallantly as any officer ever did in the service. He read the testimonies of the different commanders, as recorded in the Gazette, bestowing the higest praise on Captain Faulknor for skill and courage. He thought that a public monument ought to be erected to the memory of this brave officer. And if it was left to be done by the subscriptions of individuals, it would be a disgrace to the House of Commons, for it ought to be at the expence of the Public.
The question on the motion of Mr. Secretary Dundas, was
put and carried nem. con.
Mr. Secretary Dundas moved, that this House doth acknowledge and approve the meritorious conduct of the officers, seamen, and marines under the command of Admiral Hotham, in the late action with the French fleet.—Carried nem. con.
BRFACH OF PRIVILEGE RELATIVE TO FRANKING LETTERS.
General Tarleton moved the Order of the Day, which was for the attendance of Sir Benjamin Hammet.
The General desired that the Order of the House, relative to franking of letters, by Members of that House, be read; which being done,
He next desired that the papers presented to the House from the Post-office, relative tojhe franking of letters, by order of
^Members who are disabled by bodily infirmity, from writing the whole superscription of letters themselves, be read; which was done. It appeared, that search having been made at the Post-office for the authority by which John Hammet, Esq. had franked letters in the name of Sir 11. Hammet, it could not be found, but it was supposed by the Post-master General, that it •was lost in removing papers belonging to the office.
General Tarleton observed, that it was apparent the Hon. Member whose conduct was the cause of his motion, had/ abused the privilege of franking. That was the charge which was now exhibited against him. He was happy to see the Hon. Member now so far relieved from his bodily infirmity as to be able to.attend the House to give an account ot his conduct. He was now capable of performing every function of a Member of Parliament, instead of delegating any of them te his son. No doubt the House would be glad to hear him.
Sir Benjamin Hammet said that two years ago he was incapable of franking, from the state of his health: That he sent to the Post-office, and desired them to send him the form of the notice appointing a person to frank in his stead. He, in. consequence of this, at that time, appointed his son. He had since enjoyed several intervals of health, but had never been in. so confirmed a state, as afforded him the prospect of being able to resume the exercise of his privilege for any length of time. He pledged himself that during all that period, he had never
- once franked with his own hand. He admitted that his son had sent franked letters from London when he was in the country, and had applied the ,privilege for purposes of business,
. in which he conceived himself to have been warranted by the spirit of the orders'of the House. If he had committed an offence, he begged pardon of the Members. He then read two letters, one from Mr. Jones, Apothecary, in Gracechurch-street, another from Dr. Lettsom, stating that he was in such a situation of health, as disqualified him from carrying on business, and rendered it expedient for him to reside in the country^ He complained of the treatment which he had met with in this business, and said that however he might appear to be well at present, such was his weakness, that had the Hon. General seen him in the morning, he might have been induced to wave his motion. He was then so much indisposed, as to be dubious whether he should be able to attend the House.