Thus argued the Conservatives, and not without effect, for the clause against disfranchising the freemen was carried only by a majority of twenty-eight; and in the passage through the Lords several important amendments were carried against the Government, owing chiefly to the vigorous opposition of Lord Lyndhurst. He proceeded to convert the Bill into what was called a Conservative arrangement, and when Peel's moderation was brought up against him, is said to have remarked, "Peel! What is Peel to me? D Peel!" On an amendment which he proposedto omit the clause disfranchising the freemenhe defeated the Government by a majority of 93; the numbers being 130 to 37. He followed up this victory by a motion to secure to the freemen their Parliamentary franchise, which was carried without a division. The Commons thought it better to adopt some of these alterations, however repugnant to their feelings, rather than lose the measure. The Bill, as amended, was accordingly passed on the 7th of September. London, with its numerous and wealthy incorporated guilds, was reserved for future legislation, which the lavish hospitalities of the Mansion House and Guildhall[390] postponed to a later date than municipal reformers then thought of. But it was not till the end of July that Lord Clarendon obtained the extraordinary powers which he demanded for putting down rebellion. These were conveyed in an Act to empower the Lord-Lieutenant to apprehend and detain till the 1st day of March, 1849, such persons as he should "suspect" of conspiring against her Majesty's person or Government. On the 27th of July a despatch from Dublin appeared in the late editions of some of the London morning papers, stating that the railway station at Thurles had been burned; that for several miles along the lines the rails had been torn up; that dreadful fighting had been going on in Clonmel; that the people were armed in masses; that the troops were over-powered; that some refused to act; that the insurrection had also broken out in Kilkenny,[568] Waterford, and Cork, and all through the South. This was pure invention. No such events had occurred. In order to avoid arrest, the leaders fled from Dublin, and the clubs were completely dispersed. Mr. Smith O'Brien started on the 22nd by the night mail for Wexford. From Enniscorthy he crossed the mountains to the county Carlow; at Graiguemanagh he visited the parish priest, who offered him no encouragement, but gave him to understand that, in the opinion of the priests, those who attempted to raise a rebellion in the county were insane. He passed on to the towns of Carlow and Kilkenny, where he harangued the people and called upon them to rise. He arrived at Carrick-on-Suir on the 24th, and thence he went to Cashel. Leaders had been arrestednamely, Duffy, Martin, Williams, O'Doherty, Meagher, and Doheny. The Act, which received the Royal Assent on the 29th of July, was conveyed by express to Dublin, and immediately the Lord-Lieutenant issued a proclamation ordering the suppression of the conspiracy, which should have been done six months before. In pursuance of this proclamation, the principal cities were occupied by the military. Cannon were planted at the ends of the streets, and all but those who had certificates of loyalty were deprived of their arms. The police entered the offices of the Nation and Felon, seized all the copies of those papers, and scattered the types. Twelve counties were proclaimed, and a number of young men arrested having commissions and uniforms for the "Irish Army of Liberation."

Meanwhile the changes made in the Government offices betrayed the rising influence of Bolingbroke. The Duke of Shrewsbury was made Lord Lieutenant of Ireland; the Duke of Ormonde, a noted Jacobite, was appointed Warden of the Cinque Ports and Governor of Dover Castle, as if for the avowed purpose of facilitating the landing of the Pretender; Lord Lansdowne was made Treasurer of the Household; Lord Dartmouth, Privy Seal; Mr. Bromley, the Tory leader of the Commons, joint secretary with Bolingbroke; Benson, Chancellor of the Exchequer, was created Lord Bingley, and sent as ambassador to Spain; and Sir William Wyndham, till now a friend of Bolingbroke's, succeeded Benson as Chancellor. Thus Bolingbroke was surrounded by his friends in office, and became more daring in his rivalry with Oxford, and in his schemes to supplant the[13] House of Hanover and introduce the Pretender to the British throne. GREAT SEAL OF GEORGE I. In the East Indies we this year sent over from Madras an army and reduced Batavia, the capital of the Dutch East India settlements, and the island of Java, as well as the small island of Madura, so that the last trace of the Dutch power was extinguished in the East, as it was at home by the domination of Buonaparte. In the West Indies we had already made ourselves masters of all the islands of France, Denmark, and Holland; and our troops there had nothing to do but to watch and keep down the attempts at insurrection which French emissaries continued to stir up in the black populations. We had some trouble of this kind in St. Domingo and in Martinique, where the negroes, both free and slaves, united to massacre the whites, and set up a black republic like that of Hayti. But the French settlers united with the English troops in putting them down, and a body of five hundred blacks, in an attempt to burn down the town of St. Pierre, were dispersed with great loss, and many were taken prisoners, and fifteen of them hanged.

On the 3rd of May Lord Cornwallis arrived on the coast with a squadron of transports, convoyed by Sir Peter Parker, with several ships of war. General Clinton arrived soon after, and took the command of the troops; and, in concert with Parker, he determined to attack Charleston, the capital of South Carolina. On the 4th of June they appeared off Charleston, and landed on Long Island. They found the mouth of the harbour strongly defended by fortifications on Sullivan's Island, and by others on Hadrell's Point on its north. On the point lay encamped the American General Lee. Clinton threw up two batteries on Long Island to command those on Sullivan island, whilst Parker, from the ships, was to assist in covering the landing of the troops on that Island. Clinton was informed that he could easily cross from one island to the other by a ford; and consequently, on the morning of the 28th of June,[225] Sir Peter Parker drew up his men-of-warthree vessels of fifty guns each, and six frigates of twenty-eight guns each, besides another of twenty-four guns and the Thunder bomb. But he had been deceived; what was called a ford, he found impassable. He was compelled to reimbark his troops, and meanwhile Parker's vessels, also unacquainted with their ground, ran upon a shoal, where one of them struck. In these unfortunate circumstances, the Americans, from the island and from Hadrell's Point, poured a tremendous fire into the ships, doing dreadful execution. Clinton sailed away, after this ignominious attempt to join General Howe, but some of the vessels were compelled to remain some time at Long Island to refit. An impression got abroad, soon after the Clare election, that the Duke of Wellington and Mr. Peel were wavering on the Catholic question; and in the month of August a profound sensation was produced by a speech made by Mr. Dawson, one of the members for Londonderry. Mr. Dawson was the brother-in-law of the Home Secretary. The latter represented Oxford University, having beaten Canning out of the field, as the champion of Protestant ascendency. The former represented the greatest stronghold of Protestantism in Ireland, the very last of all its constituencies to tolerate a departure from its own inspiring watchword, "No Surrender." Mr. Dawson had been a most uncompromising antagonist of the Catholic claims. We cannot wonder, then, at the startling effect, which ran like an electric shock through the country, when such a mana member of the Governmentat a public banquet, in the midst of the local chiefs of Conservatism within the walls of Derry, surrounded by all the memorials of the glorious Revolution of 1688, pronounced the word "Surrender." He was described as the "pilot balloon," to show the direction in which the wind blew in high quarters. Thus, there was a complete accordance between Mr. Sheil, the eloquent agitator, and Mr. Dawson, one of the ablest and most loyal supporters of the Government, as to the victorious power of the Catholic Association. But to have its triumphs thus proclaimed on the very spot where Protestant ascendency had been established 140 years before, and which had ever since remained its greatest stronghold, was more than could be borne by men who had just been drinking with enthusiasm "The glorious, pious, and immortal memory of William III." Mr. Dawson was, therefore, reviled and execrated; he was burned in effigy, and for years his name was almost as odious to the Orangemen as Lundy the traitor. Hitherto, the agitation on both sides had been little better than child's-play. The Protestant party rested satisfied in the persuasion that "the Constitution in Church and State" was safe in the keeping of a thoroughly Conservative Governmenta House of Lords which would not change the laws of England, and a Sovereign who would not violate his coronation oath. But when they found their standard-bearers fainting, and their most trusted commanders parleying with the enemy, their exasperation knew no bounds. The Brunswickers were now terribly in earnest. Their blood was up, and they longed for the arbitrament of the sword.

"I have to lament that, in consequence of the failure of the potato crop in several parts of the United Kingdom, there will be a deficient supply of an article of food which forms the chief subsistence of great numbers of my people.

Mr. Manners Sutton was again chosen Speaker of the House of Commons, having already presided over four successive Parliaments, occupying a period of fourteen years, during which he performed the onerous duties of his high position to the satisfaction of all parties. A week was occupied in the swearing-in of members. All the preliminary formalities having been gone through, the Parliament was opened by the king in person on the 2nd of November. The Royal Speech, which was of unusual length, excited the deepest interest, and was listened to with breathless attention and intense anxiety. The concluding paragraph of the Speech, while expressing the strongest confidence in the loyalty of the people, intimated the determination of the Government to resist Parliamentary Reform. This attitude was regarded as a defiance to the Opposition; and it roused into excitement the spirit of hostility, which might have been disarmed by a tone of conciliation, and by a disposition to make moderate concessions. Nothing, therefore, could have been more favourable to the aims of the Whig leaders than the course taken by the Administration; and if they wanted an excuse for breaking forth into open war, it was supplied by the imprudent speech of the Duke of Wellington. The Royal Speech, indeed, suggested revolutionary topics to the Reformers, by its allusion to Continental politics. The king observed that the elder branch of the House of Bourbon no longer reigned in France, and that the Duke of Orleans had been called to the throne. The state of affairs in the Low Countriesnamely, the separation of Belgium from Hollandwas viewed with deep regret; and "his Majesty lamented that the enlightened administration of the King of the Netherlands" should not have preserved his dominions from revolt; stating that he was endeavouring, in concert with his allies, to devise such means of restoring tranquillity as might be compatible with the welfare and good government of the Netherlands, and with the future security of other States.

[See larger version]

As the king was to land privately and to proceed to the Viceregal Lodge in Ph?nix Park without entering the city, it was uncertain whether he would come by Dunleary or Howth. There was an idea that he would land at the former place on Sunday, the 12th of August, and immense crowds lined the coast during the day, watching for the approach of the steamer. They were disappointed, for his Majesty arrived at Howth about five o'clock. He was accompanied by the Marquis of Londonderry, the Marquis of Thomond, Lord Mount Charles, Lord Francis Conyngham, and Mr. Freeling, Secretary to the Post Office, England. A small ship-ladder, covered with carpeting, was fixed to facilitate his landing. This he ascended without assistance, and with great agility. As the narrow pier was crowded to excess, he found[219] himself jammed in by a mass of people, who could not be displaced without throwing numbers of them into the water. Though he had reason to be displeased with the want of proper arrangements, he bore the inconvenience with good humour; indeed, his Majesty was very jolly, owing to copious draughts of Irish whisky punch with which he had drowned sorrow, during the voyage, for the loss of the queen. On seeing Lord Kingston in the crowd, he exclaimed, "Kingston, Kingston, you black-whiskered, good-natured fellow, I am happy to see you in this friendly country." Having recognised Mr. Dennis Bowles Daly, he cordially shook hands with that gentleman, who at the moment was deprived of a gold watch, worth sixty guineas, and a pocket-book, by one of the light-fingered gentry. The king also shook hands with numbers of the persons present who were wholly strangers to him. At length his Majesty managed to get into his carriage, and as he did so, the cheers of the multitude rent the air. He turned to the people, and, extending both his hands, said, with great emotion, "God bless you all. I thank you from my heart." Seemingly exhausted, he threw himself back in the carriage; but on the cheering being renewed, he bent forward again, and taking off his cap, bowed most graciously to the ladies and those around him. One of the horses became restive on the pier, but a gentleman, regardless of personal danger, led him till he became manageable. The cavalcade drove rapidly to town, and proceeded by the Circular Road to the Park. On the way there was a constant accession of horsemen, who all rode uncovered. When they came to the entrance of the Park, the gentlemen halted outside the gate, not wishing to intrude, when the king put out his head and said, "Come on, my friends." On alighting from his carriage he turned round at the door, and addressed those present in nearly the following words:"My lords and gentlemen, and my good yeomanry,I cannot express to you the gratification I feel at the warm and kind reception I have met with on this day of my landing among my Irish subjects. I am obliged to you all. I am particularly obliged by your escorting me to my very door. I may not be able to express my feelings as I wish. I have travelled far, I have made a long sea voyage; besides which, particular circumstances have occurred, known to you all, of which it is better at present not to speak; upon those subjects I leave it to delicate and generous hearts to appreciate my feelings. This is one of the happiest days of my life. I have long wished to visit you; my heart has been always with the Irish; from the day it first beat I have loved Ireland. This day has shown me that I am beloved by my Irish subjects. Rank, station, honours, are nothing; but to feel that I live in the hearts of my Irish subjects is to me exalted happiness. I must now once more thank you for your kindness, and bid you farewell. Go and do by me as I shall do by youdrink my health in a bumper; I shall drink all yours in a bumper of good Irish whisky." Mr. W. H. Freemantle, writing to the Duke of Buckingham, says, "I don't know whether you have heard any of the details from Ireland, but the conduct of the Irish is beyond all conception of loyalty and adulation, and I fear will serve to strengthen those feelings of self-will and personal authority which are at all times uppermost in 'the mind.' The passage to Dublin was occupied in eating goose-pie and drinking whisky, of which his Majesty partook most abundantly, singing many joyous songs, and being in a state on his arrival to double in sight even the number of his gracious subjects assembled on the pier to receive him. The fact was that he was in the last stage of intoxication: however, they got him to the Park." But whatever happened on board ship, and whether or not the king was "half-seas over," he acquitted himself so as to excite the boundless admiration of his Irish subjects, and the visit, which lasted twenty-two days, was an unqualified success from the spectacular point of view.

[See larger version]

[See larger version]