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the same line of conduct pursued, as if a robber were to enter the house of a man, and say, Let me take away such things as I please, and I will lock the door and keep out any other thieves; but if you refuse the offer, then take your chance of losing all." The doctrine which had gained so much ground, and in conformity to which this plan had been now introduced, was that of universal representation. But this measure, he was convinced, was only an illusion, from which no solid benefit. would ever result. The influence of the country gentlemen in parliament was always known to preponderate, when they were united in opinion. Mr. Burke took a very extensive view of the present state of our representation, and asked if the proprietors of boroughs had not been already sufficiently paid in the profusion of the honours of this country, without now opening the purse of the nation. He adverted to the con duct of the reverend Mr. Wyvill. He took particular notice of the variety and extent of the reverend gentleman's correspondence, which he said, was not confined to the chancellor of the exchequer, or to the volunteers of Ireland. Lord Shelburne and Mr. Macgrugar had not been forgotten; and other celebrated names had been handed down to posterity by this reforming divine. After reading several extracts from this correspondence, he proceeded to remark, that the right honourable gentleman who had formerly submitted to the House two plans for a more equal representation of the people, each of which was perfection itself, now came forward with a third, still more perfect than either of the former. He would allow that the present plan had many more palliatives in its composition than either of its brethren, for its operation was not likely to affect any of the members of the present parliament; and he could not sufficiently admire the address of the right honourable gentleman, in thus rendering his plan palatable to all parties. For his part, he considered the whole of it as a mere delusion, an ignis fatuus, calculated to mislead and to bewilder. He insisted that the right honourable gentleman had abandoned the ground on which he originally took up this question.

The House divided on Mr. Pitt's motion; Yeas

248. So it passed in the negative.

174: Noes


May 19.

THE House having this day resolved itself into a committee to take into further consideration the Irish propositions, Mr. Pitt moved the third resolution: viz. "That towards carrying into full effect so desirable a settlement, it is fit and proper that all articles, not the growth or manufacture of Great Britain or Ireland, should be imported into each kingdom from the other reciprocally, under the same regulations, and at the same duties, if subject to duties, to which they are liable when imported directly from the place of their growth, product, or manufacture; and that all duties originally paid on importation into either country respectively, except on arrack and foreign brandy, and on rum, and all sorts of strong waters, not imported from the British colonies in the West Indies or America, shall be fully drawn back on exportation to the other." The resolution having been opposed by Lord North, and supported by Mr. W. W. Grenville,

Mr. BURKE remarked, that the language held out by the right honourable gentleman who spoke last, at the close of his speech, reminded him of sentiments somewhat similar that had been delivered from the same bench some few years ago relative to the American war; but he hoped he had heard them this day under better auspices. When the American war was about to commence, the language of the House was, the supremacy of parliament must be maintained.' But alas, this supremacy was soon renounced, and revenue became the fashionable word; so that the pursuit after contribution had succeeded the pursuit after dominion. The supremacy of the parliament over Ireland

had been renounced; but the idea of contribution followed closely at the heels of the renunciation of dominion. He hoped in God the conclusion of this business would not be like that of the contest with America! What had fallen from the right honourable gentleman who spoke last, made it necessary that he should ask the chancellor of the exchequer a question, relative to the fund from which this contribution was to arise. Though he was not pleased with the notion of making Ireland pay any tribute as a compensation for what we were to concede; yet, since she was to pay it, it would be well worth the while of the committee to be informed of the probable amount of that tribute. He wished to know, then, whether the hereditary revenue was to be separated from every other fund in Ireland, so that the charges of the public might not first exhaust this before any other was touched: and also, whether the expence of collecting was to be charged upon it, and deducted from it, before any disposable surplus could come out of it?

Mr. Pitt expressed his surprise, that Mr. Burke had been able to find any analogy between the contribution which might be expected from Ireland in consequence of the adjustment that was then under consideration, and the revenue which some gentlemen had had it for their object to raise in America. The question in the latter case was, whether men interested in alleviating the burthens of themselves and their constituents, should, by the supreme power of parliament, impose taxes upon persons whom they did not represent, and raise a revenue to be applied to the ease of England, without leaving to the Americans the right of ascertaining either the quantum of that revenue, or the mode of raising it? The contribution from Ireland was to be levied and granted, not by England, but by the very representatives of the people of Ireland; not for the purpose of easing the burthens of any part of the king's dominions, but to maintain the navy, by which the common interests of both England and Ireland were to be defended and supported. Could any man see any one feature in this case that resembled, in the least degree, the picture of the rise and progress of the American contest? He hoped the right honourable gentleman's comparison of two questions that had not a shadow of resemblance to each

other, would not be carried over to his native country without this reply to it; or if it should, that the good sense and penetration of his countrymen would prevent them from thinking, that in the application of a surplus of the sinking fund to the defence of the common interests of both kingdoms, there was the most distant idea of making one pay tribute to the other. The hereditary revenue, he said, let it produce what it would, would be charged only with 656,000l.; all above that would be applied to the use of the navy; and the Irish parliament would of course add to the 656,000l. such other funds as should be sufficient for the different establishments both civil and military; this revenue would, of course, be charged with the expences of collection.

Mr. BURKE replied, that the right honourable gentleman had dealt by him as he had done by Ireland, he had given a great deal more than had been asked. Mounted aloft on

the shoulders of the right honourable gentleman on his right hand *, the chancellor of the exchequer seemed to stand in defiance of attacks, and, supported by that coalition, to brave every opposition. He envied not the statue. its pedestal, nor the pedestal its statue. The right honourable gentleman had thought proper to remind him, that he was a native of Ireland. It was true he was an Irishman; and he conceived much was due by every man to the place of his nativity, but that this duty ought not to absorb every other. When another country was generous enough to receive a man into her bosom, and raise him from nothing, -as this great country had raised him to stations of honour and trust, and conferred upon him the power of doing good to millions, such a country had claims upon him not inferior to those of that which had given him birth. It behoved such a man to reconcile, if possible, the two duties: however, should they unfortunately point different ways, it was his bounden duty, either to return the trust reposed in him by the adopting country, or else con



*Mr. Jenkinson.

sider its interests as paramount to every other upon earth. To consult the interests of England and Ireland, to unite and consolidate them into one, was a task he would undertake, as that by which he should best discharge the duties he owed to both. To Ireland, independence of legislature had been given; she was now a co-ordinate, though less powerful state: but pre-eminence and dignity were due to England; it was she alone that must bear the weight and burthen of empire; she alone must pour out the ocean of wealth necessary for the defence of it. Ireland and other parts might empty their little urns to swell the tide; they might wield their puny tridents; but the great trident that was to move the world, must be grasped by England aloneand dearly it cost her to hold it. Independence of legisla ture had been granted to Ireland; but no other independence could Great Britain give her without reversing the order and decree of nature. Ireland could not be separated from England; she could not exist without her; she must for ever remain under the protection of England, her guardian angel. From these principles, he trusted the committee would perceive, that in what he should say, he was influenced solely by the desire of promoting the joint interest of the two kingdoms.


Mr. Burke then returned to the hereditary revenue. said that he should be sorry if it were to be so understood, that what was now to be done for Ireland should be conditional, viz. that there should be a surplus of the hereditary revenue, and that it should be applied towards the support of the navy; for he was very much afraid that no such surplus would ever exist, and he would state his reasons for this apprehension. The revenue, in the first place, did not produce at present above 630,000l. and when the expense of collecting, the amount of bounties, and drawbacks operating as bounties, should have been deducted, the remainder would be little more than 333,000l. Now, here was so little of a surplus, that there was a deficiency of 323,000l. which would be wanted, not to make a surplus, but to make 656,000l. the sum that must be applied to the support of

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