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effect to the measure, they advised that another parliament should be summoned, and promised on their loyalty to retire each into his own country, and there use all their influence to bring up the public mind to the exigencies of the present situation. And what was the result? what was the conclusion of a war of twenty years? a peace dictated by Edward as he was marching back from the siege of Paris. Upon that gloriousexample Englishmen should fix their eyes, gaze, till they kindled into the zeal and intrepidity which glowed in the hearts, and distinguished the conduct, of our ancestors. What would be the event of our present contest was only known to that Being who sees every thing in their first causes and ultimate consequences. It was our part to di-charge our duty with fortitude in obedience to his moral law; and what that duty was no man could hesitate to pronounce-danger with glory, or ruin with disgrace. He concluded by pointing out to the honourable baronet, who moved the amendment, his total want of support, and joined in the requests which had already been made to him, to withdraw the notion.

Mr. Wilberforce said, that he coincided in regretting an amendment had been proposed, and wished that nothing had been said expresgive of a want of unanimity. It appeared, however, that with this exception all assented to the address, though with different views. For bimself, he must say, that he could not lament that the negotiation had been commenced, nor rejoice that it was broken off; on the contrary, he sincerely regretted with the king's minister, and the people at large, that it had such an unprosperous issue. So far from rejuicing


at the obstinate temper of the enemy, he thought it matter of serious concern; and he looked out with anxiety to the time, when, under the influence of returning reason, the French nation would negotiate with an earnest desire of that peace which was still more necessary to them than to ourselves. In the meantime he would tell the people that they must content themselves to bear considerable burdens, because all they possessed, and all that was valuable to them in life, was at stake; that as the conduct of the enemy proclaimed that the failure of the negotiation proceeded not from the king's ministers, but their own ambition, Englishmen should feel the necessity of coming forward to preserve their constitution, should reflect on what their happiness depended; and to secure those objects, should join hand and heart together, proclaiming to the world, that however divided before, they would unite for general safety. Of this universal harmony of sentiment he thought the unanimity of that night a happy omen, and he hoped the honourable baronet would withdraw his amendment, in ordes to give that beginning its full force.

Sir John Sinclair said, that he had not proposed it without due consideration, ut he candidly confessed he was not insensible to the weight of the arguments he had just heard. He sincerely wished for unanimity, and assured the house that he was willing to sacrifice not only his opinion, but any thing else which he possessed, to the welfare of the country; and would therefore cheerfully withdraw his motion.

The amendment was then withdrawn, and the address passed nem. con.

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Bill for restraining the Payment of Cash at the Bank continued. Produce of the Taxes for 1797. Army Estimates and Supplies for 1798. Account of the first Budget and the Ways and Means. Treble Assessment Bill. The Outline of it as passed into a Law. Debates upon it. The Resolution agreed to. Read a first time. Debates on the second reading-On the third reading Introduced into the House of Lords, and passed. Debate on Mr. Nicholls's Motion, that the Salaries of certain Offices shall be applied towards carrying on the War. Mr. Coke's Motion for limiting the Fees of the Tellers of the Exchequer for a certain time—rejected.


F the political business of the session was little interesting and little important, the magnitude of the details respecting the national finances have amply compensated for this deficiency. The year 1798 may be considered as the termination of the funding system in this country; a system which was now found inadequate to the emergencies of the times, and could no longer support the enormous weightwhich, without a new plan of political economy, it would have been necessary to lay upon it.

Nov. 15. The first financial measure of the chancellor of the exchequer this session, was a motion for a committee to inquire into the expediency of continuing the restriction upon the bank, which had been laid in the preceding session by an act, intituled," An act for confirming and continuing, for a limited time, the restriction contained in the minute of council of the 26th of February, 1797." He pointed out many obvious circumstances which rendered the adoption of this measure necessary. Mr. Hussey, in a subsequent stage of the bill, contended against the necessity of the restraint which had been laid upon the bank, with respect to payments in specie, and urged several

arguments to prove the present measure to be replete with the most dangerous consequences, and could by no means reconcile to his mind the idea of continuing the restriction to the extent of time proposed, one month after the close of the present war. The minister replied, that, though by the bill the restriction was nominally continued during the war, still it empowered the bank, at any intermediate period, to resume its payments in cash, by communicating its intention to the speaker of the house of commons, and giving one month's notice. It was necessary, he said, to hold out to the enemy, that the country was prepared to meet all the efforts of desperation; but it did not follow that the restriction would be continued during the whole war. The bill afterwards went through the several stages in both houses with little further opposition, and was passed into a law.

Previous to the accustomed detail of the supplies, and ways and means, for 1798, the reader will probably not be displeased with the following statement of the total amount of customs, excise, stamps, and duties, for one year, ending the 10th of October, 1797, which were laid before the house:


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The total charge on the consolidated fund for one quarter,
ending the 10th of October, 1797, was
Surplus of ditto for the same, was

On the 20th of November, the house having formed itself into a committee of supply, the secretary at war moved the usual resolutions on the army estimates. A charge, he said, had taken place this year, upon several articles which was not proportional to the articles themselves. This circumstance originated in the increase of pay voted to the officers and soldiers in the preceding year, which had created an obvious increase of expence. Notwithstanding this increase on the face of the estimate, he was happy to state to the house, that, compared with the estimate of last year, there was in the sum total a saving of about 652,000l. But to ascertain the real difference of the expence of last year and the present, it was necessary to take out of the estimate that sum which was classed Last year among the army extraordinaries: the sum was 300,000l. so that the difference of the estimate amounted to 952,000l. This was not all; another change had taken place, arising out of the increase of pay last year, Troops on foreign stations were furnished by government with provisions, and on this account 2d. per day for each man

4,304,838 857,101

£. 5,161,939

was stopped, in consequence of the new regulation of pay. This sum might be supposed to be 100,0001.; making in all, with the former two articles of 652,000 and 300,0001. a saving of above one million.

The whole of the regular force, he said, would amount to 78,627 men. These consisted of guards and garrisons, that is, the regular forces in Great Britain, and the Isles of Guernsey and Jersey, which amounted to 48,609 men, and of the troops in the plantations, including all other regular force, except that in Ireland and the East Indies, amounting to 30,018 men. The militia and fencibles had been a little reduced, and amounted to about 55,291 men. The fencible cavalry would bear some reduction, as several of them had been sent to Ireland; these, however, amounted to about 6911 men, making in all, of regular and irregular force 140,829 men.

In consequence of the suggestion of the committee of finance, it was proposed to change the fees which had been hitherto received into fixed salaries. For his own part, however, he doubted whether this would be a real advantage to the public.

It had been falsely represented, as if the tees at present amounted to a permanent and regular sum. Nothing could be more erroneous. They depended upon peace or war, and varied even during the years of war. The secretary concluded with moving the first resolution, relative to the amout of the troops under the denomination of guards and garrisons. Upon this question, general Fitzpatrick arose and suggested a material a'teration in the mode of recruiting the army. It had often been observed, he said, that in this country, where we boasted of so high a degree of liberty, the condition of the soldier was worse than in any other place in Europe. Here the soldier was bound to serve for life. In other parts of Europe the service was limited. He urged several reasons why the period of service should be fixed, the principal of which was humanity, as it

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was well known that men were too frequently entrapped into the service. This idea was not new; he had voted for such a measure twenty years ago, when brought forward by colonel Barré, and then the period of service was fixed at six years: if that bill had then passed, the nation would now have felt an additional security in knowing that there were spread over the country a large body of men accustomed to the use of arms.

The secretary at war objected strongly to the measure thus pros posed by the hon. general; and the several resolutions of supply were then moved and carried.

The house again formed itself into a committee of supply on the 22d of November, when the chancellor of the exchequer moved the following resolutions for the ensuing year, viz. That there be voted

For the suffering clergy and laity of France

For pensions and allowances to the American royalists

For secret service abroad








580 4,100 600





For bills that are or may become glue for the settlement of New
f New } $6,000

South Wales

For maintaining convicts at home • For bills on Douglas harbour

On the 24th of November, Mr. Pitt introduced what may be called his first budget, for in April he brought up another. He stated to the committee the general outline

33,325 2,500

of the measures which he proposed as the foundation for raising the supplies, and for meeting the exi gencies of the ensuing year. As the principle of that part of the


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intended plan to which he was most desirous to direct the attention of the committee was new in the financial operations of this country, at least for more than a century, he did not then call for a decision upon the business, but went fully into an explanation of it. The question was, by what means the house was to provide for the annual expences in such a manner as to enable the Country successfully to resist the avowed intentions of an arrogant foe to destroy its liberties and constitution, to cut off the sources of its wealth, its independence, and its glory? The house, in pledging it self to support the honour and interest of the country at every hazard, had acted from the dictates of sober reflection, and spoken the language of indignant feeling. He then stated, under the usual heads, the amount of the supplies which would be required. He began with the sums which would be necessary for the service of the navy. There had already been voted for this branch the sum of 12,539,000l.; and the estimates for the present year had been made out in a new form, intended, with more correctness than formerly, to present a full view of the expence that would be necessary. Instead of the former allowance of 4. per month, which was found to be inadequate, the full expence had been taken into view. But even in their present shape the estimates were not to be considered as so accurate as to exclude the possibility of any excess. Besides the above mentioned sum, there was a navy debt, owing to the excess of the preceding year above the estimate, mounting to three millions. This, however, formed no part of the expence for which it was then necesary to make a cash provision. It would only be requisite to pro

vide a sum equal to the interest; and in the then state of the funds, that provision could not be calcu lated at less than 250,0001, By a regulation adopted the year before, to prevent the depreciation of navy and exchequer bills, by providing that the period of payment should never be very distant from their date, there would be on their monthly issue of 500,0001. a floating debt of 1,500,000l. to be funded, arising out of the excess of the estimates for the year 1787. There would likewise be a similiar sum of 1,500,000l. falling due in the year 1799; but for these no cash provision was necessary, nor were they included in the supplies to be raised. The sum of 12,539,000l. was all that entered into the account of the supplies under this branch for the ensuing year.

The expence for the army, excepting only barracks and extraor dinaries, had likewise been voted. This article he took at four mil

The ex

ons, besides the vote of credit, making an excess of about 1,300,0001. at the end of the year. The account of the extraordinaries was taken at 2,500,000l. The charge under the head of barracks was estimated at 400,0001. pence of guards and garrisons, and the general articles included under this head, had already been voted, amounting to 10,112,000l. The ordnance, he said, might be taken at 1,300,000l. and the various articles of miscellaneous service at 673,000!. There remained only two articles to be noticed, the sum of 200,000l. appropriated for the reduction of the national debt, and about 680,000l. arising from deficiences of grants. From the whole then, it appeared, that the sum now to be provided for was about twentyfive millions and a half. Supposing

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