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burg, the emperor of Austria's brother, has shewn the same sentiments, and has declared that if the Austrians advanced to his territories, he should retire, if necessary, across the Rbine-so well are the insanity and the invectives of Vienna appreciated! The regiments of the petty princes, all the allied troops are eager to march against the enemy.-A notable circumstance, which posterity will remark as a fresh proof of the signal bad faith of Austria, is, that on the day she wrote the annexed letter to the king of Bavaria, she published, in the Tyrol, the proclamation signed by general Jellachich. On the same day she proposed to the king to be neutral, and invited his subjects to rise. How can we reconcile this contradiction, or rather how justify this infamy?
[To the Bulletins are annexed a Proclamation from the Austrian general Jellachich, inviting the Tyrolese to throw off the Bavarian yoke, and to resume their allegiance to their old master; and a letter from the archduke Charles to the king of Bavaria, soliciting his co-operation in a war undertaken for the general deliverance of Germany.]
Charles, who cut off from his communication with the Inn and Vienna, has no other resource than that of retiring into the mountains of Bohemia, by Waldmanchen and Cham.-With respect to the emperor of Austria, he appears to have been before Passau, in order to besiege that place with three battalions of the Landwerk.-All Bavaria and the Palatinate are delivered from the presence of the enemy. At Ratisbon, the Emperor passed several corps in review, and caused the bravest soldiers to be presented to him, to whom he gave distinctions and pensions, and the bravest officers, to whom he gave baronies and lands.-Hitherto the Emperor has carried on the war almost without equipage and guards; and one has remarked, that in the absence of his guards, he had always about him the allied Bavarian and Wirtemberg troops; wishing thereby to give them a particular proof of confidence.-A report has been circulated that the Emperor has had his leg broken. The fact is, that a spent ball grazed the heel of his boot, but did not touch the skin. Never was his majesty in better health, though in the midst of the greatest fatigue. It has been remarked as a singular fact, that one of the first Austrian officers made prisoners in this war, was the aide de camp of prince Charles, sent to M. Otto with the famous letter, purporting that the French army must retire. The inhabitants of Ratis-diers of Cæsar and the armed cohorts of bon having behaved very well, and evinced that patriotic and confederated spirit which we have a right to expect from them, his majesty has ordered that the damages done shall be repaired at his expence, and particularly the rebuilding of the houses burnt, the expence of which will be several million-All the sovereigns and territories of the Confederacy evince the most patriotic spirit. When the Austrian minister at Dresden delivered the Declaration of his court to the king of Saxony, the latter could not contain his indignation" You wish for war, and "against whom? You attack and you inveigh against a man, who three years "ago, master of your destiny, restored "your states to you. The proposals made "to me afflict me; my engagements are "known to all Europe; no prince of the "Confederacy will detach himself from "them."-The grand duke of Wurtz
Soldiers, you have justified my expectations. You have made up for numbers by your bravery. You have gloriously marked the difference that exists between the sol
Xerxes.-in a few days we have triumphed in the three battles of Tann, Abensberg, and Echmuhl, and in the actions of Peising, Landshut, and Ratisbon. One hundred pieces of cannon, 40 standards, 50,000 prisoners, 3,000 waggons, full of baggage, all the chests of the regiments-Such is the result of the rapidity of your march and your courage. The enemy, besotted by a perjured cabinet, seemed no longer to preserve any recollection of us.-They have been promptly awaked-You have appeared to them more terrible than ever. Lately they crossed the Inn, and invaded the territory of our allies. Lately they presumed to carry the war into the heart of our country. Now, defeated and dismayed, they fly in disorder. Already my advanced-guard has passed the Inn-before a month is elapsed we shall be at Vienna.→From our Head-quarters, Ratisbone, 24th April.-(Signed) NAPOLEON.
LONDON:-Printed by T. C. HANSARD, Peterborough - Court, Fleet - Street; Published by R. BAGSHAW, Brydges-Street, Covent-Garden :-Sold also by J. BUDD, Pall-Mall.
VOL. XV. No. 23.]
LONDON, SATURDAY, JUNE 10, 1809.
On the 12th of May, 1809, MR. MADOCKS Inade, in the House of Commons, a charge in substance as follows: "I affirm, then, that MR. Dick purchased a seat in the House of Commons for the borough of "Cashel, through the agency of the HONOURABLE HENRY WELLESLEY, who acted for, and on behalf of "the Treasury: that, upon a recent question, of the last importance, when Mr. Dick had determined to "vote according to his conscience, the noble Lord, CASTLEREAGH, did intimate to that gentleman the necessity of either his voting with the government, or resigning his seat in that House; and that Mr. Dick, suoner than vote against principle, did make choice of the latter alternative, and vacate his "seat accordingly. To this transaction I charge the Right Hon. Gentleman, MR. PERCEVAL, as being privy and having connived at it. This I will engage to prove by witnesses at your bar, if the House "will give me leave to call them.”- At the end of a long Debate upon this subject, the question was taken upon a motion for an Inquiry into the matter; that there appears from the reports of the proceedings, published in the papers, to have been 395 Members present, that, out of 395, only 85 voted for the motion, which, of course, was lost, there being 310 out of the 395, who voted against the motion for Inquiry.In the year 1902, this same MR. PERCEVAL, being then Attorney General, prosecuted PHILIP HAMLIN, a Tinman of Plymouth, for having committed the crime of offering Mr. Addington £.2,000, to give him a place in the Custom House; upon this occasion, Mr. Perceval demanded judgment upon the said Hamlin, for the sake of PUBLIC JUSTICE; and the Judge, after expatiating upon the "incalcu "lable mischief," to which such crimes must naturally lead, sentenced the said Hamlin to pay a fine of a hundred pounds to the king, and to be imprisoned for three Calendar months.-N. B. This is the same Mr. Perceval, who, in 1807, set up the Godly cry of "No Popery."
And although I am at all times unwillBELONGING to this subject, nothing more ing to request the attention of the Comimportant has taken place, than the Speech, mittee of this House, thinking that I should made by the SPEAKER of the House of Com-render them no service by mixing in their mons, on Thursday, the 1st of this month. general Debates, and feeling also the inThis Speech, of which I am fully war- convenience of being precluded afterwards ranted in saying, that I have a correct re- by my other duties in this House from port, I shall here insert, at full length; explaining or defending my opinions in and, afterwards offer, in the shape of a any subsequent stage of discussion; neverLetter, such observations upon it, as aptheless there are some subjects of a parapear to me necessary, and likely to be mount importance, upon which I do conuseful. This Speech was made in a ceive that I have a personal duty imposed Committee of the whole House upon MR. upon me (and perhaps the House may CURWEN'S Reform bill; and, I beg the reader, think in some degree an official duty) to as he proceeds in the perusal, to contrast the doctrines and the sentiments, which The Question now before us, is no less the Speaker has now thought proper to express, with the doctrines and the senti- than this-Whether Seats in this House ments proclaimed, by both sides of the House, shall be henceforth publicly saleable? — A upon Mr. MADOCKS's motion of the 12th proposition, at the sound of which, our of May; and to apply these doctrines and Ancestors would have startled with indigsentiments to the notorious cases of CASTLE-nation; but a practice, which in these REAGH, HENRY WELLESLEY, and PERCEVAL, days and within these walls, in utter oband to what was advanced, upon Mr. livion of every former maxim and feeling Madocks's motion, by those more imme-of Parliament, has been avowed and jusdiately connected with the borough-mongers, that is to say, those who sell and deal in Seats in Parliament.
OF THE RIGHT HON. THE SPEAKER:
Thursday the 1st of June, 1809. MR. WHARTON,
BEFORE you proceed to put the Question of Reading this Bill a first time, I wish to offer myself to your notice :
deliver the sentiments which I entertain: -And such is the present.
We are now, however, come to a pass from which we have no retreat. this Question we must decide, Aye or No. To do nothing is to do every thing. If we forbear to reprobate this trallic, we give it legality and sanction. And unless we now proceed to brand and stigmatize it by a prohibitory Law, I am firmly persuaded that even before the short remnant of this Session is concluded, we shall sce that Seats in this House are advertised for
sale by Public Auction: And we shall have brought a greater scandal upon Parliament and the Nation, than this country has ever known since Parlianrents have had an existence.
It is essential to the very idea of Elections that they should be free. Such is the antient language of the Statute of Westminster in the reign of Elward the First, speaking of Elections in general; According to the course which these such also is the modern language of the Debates have taken, three distinct points Bill of Rights, with reference specifically have been put in issue: First, Whether to the Election of Members to serve in the Trafic be a Political Evil; in the next Parliament; and we have a memorable place, Whether it be any Parliamentary instance in the year immediately followOffence; and lastly, Whether there is anying the Revolution of the sense in which safe and practicable Remedy by which this mischief can be put down for the time
Sir; Into the first point, Whether this be a Political Evil, I do not mean to enter at any length; nor is it necessary to my
this fundamental principle was understood, in the case of the Cinque Ports; for by a Statute in the Second of William and Mary, it is not enacted only, but declared, that for the Lord Warden to nominate or recommend any Member to serve in any Port or Place within his jurisdiction, was a violation of the Freedom of Parliaments, and contrary to the Antient Laws and Constitution of the Realm.
In the description of these Offences, which constitute a Violation of our Privileges, there is nothing technically narrow, but the Rule is to be tried by its substantial Effects. Force, Fraud, Corrupt practices and undue influence of any sort, by which the freedom of Elections is coutrolled, have been reprobated in all ages.
ble before the Committee of Privileges; if they touched the Seat, they were cogniza ble in the Committee of Elections. At a later period, when these Committees were
That the Influence of Property in maintaining Civil Order is of the highest importance, no man living can doubt: it is the firmest cement to all the relations of social life, it gives Stability to the State, and Prosperity to the Empire. That the Possessions of Property may, and must, and ought to have a predominating Influence in the Election of Members to serve in this House, I think is equally clear. But, that, abandoning all their legitimate rights of Influence, and laying aside all the These offences, if pursued as matter of virtuous and generous Motives of Friend-personal delinquency, were antiently triaship, Affection, and the fair preference of Talents and Integrity to fill places of such high Public Trust, they should go to a shameless and open market; that they should sell the Attachment of their Friends, Neigh-united, all such offences were of course bours, and Dependents, for dry and sordid gain; and sell it to utter Strangers, of whose Qualities they can have no other Estimate than the Weight of their Purses; this does indeed appear to me to be a great Political Evil, and a great Public Grievance. It degrades and debases the habits of the higher ranks of life, who confess their own sense of the nature of these transactions, by the concealment with which they seek to cover them: It taints also and contaminates the general Character of Parliament: and it furnishes the most formidable weapons to those who are professing, and I am will-find abundant traces of the inquiries which ing to believe sincerely professing, to reform, but as I fear, are, in truth and in fact, by the tendency of their endeavours, labouring to subvert the entire System of our Parliamentary Representation. With respect, Sir, to the next Question, whether these practices are any Parliamentary Offence. That it is a high Parliamentary Oflence, every page of our History, Statutes, and Journals, appears to me to bear evidence.
tried indiscriminately before this joint ju-, risdiction. And so things continued until happily the functions of the Committee of Elections were transferred by the Grenville Act to a better Tribunal. But the general conservation and vindication of our Rights and Privileges, except so far as divested by special Statute, still resides, as we all know, in the House at large, and its Committee of Privileges.
Whoever therefore looks into the proceedings of all these several jurisdictions according to their different periods, will
have been instituted, and the censures which have followed upon offences of all these descriptions. And from the period of the Revolution, we may see them exemplified in the prosecutions conducted by sir Edward Seymour against the Directors of the New East India Company in the reign of King William; in the Reports of the Secret Committee upon the last ten years of Sir Robert Walpole's administration during the last reign; in the charge brought
against Lord North upon the Milbourn Port Election, and the general character of these Offences is evidenced by all the language of similar proceedings, in our own time.
But, Sir, beyond this:-Practices of this description are not only offences by the Law of Parliament, they have been long since adjudged to be criminal by the Common Law of the Realm.
What, therefore, it remains for us to do is plain. And as our Ancestors, when they found the censures of Parliament, and the decisions of the Common Law, were insufficient to restrain the growing practice of Bribery to Voters, proceeded to superadd the cumulative penalties of the Statute Law; so also it is for us, who have before us such flagrant proofs that the traffic in Seats has broken through the existing cheeks, to put it down by a new Prohibitory Law.
The Bribery of Votes was adjudged by the Court of King's Bench, in the early part of the present Reign, to have been a Common Law Offence, even though no precedents could be adduced to show it, and to have been punishable as such long before its increased prevalence made Parliament deem it necessary to restrain it by special Statutes. And in like manner any previous agreement or compact to control the Votes of Electors (even although the Electors are not themselves bribed) has been adjudged to be illegal upon genera! grounds of policy aud jurisprudence. Such was the Case which arose in the Burgh of Stirling in the year 1773, where some of the Town Council had entered into a corrupt Agreement to divide the Profits of the Burgh, and what they were also pleased to call the Parliamentary Profits, and to bring no person into the Magistracy but such as should vote with them upon all Parliamentary Elections; under Of course, the honourable Member who this Agreement, Elections were had and has brought in the present Bill will not passed unanimously. But when this Agree- be surprized that I should think he has men was discovered and questioned, al- fallen short of the true point, in not makthough it was manifest that the other ing it declaratory. As to the main part Electors were neither party nor privy to of his enactments, he will also be prepared the Agreement, nor had profited thereby, for my dissenting from the use of such the Court of Session not only declared the lax and wide modes of expression as he Agreement itself to be illegal, unwarrant has employed; a defect into which it is able, and contra bonos mores, but also that no peculiar reproach for him to have falby reason of the undue influence under len, as our modern forms of legislation which such Elections were had, all those have too much involved all our provisions in Elections were void and null. This Judg-language so cambrous that it is generally ment afterwards came by Appeal to the House of Lords, and was there, in November 1775, affirmed.--At a later date, another question of this sort came before an Election Committee under the Grenville Act, from the county of Berwick, in 1781. The Petition there stated that two of the Candidates had by themselves, and friends, combined to control the Election, by chusing first one of those two Candidates, who should sit for a certain number of years or sessions, and then that the other should be elected to succeed him. The Election Committee beforewhom that Case was tried and proved, reported the Agreement to be corrupt and illegal, and voided the Election.
And now, Sir, we are brought to the last consideration--whether we can by any safe and practicable Remedy suppress the mischief: And of this I have no Goubt, if with sincerity and diligence we apply ourselves to the task.
According to my views of this subject, the Committee will perceive, that I nost naturally desire in the first place that our Law should be in itself declaratory; lest we should impair the principle which we are endeavouring to strengthen. The definition or description of the offence should also be marked with such a degree of precision that we may not include in it things or consequences beyond our own intentions. And the prohibitory provisions should be such as are most analogous to the rest of our Election Laws upon corresponding cases.
difficult to discover their sense and sub stance, through the multitude of words with which they are overcharged. Bat beyond this, it is quite impossible for me to consent to that part of his proposed enactment which makes the tenure of Seats in this House dependent upon Judg‐ munts to be obtained in the Courts below, or in any way puts the trial of our own Rights out of our own accustomed jurisdiction.
With regard to the Cath proposed by the hon. gentleman, it is such in its present form as I should entirely object to. I do not know that a proper Oath for a proper purpose is in itself an exception
able provision by law. Nor do I think that for solemnity or importance, so long as any Oaths are used in Election Laws, that any occasion for it could be more suitable; agreeing as I do very much with sir William Blackstone in opinion, that the Oath, if administered to the elected, would be far more effectual than when given to the elector. Nevertheless, knowing that to many persons any form of Oath whatever upon this subject would be highly obnoxious, and not thinking it indispensably necessary to the efficacy of the Bill, I should not be disposed to insist upon it.
What I should require would be, that the party who purchased should not reap the profit of his bargain, but should fall under the same disability as that enacted by the Act of Wm. the Third, which I think would be improved also, ifit excluded him not for that vacancy alone, but for the whole Parliament. The party who received the price of his venality should also of course forfeit it, with any further penalty which it might be thought right to superadd.
And, beyond this, I would think it a proper course to declare it by positive law, what is implied by the judgments which I have already cited-that by such traffic each party becomes guilty of a
mate passing into a law; on my own part most cordially and earnestly hoping for its success, as a measure which has now become indispensable to the honour of this House and of the Country.
INDEPENDENT PEOPLE OF HAMPSHIRE.
What Sort of Reform ought to be made?
I. In stating the question, which we now have to discuss, it is impossible to overlook the circumstance, that there is one sort of reform now on foot; that it is now actually before the House of Commons; and, which is, in a most distinguished degree, worthy of your attention, this measure has been entertained, has been kindly received, nursed and dandled, rocked, swathed, and pap-fed by...... whom? Why, by those very persons, who voted against censure upon Castlereagh, on the motion relating to his offer to swap a writership for a seat; yes, by those persons, who, when Mr. Madocks distinctly charged Castlereagh, Henry Wellesley, and Perceval (the Tinman's prosecutor), with trafficking in a seat; those persons, who, upon this occasion, voted 310 to 85, that there should be no inquiry; and many of whom openly avowed, that the thing was not only common, not only in general use by all ministers, but a thing perfectly proper. Well, now mark, that these persons, on both sides of the House, approve of MR. CURWEN'S bill; and, when you consider what their conduct was upon Mr. Madocks's motion, you will eaşi
Upon the whole, Sir, that for which I am most anxious is the establishment of the principle; being firmly persuaded that honourable minds, which may have hitherto deviated from what I think was the strait path of their duty, or may have been 'made to vacillate by the practices which they saw prevailing around them with impunity-will shrink from them with abhorrence, when they find them condemned by a specific law: And other men, if ac-ly guess what they expect from this bill. tuated by motives less honourable, will be restrained by fears not less efficacious.
II. This consideration alone furnishes a pretty good presumptive proof, that Mr. Curwen's bill is not at all calculated to answer any useful purpose; to contribute, even in the smallest degree, towards the checking of those manifold corruptions, and that waste of the public money, under which the nation is now suffering so much disgrace and misery. But, we will not let off this bill so lightly; it requires to be fully exposed; for, under the garb of "a
I shall therefore listen with satisfaction to any amendment that goes this length, accompanied by such brief and distinct provisions as may give a reasonable security that its execution will be accomplished. And I shall be contented to lay aside for the present all questions of doubtful policy or difficult expressions; thinking it better to reserve them for future experience, and, if necessary, for future legis-" reform," it tends, in my opinion, to the lation.
I would presume also to recommend this course to the House, as the most prudent and most likely to contribute to the further progress of this Bill, and its ulti
prolonging, if not perpetuating, the traffic in parliamentary seats, and of course, all those infamous bargains, by which the blood as well as the treasure of the nation become the object of barter. Before,