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VIEW OF PUBLIC AFFAIRS.
It gives us great pleasure to state, FRANCE.-The bill proposed by the that a law has recently passed this new ministry for the regulation, we assembly for the more effectual remight, almost say for the extinction pression of the African Slave-trade. of the liberty, of the press, has passed all Spanish ships in that trade are made the chamber of deputies, after a long liable to seizure and condemnation. and vehement struggle, by a majority Their owners, fitters-out, captains, of 219 to 137. Numerous aiend, officers,and crew, are subjected, on conments were moved, and warmly sup- yiction, to the punishment of the gal-ported by the left side, but were de leys, or to hard labour in some other cidedly rejected. The new ministers, way, for ten years. All foreign vessels have thus proved their strength, at attempting to introduce slaves into the least in the representative body; but Spanish dominions are also to be seized there can be no doubt that the general and confiscated, and the persons navifeeling in France is hostile to their gating them to undergo the same puviews of policy, and should these be nishment as native Spaniards. The persisted' in, may issue in some seri- slaves carried in contravention of the vus convulsion, affecting even the laws are to be made free, and a part stability of the throne, and involving, of the proceeds of the ship and cargo perhaps, the peace of the world. The is to be applied to their benefit. We allied powers, however, could, hardly hail this law as an indication of a deem themselves justified in interfer- spirit on the part of the Spanish ing in the internal disputes of France, cortes, which promises an administrawhile those differences respected only tion of uprightness and humanity; the fulfilment or non-fulfilment of the and we trust that no time will be lost pledge given bythe kiog in the charter, in concerting with our government when he reascended the throue. Cer- the means of carrying so admirable an tainly the fiction of a social compact enactment into complete effect. France was most completely realized on that may well blush at being thus outstript occasion; and there can be no doubt by Spain in the march of benevolence that the nation has as indefeasible a and justice. claim on the government to fulfil the TURKEY:-A most remarkable siterms of that compact, as the govern; lence has of late prevailed with rement has upon the nation for submis- spect to the affairs of Turkey; and sion to the laws framed in conformity the general inference from this cirto its spirit and principles. In the cumstance appears to have been, that mean time, the French funds are gra, the differences between that power dually rising: and we lament to add, and Russia are about to be comprothe French Slave-trade is acquiring inised, and that the troubles in Greece daily a wider and more opprobrious are likely soon to terminate. Wo extent.
confess that we can discover nothing Spain.-The king of Spain has in the mere absence of idle rumours been obliged, &t length, to dismiss to justify such surmises. A note of his ministers and to choose new ones. the Turkish government addressed to Among other measures recommended the English minister would rather into the cortes, in a special message dicate that there was no intention sent down to them from the throne, on the part of the Porte to accede to is a proposition for restraining the what has been declared to be, and evils of the press. A law has passed what we believe really is, the ultimathat body to effect this object; and the tum of Russia. The assurances it rational restraints which it imposes contains are of the most vague and gave occasion, while they were under unsatisfactory kind, and so perfectly discussion, to some popular tumults. evasive that they are calculated to The .cortes, however, have remained generate distrust instead of confidence. firm; and, we must do them the justice in the mean time, neither Russia nor to say, seem disposed to uphold the the Porte appears to have relaxed existing institutions of the country, their warlike preparations; and their against the clamours or the efforts of armies, which are daily joined by faction, whether exerted in favour of fresh troops, are at no great distance the old or of the new order of things. from each other, ready, apparently, to
begia their operations with the return be made to his majesty; and the other of spring. The Greeks are busily em by Mr. Hume, which went to pledge ployed in fortifying, and in supplying the house to a large reduction of our with the munitions of war all the expenditure, and the consequent restrong places of whichtheyhave obtain- lief of the country from the pressure ed possession, in the Morea and else- of taxation. Both motions were newhere; and they evince a determina- gatived by considerable majorities ; tion, whatever may be the result of but they gave rise to some interest the negociations between Russia and ing discussions. the Porte, and at whatever cost to On the state of our negociations themselves, to achieve their deliver- with respect to Turkey, little or no ance from the Turkish yoke. We explanation has as yet been given. most ardently hope that their efforts The few words uttered by ministers will be crowned with complete suce seemed intended to produce the imcess.
pression, that their feelings were on DOMESTIC.
the side of the Greeks; but that conParliament opened on the 5th in- siderations of policy, and also of good stant, with a speech from the throne, faith to Turkey, would prevent this delivered by the king in person, in country from espousing their cause, which bis majesty presented, in sub- or from interfering at all in the ques stance, the following statements ; tion, except by way of mediation ; and That he continued to receive from this mediation, they trusted, would be foreign powers the strongest assur- successful. ances of friendship towards this coun- The state of Ireland demanded, and try: that his endeavours had been has received, prompt attention. At directed, in common with his allies, the period when the View of Public to the settlement of the differences Affairs in our last Number went to between Russia and Turkey; and that press, the disturbances in the souththere was reason to hope that those west of that island had been for the differences would be satisfactorily ad- moment somewhat calmed; but they justed : that he had derived great satis- subsequently brokeout with new force, faction from the loyalty and attach- and assumed more of the decided cha ment manifested by his Irish subjects racter of rebellion. Skirmishes have during his visit to their country, but occurred between parties of the riolers that a spirit of outrage had since arisen and the police and military, in which which he felt determined by all possi- several persons have been killed. The ble meaus to subdue--for which pur- reports of the last fortnight have, how pose it would be necessary for Parlia- ever, been again more favourable ; ment to consider whether the existing though nothing, perhaps, can be more laws were sufficient to meet the fallacious than to judge of the real exigency: that the revenue had in- state of the insurrection froin these creased, and was still increasing: that partial changes. To check the im he had made a large reduction in the mediate evil, ministers have brought estimates of the annual expenditure, before parliament- two very strong particularly in the naval and military measures; the suspension of the law departmenis: that the commerce and of Habeas Corpus, and the revival of manufactures of the United Kingdom the Insurrection Act, the provisions had considerably improved, and were of wbich are extremely coercive, such in a flourishing condition; but that as forbidding persons from assembling the agricultural interest was in a de- in groups of above a certain number, pressed state, and ought to occupy the indicting severe penalties upon indiearly attention of parliament--who, viduals absenting themselves from however, would always bear in mind, their homes at night without a lawful whatever measures they might adopt, excuse, enabling the magistrates to that in the maintenance of our public make domiciliary visits at all hours, credit all the best interests of the and to decide, if they think it rekingdom were deeply involved. quisite, in some cases, on the guilt
In the house of lords, the address or innocence of the parties, with in reply to the king's speech, was out the intervention of a jury. The carried without opposition. In the operation of these laws, however, house of commons, two amendments is confined to districts declared to were moved; one by Sir F. Burdett, the be actually in a sate of insurrection: object of which was to defer, for two The necessity of these measures was days, the consideration of the reply to conceived to be so urgent, that many
of those who lamented most deeply but to labour to gain the affection and that direful necessity, considered them confidence of their parishioners, by as indispensable at the present mo- their uniform and unceasing kindness, ment; and they were carried through even to those who reject their profesa parliament with the utmost celeriiy, sional ministrations; and if suitable the standing orders of both houses exertions were also employed by them, being suspended on the occasion. We and by the Protestant gentry, to edudo not question this necessity; but we cate the rising generation in moral trust that the plans of government for and religious habits, and to enable the pacification of Ireland, are not li- thein to read the holy Scriptures, así mited to coercive measures of this the directory of their faith and pracstern description. If they are, how. tice ; much might doubtless be effectever effectual they may be in dissió ed in a few years for the improvement pating the present alarm, the deep- and tranquillity of that country: she seated causes of all these calamitous would become too happy to wish for disturbances will remain just where any material political changes, and too they were, and be ready to break out; well informed to be open to the machias they have done again and again; nations of revolutionary demagogues. at the first favourable opportunity, or if some such course is not pursued, on the first fresh excitement. In the the mischievous spirit which is at prepresent instance, indeed, it clearly ap. sent at work in some quarters, will pears, that the disorders which have become general, and, no longer conunhappily occurred did not originate fined to local grievances and partial in political disaffection, but arose from evils—to a war with tithe-proctors and the cruel and oppressive conduct of middle men, will take a far wider certain land-owners towards their te- range, and aim at the overthrow of naptry: But, in the actual state of every established institution, at whatIreland, . what security can we have ever cost of devastation and blood. that tbat state of lawless tumult which We earnestly hope, therefore, that the has been excited by private wrongs, affecting exigencies of Ireland will not and has been directed against obnoxi- be forgotten with the cessation of the oys individuals, shall not be gradual- present alarm. Little indeed has, as ly converted into rebellion against the yet, been said in parliament, either government which is properly exert- by ministers or opposition, respecting ing itself to repress and to punish the any intended measures of amelioraviolation of order? This forms an tion; but this, we conceive, has proargument indeed for the most energe- ceeded not from any want of cordial tic measures which can be devised for interest in the subject, but from the restoring tranquillity to the distarbed number of other pressing points which districts. But it presses, if possible, have called for earlier attention, and still more strongly, on the government from the necessity of quelling, in the and on parliament, the duty of melio- first instance, the tumultuous spirit rating the condition of that unhappy which exists in some parts of the and too long neglected country. "To country. The statements of the noble encourage the agriqulture, cominerce, lord who moved the address on the and manufactures of Ireland ; to give king's speech in the house of lords, to her an able and upright local magis. (the Earl of Roden), seem to furnish a tracy, a resident gentry, and a resic pledge that, among the other measures dent laborious and pious clergy; to in prospect for Ireland, the education raise the degraded condition of her and religious instruction of the peopeasantry, and enable them to enjoy ple will occupy a prominent place. a fair portion of the produce of their His lordship dwelt forcibly on this labour; to allay the religious dissen- topic; and particularly hailed the sions which pervade every part of the much-calumniated Bible Society as the country, and ambitter the quiet of guardian angel of his country. We every hamlet within it; and to devise trust that his manly and Christian sena substitute for the tythe system, that timents, on the moral amelioration everlasting source of discontent and of Ireland, will not be without their disorder, are a few, and but a few, of due effect opon parliament and the the obligations imposed upon them. country; and especially on those of And if, in addition to this paternal his fellow-countrymen, lay or eccleconduct on the part of the rulers and siastical, who have bitherto been un, legislators of Ireland, the clergy were justly warped on these vital question's. not only to reside in their parishes, We were no less consoled by the engagement entered into by Mr. Grant, or any other practicable reduction of the late secretary of Ireland, to deve taxes. It is but a limited part of the lop to parliament his views of the reveriue over which government have state of that country, and of the reme- any controul; and even were they to dial measures which ber circumstances cut down the public expenditure to require; an engagement which was the lowest possible estimate of their bailed with such concurrent accla- opponents, the reduction would be mation as at once proved the deep scarcely, if at all, felt by the farmer. impression felt of the importance Great as is the sum demanded of him of the subject, and the strong claim for taxes, it is only a fraction of the which the speaker was allowed to sums paid by him in the shape of rent have acquired to the general confi. and poor's-rate; and, were the whole dence of the house aud of the country swept away, we conceive it would by his upright, liberal, and able admi- make hut a slight deduction froin nistration of Irish affairs.
his necessary outgoings. MinisThe state of the agricultural inte- ters have further proposed to issue rest has given birth to some length- four millions of Exchequer Bills to ened debates; and various plans have parishes, on the security of the poor's. been proposed for its relief, all of rate, to be lent to distressed agriculthem, we conceive, equally unavailing: turists. But this proposition we conThat there is a considerable degree of ceive to be wholly uncalled for by the distress selt by farmers and land- circumstances of the country; and if owners, in many parts of the country, acted upon, must therefore do more is admitted on all sides. The wbole, harm than good. There is a superhowever, seems to us to resolve itself abundance of capital in the country into this ; That the produce of the soil already; so that this measure can only is cheap from its abundance, and that add to the difficulty which is already rents have not yet been sufficiently felt in finding the means of benefilowered to suit the new circumstances cially employing it. It may enable in which we are placed.
some land-holders, indeed, to keep As for the various and discordant up their rents a little longer, and remedies that have beea proposed, some farmers to pay them; but this they have only tended to convince us can be attended with permanent ad more than ever that parliament, by vantage lo neither.- The Agricultural its interference, may du inuch harm, Committee has been re-appointed. but can do no good. The diminution Besides the repeal of the malt-tax of taxes is of course loudly insisted duty, the Chancellor of the Excheupon as one grand remedy; and it quer contemplates an immediate liquicannot be denied that, if this were dation of the one hundred and fifty-five practicable, some slight relief might millions of five per cent. stock, by follow its adoption--but less, far less, converting them into four per cent. we believe, ihan is commonly ima- stock; a measure which seeins at the gined. Ministers have yielded so present moment to be practicable, and, far to the general feeling, as to have if practicable, expedieit. agreed to remit to the amount of a We are happy to report a favourable shilling on the bushel of barley. state of the finances; a circumstance Econoiny is doubtless the duty of mi- wbich we cannot but attribute to the nisters; and we are glad that all pare cheapness of the necessaries of life, ties, ministers themselves among the which puts it in the power of the great number, concur to think so; but it is mass of the community to expend a but mockery to hope for any sensible larger portion of their earnings on exrelief to the agriculturists from this ciseable articles.
ANSWERS TO CORRESPONDENTS. X. X.; AGRESTIS; A CONSTANT READER ; C. V.P.; C. C. DUFITANS ; S. B.; JoVENIS; J. T. G.; Y. E. T.; Amicus FiveI; MATER ; S.; FIDUS AMICUS; A CONSTANT READER ; R. S. Y; L. Y;, and ANGLO-AMERICANUS, Nos. 2 and 3;
have been received, and are under consideration. We have frequently stated that we have not space to insert lists of charitable
subscriptions. We are reqnested to announce, that the remaining half of the 1001. Bank Note,
(No, 6981) has been received by the British and Foreign Bible Society.
section, on the internal evi- be imagined to have altered his dence of spuriousness in the books sentiments in the interval of writing of the Apocryphal New Testament, so short an epistle. as follows:
Again ; several parts of the above
cited letters, which profess to be 6. The apocryphal books ascribed addressed to Seneca, suppose Paul to the Apostles and Evangelists con- to have been at the time of writing tain direct contradictions to authen- at Rome; whereas others imply the tic history, both sacred and profane. contrary. That he was then at Thus, in the beginning of the Epistle Rome, is implied in the first words of Abgarus, that monarch is made of the first letter, in which Seneca to confess his faith in Christ as tells Paul, that he supposed he God, or as the Son of God: in tbe had been told the discourse that latter ead he invites Christ to dwell passed the day before between him with him in bis city, because of and Lucilius by some Christians the malice of the Jews, who intend. who were present; as also in the ed him mischief. Now this is a first words of Paul's first epistle, plain contradiction; for bad he and that part of Seneca's second, really thought him God, he must where he iells bim, he would encertainly think him possessed of deavour to introduce him to Cæsar; almighty power, and consequently and that he would coufer with him, to be in no need of the protection and read over together some parts of his city. This seems to be as of his writings; and in that part of clear demonstration as subjects of Paul's second, where he hopes for this sort are capable of receiving: Seneca's company, and in several nor are we aware of any objection other places. But, on the other that can be made, unless it be, that hand, several parts of the letters Peter, who had confessed him to suppose Paul not at Rome, as be the Son of God (Matt. xvi. 16), where Seneca (Epist. iii.) complains yet when he came to be apprehend of his staying so long away, and ed, thought it necessary to inter- both Paul and Seneca are made to pose with buman force to attempt dale their letters, when such and his rescue. (Matt. xxvi. 51. com- such persons were consuls; see pared with John xviii. 10.) To Paul's fifth and sixth, and Seneca's which it is easy to answer, that sixth, seventh, and eighth. Now, whatever opinion Peter, or indeed had they both been in the same any of the Apostles, had of Christ city, nothing can be more unreabefore Ibis tine, they seem oow to sonable than to suppose that they bave changed it, and by the pros: would have dated ibus : wbat need pects of bis danger and death to could there be to inform each other have grown cool in their opinion who were consuls ? Paul therefore
CHR IST, OBSERV. No. 243. S