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Sir, I shall conclude with moving, “That sistent with the forms of the House for a the said Report be taken into further con- member to speak twice during the same sideration upon this day six months.” debate, he rose to explain and justify the
Sir W. Pulteney said, that the right arguments which his right hon. friend had hon. gentleman had displayed great ability adduced. The worthy baronet had and ingenuity in the speech he had made. seemed to think it absurd to dwell so long His first argument was, that passing the upon such a trifling subject; but lle ought bill was encouraging a spirit of petiy le to have considered, that if a bill was once gislation ; but the legislature had often brought into the House, however trifling interfered on subjects equally trifling, or however absurd its object might be, it The right hon. gentleman had alluded to was necessary to discuss its merits, and the importance of keeping up this breed that the blame lay with those who proof dogs, and to the warlike spirit which posed the measure, not with those who this practice infused into the people. stated their reasons for disapproving it. But it bull-baiting was so very important, if he understood his right hon. friend, he and if it was declining and getting so opposed the bill on these grounds: first, much into disuse, why not propose to
because there was no call for legislative grant a bounty for its encouragement ? interference, and certainly every one But though it was so much neglected must be sensible that the practice of bullnow, it was rather against part of the baiting was becoming every day less comright hon. gentleman's argument, that the mon; and, that though the practice was warlike spirit of the nation had not at all ever so reprehensible, there was no occadeclined. Had not as great courage been sion for passing an act to render it penal. displayed in the course of the present His right hon. friend had said, that the war, by our soldiers and sailors, as at practice was not detrimental to morals : any former period? There were many he had not ascribed to it such virtues as counties where bull-baiting was never the hon. baronet seemed to imagine; but practised. In Yorkshire, Northumber- merely asserted its innocence, or rather land, and all the northern counties, it was said, that it was not more criminal than unknown, and the inhabitants were as the daily amusements of the rich, a truth brave as any other counties in the king which all must readily allow, He had dom. But there were many places where likewise objected to the unfairness of dethis practice was far from declining. In priving the poor of their pastimes, while Staffordshire and Rutlandshire, the la- the great were left in possession of theirs, bouring poor often left their work to and many harsh laws were made that they attend on this sport for days and even alone might enjoy their favourite sports. weeks together, and thus consumed the Certainly, there could be no better prinmoney which ought to go to the support ciple for the legislature to proceed upon of their families. As to the cruelty of than to make no distinction between the the practice, it was indisputable. There different orders of the state, and that if was a great difference between it and any should be made, the comfort and hunting or shooting. In this case a poor happiness of the lower orders should be animal was tied to a stake, with no means preferably attended to, therefore they of defence or escape, and tormented and ought to put a stop to the practices of tortured for a whole day, or even for hunting and shooting before they attacked several succeeding days. In the other bull-baiting. But gentlemen seemed to sports, there was no such refinement of think, that they alone should enjoy the torture. He thought it was a dangerous sports of the field; and that they might thing to impress the minds of the poor have the exclusive possession of them, with a persuasion of the hardships of the they used their utmost exertions. If a laws under which they lived. The case foreigner had last year been allowed to was a simple one; it was merely deter- sit below the gallery, what would have mining whether it was right to put a stop been his opinion of the members of the to a cruel, brutal, and inhuman practice, British legislature? Night after night, which was degrading to the people by when the most momentous questions were whom it was encouraged, and debasing to to be discussed, he would have seen the the human mind.
benches empty, and scarcely as many Mr. Canning said, that the hon. baronet present as would constitute a quorum. had turned the tables rather unfairly upon At last, upon entering he would have his right hon, friend; and as it was incon- been astonished to see the House crowded (VOL. XXXV.]
to the very door, and would have asked with had been called “hops” was, an increaes amazement, what great business comes on of his majesty's subjects. The legislature to-night? Is a foreign power to be sub- ought not to interfere to abolish these sidized ? Is the question of peace and practices; and, above all, ought nerer war to be decided ? It would be answered, io interfere unless where there was no: these sage legislators have assembled “ dignus vindice nodus." The dignity of to consider of the best means of prevent the House would have been better preing the common people from killing a served, had it never meddled with this bird, the shooting of which affords ex- story of a cock and a bull. It was ab. cellent sport to gentlemen, and which, surd to legislate against the genius and when roasted with bread sauce, makes spirit of the country. The putting a an excellent dish at dinner. Shooting stop to bull-baiting was legislating against was the grand employment of the English the genius and spirit of almost every gentry, and their great object in the country and every age. The natural ineducation of their sons was, to make them stincts and mutual antipathies of animals good marksmen ; they delighted not to had ever been made a source of amuseprompt the tender thought,” but “to ment to man, and, notwithstanding all teach the young idea how to shoot !” All the laws that could be made, would conthis might be very well; but when they tinue to be so. were so attached to their own sports, why Mr. Sheridan said, his hon. friend should they wish to take away from the seemed to think that the proposers of the sports of the poor? He did not under present bill had been guilty of the stand whether the hon. baronet, in ex- greatest absurdity: He could see noposing the shocking cruelty of the prac- thing absurd in their conduct, but was tice of bull-baiting, meant to say it was rather inclined to apply that epithet to cruel to the dogs or to the bull. The the conduct of those who in such long amusement was a most excellent one; it and laboured speeches had opposed it. inspired courage, and produced a noble- In repelling this charge, his hon. friend ness of sentiment and elevation of mind. had said, that if a trilling and absurd bill He could see no objection to it, which was introduced, it became necessary to might not be urged against almost any enter at length into its merits; but if the other. The dogs were dangerous, and present bill was so very trifling and so accidents might happen from the bull excessively absurd, was there any occagetting loose; but if the legislature were sion for speaking long against it? Would to interfere to put a stop to every prac- it not have been better to have quietly left tice which might possibly be productive it to its fate? Such a bill spoke sufficiently of mischief to any individual, the House for itself. According to the abettors of must sit unremittingly, making new laws, the practice of bull-baiting, it was not and many whimsical laws they would only to be tolerated, but to be enmake. He himself lately, when walking couraged, and a premium held out to down Ludgate-bill, had seen an over-drove encourage its frequency. But, in recomox overturn and gore a little old woman mending bull-baiting, they had taken the in a red cloak. How would the House bull by the horns; for they said, that it have looked, had he that night brought ought not to be abolished previous to in a bill with this preamble: “Whereas the abolition of all the amusements of an over drove ox did on Ludgate-hill the rich; and that there should be no overturn and gore a little old woman in a sort of distinction between the different red cloak, be it enacted, &c. ?" Yet orders of the state. If such arguments more mischief, he was confident, was had been adduced in a speech from his done in one year by the over-driving of side of the House, the speaker would be oxen than by bull-baiting in twenty. The denounced as a Democrat and Jacobin. hon. baronet had objected to what his The right hon. gentleman had even said, right hon. friend had said with regard to that the laws were oppressive and tyrandepriving the people of amusements, and nical to the poor of this country, and had attempted to justify this by saying that they were harshly and cruelly admi. that their amusements were prejudicial to nistered. He had compared the magis. themselves and the community. But trates to senseless parents who tormented what could be more innocent than bullo their children, and said that the rich not baiting, boxing, or dancing ? The only only indulged in every gratification them. result he knew to be produced by what selves, but took a delicious pleasure in lessening the comforts and preventing The House divided : For Mr. Wind. the amusement of the poor. If these ham's motion, 43; Against it, 41. The principles were acted upon, all balls, bill was of course lost. routs, plays, masquerades, &c. should be rendered penal, or the lowest of the people Debate on Mr. Jones's Motion respecting should be allowed and enabled to participate the Warwith the Republic of France.) May in every piece of fashionable dissipation. 8. Mr. T. Jones said ;-Sir I rise to It had been said, that this was a noble bring forward a motion on the subject of diversion, and the source of all the bra- the present war with the republic of very, gallantry, and generosity of Eng. France. This, Sir, is a very awful mo. lishmen. What effects bull-baiting might ment for me; no man, I will venture to produce in Spain, he would not deter- state, Mr. Speaker, ever addressed you mine; but there the men did not employ under greater difficulties and disadvandogs to attack the bull; they attacked tages. But, Sir, I have great confidence him themselves; and he supposed, that in the justice of my cause; I have a strong if the right hon. gentleman were present reliance on the candour and indulgence of at a bull-bait, he would immediately set this House: and, furthermore, I trust the bull at liberty, and give him a fair much to that Providence which has chance for his life. In that case, if not prompted me (and which alone has elevation of mind, at least contempt of prompted me) to bring forward the moti. danger, might be generated by the prac- on which I shall have the honour to pretice; but to tie the poor animal to a stake sent to this House this night. I do assure and set upon him a number of ferocious the House, that if I conceived our laws, our dogs, was cruel, disgraceful, and beastly. liberties, our religion, or one atom of our He had been very much amused by the most glorious constitution, were in danger, right hon. gentleman's panegyric upon I would not stand up here for the purpose bull-dogs; but he did not apprehend that which I do now; but I would support the such very great evils would befall the war, and the councils which conduct it, with state though the breed should become exa| the same zeal and firmness and resolution, tinct. He did not admire the character which I did within these walls, and without of these animals to such an enthusiastic them, when I conceived they all really degree as the right hon. gentleman; they were. In a just and necessary war, to were sullen, stubborn, and treacherous ; support the interests and the honour of though, when they had once laid hold of any my country, I would undergo the severest thing, they never let go their hold; and privations, and recommend it to others so far they resembled a placeman. The so to doj; but in what I conceive an unjust, analogy which had been drawn between an unnecessary, and an impracticable bull-baiting and other exercises was by no pursuit, I think it my most bounden duty means fair. There was surely a mighty to recommend such councils as shall difference between that cowardly, beastly, produce a negotiation for peace. After execrable practice, and the noble amuse- eight years of a war of various expedients ment of cricket, and many others open and complexions, and not without intermeto the lowest of the common people. 'He diate negotiations, a new æra of the war would be happy to concur in any plan for appears : his majesty's ministers, by not extending the enjoyments of the poor; listening to the proposals of peace, have but he was confident that bull-baiting was a at length pulled off the mask, Aung away source of wretchedness to them, and there- the scabbard, and commenced what I fore this bill met with his hearty support.
must denominate (and as such denounce) Sir Richard Hill said, that the legisla- a Bellum Bourboninum. ture had frequently interfered with the Sir, if this point should be disputed, I sports of the public, as in the instance of would ask the minister distinctly, for what bear-baiting, which was now prohibited. object we are at war? I want to know, The practice of bull-baiting was gencral in plainly, for what object on earth the many counties. In Staffordshire the lower people of England are groaning under an orders spent much of their time in feasts unprecedented and inquisitorial system of of this sort: their days and nights were taxation; and for what object ministers employed in pinning down the poor bull, are at this moment promoting the common and preparing the ferocious dog. He carnage of their fellow creatures, almost trusted, therefore, that the House would over the whole world, with British gold; let the bill proceed.
if it be not for the re-establishment of the
ancient government of France ? Sir, tyrant of Seringapatam, the most inveteare we contending for the sovereignty of rate enemy of Great Britain, the tiger the seas? Thank God, we have it: Tippoo Sultan, is laid low! and here i Witness the fleets of France and Spain, must again refer the House to his majesnow cooped up in Brest harbour! Wit- ty's speech of 24th September 1799. ness the mutilated and capitulated marine Then, Sir, as to India, become the corner of Holland! Witness the brilliant and stone of Great Britain, I hope I do not transcendent victories of lords Howe, St. presume too much when I express my Vincent, Duncan, and Nelson! Witness most sanguine wishes, that the chancellor that proud day for Old England, when of the exchequer will condescend to own the captured colours of France, Spain, the existence of his favourite basis of and Holland, were deposited and conse- peace-security. crated in St. Paul's cathedral, amid the Now, with regard to Italy, as far as we blaze of majesty, amid the joy and gladness are concerned, we have by the vast exerreligion, enthusiasm, and loyalty of the tions of lord Nelson and commodore people. Sir, are we fighting for the Trowbridge, re-enthroned the fugitive safety of our commerce? We, Sir, have king of Naples; and, we have, in fact monopolized almost the commerce of the re-elected the pope-and at this moment whole world-witness our ports (perhaps the papal banner waves in triumph its too much so) crowded with the ships of proclamation of the re-establislıment of all the nations of the earth. Can we be the Romish faith to its numerous adherents fearful for the safety of our territorial scattered over the face of the earth.possessions in India Here, Sir, I must Are his majesty's ministers bent on the say a few words on the French expedition reinstatement of the stadtholderian go. to Egypt. I certainly, Sir, did, here in my vernment in Holland ? I do not wish to place, predict its destination, and did remind the House of misfortunes; but pray for its discomfiture and annihilation. we have tried that, and we know the we have experienced the truth of the result--everlasting disgrace to England former; and know that, fortunately for and Russia, and no inquiry granted. the world, the latter has taken place. God forbid any more human-nature exNow, Sir, to ascertain the magnitude of peditions, unless, if they should fail, we this expedition as to the British interests in can bring the authors of such failure, to India, I would refer the House to his ma- condign punishment! Now, Sir, I trust jesty's speech of November 20, 1798, after we shall not hear of ministers contending the naval part only was happily destroyed. that we are at war to extirpate Jacobinism. Again, Sir, I must draw the attention of That plague and pestilence, thank God! the House to his majesty's speech on the is extinct. God, Almighty God, “ hath 24th September 1799, after the accounts bruised the serpent's head.” Then, again, were received of the wonderful acts of Sir, I must ask the minister seriously, prowess of sir Sidney Smith and his for what object are we contending, but brave comrades, and to whom, Sir, you for the re-establishment of the ancient know my good intentions; and I trust government of France ? Here, Sir, I government will anticipate any proposi- hesitate not to aver, that I cannot discover tion of reward of mine on that subject that the existence of the present governBut, Sir, since that wonderful siege of ment of France is incompatible with, or Acre, the total abandonment of Egypt its destruction necessary to, the safety of has taken place. Why then, Sir, if the this country. Sir, I see nothing in it that British interests in India were, according ought to preclude a negotiation for peace. to the sentiments of his majesty's ministers, Sir,
Sir, I see quite the contrary. England announced from the throne to be “ in that has not tried the faith of republican quarter in a state of solid and permanent France. England has had reason to know security," what must they be now? But, Sir, the perfidy and ambition of monarchical if security does not exist there in full force, France; to illustrate and elucidate which let us turn our eyes to India herself, and most fully and incontrovertibly, I shall contemplate the vigilance, decision, and desire the clerk to read an address to the wisdom of the governor-general (lord Commons of the date of April 19th, 1689. Mornington), by whose prompt zeal and [This was read accordingly.] transcendent abilities, aided and suported Well, Sir, so much forthe perfidy, theamby the military skill and valour of general bition, and the Jacobinism of monarchical Ilarris and his officers and men, the black France ! Now, Sir, it will be necessary for my purpose, to show the state of the war thus violated the constitutional privileges and the necessity of peace, to go into the of the House. Gentlemen sometimes alliances and subsidies, as they have talk of the aggrandizing spirit of France: stood, and as they now stand, relatively let them, for one moment, look at Austria. to ourselves and the respective nations Has she not all the lust of power that concerned, which I shall do with all the belongs to the most desperate ambition ? brevity possible. On the 21st January Why,after theCampo-Formio treaty(bythe 1794, copies of conventions entered into secret articles of which we are taught to between his Britannic majesty and the believe she bargained for the plunder of emperor of Germany, the kings of Prus- Venice, and of which Venice we have sia, Spain, Sicily, the queen of Portugal, heard nothing since; and moreover, by and the landgraves of Hesse-Cassel
, and which secret articles we are also taught Baden, were laid on this table. Of these to believe she acquiesced in the starvation allies, Prussia took our gold, and soon of one of her own Germanic fortresses, laid down her arms, and basely deserted (Ebrenbreitstein)—why, I say, after the US. A more detestable act of meanness said treaty, has she again consented to be herer blackened the annals of history. subsidized by British gold? Why, but Spain, that miserable and inefficient govern- to promote her ambitious views, and add ment, soon fell into the possession of to her extension of territory! We all French counsels; and now her galleons know her wishes as to Sardinia. As to serve to reward our brave tars; and their Italy, the conquests of Buonaparte are all, fleet
, cooped up in Brest harbour, as I save Genoa, gone; and perhaps at this told you in my place it would be, pro- moment she has completely routed the claims her disgrace to the surrounding armies of Suchet and Massena, and is in nations of the world. of the king of possession of Genoa. I humbly think Sicily I have spoken. The unfortunate that she will, by her immense armies, deand helpless queen of Portugal goes on in stroy the balance of power in Europe, and the confederacy. The landgraves (if I despotize over the continent. Whence mistake not) made peace in sympathy arose her quarrel with Russia, but that with the elector of Hanover. A word or Suwarrow would not aid her inordinate two on Austria, generally called our ambition ? and I maintain that we are now grand ally. On looking over his majesty's fostering her projects, to our own future speeches during the war, I not only find evil; and, what is still worse, we are aboccasionally great and due encomiums on solutely pampering her with shovel-fulls that power, but I also find an interval, or of British gold. So much for griping rather exchange of praise, in favour of Austria ! Russia ; which interval and exchange of I now come to a convention between praise may fairly be traced to the defec- his Britannic majesty, and his majesty the tion of Austria after the treaty of Campo emperor of all the Russias, signed at Formio (which treaty was signed on the Petersburgh in June 1799, formed after the 17th October 1797), of which I shall defection of the Emperor from the common speak again, and more fully, when I cause. Not one word therein on Austria. come to the Russian treaty ; but I must The treaty of Campo-Formio was signed refer tbe House here to his majesty's on the 17th October 1797, and the date speeches on November 2nd, 1797, and of his majesty's first speech after this November 20th, 1798-in the former of event is the 2nd November 1797. The next which, not one word is to be found of the in succession is on the 20th November Austrians; and in the latter, not only not 1798. Not a word on Austria. And then one word, bat great stress is laid on the comes some notice of Austria again, after magnanimity of the emperor of Russia: and the campaign (a very glorious one, no here the House will not fail to recollect doubt), in Italy: but what I wish the the fact, that Austria has taken our mil. House to notice here is, the wonderful lions, and paid little or no interest 'for encomiums on the emperor of Russia, them. The House, I trust, and the na- concerning whose alliance, and the pretion, will moreover never forget the mi- sent state of it, I wish now to speak. nister sending out of the country to the Now, Sir, if any faith is to be placed in Emperor the sum of 1,200,0001., while the proclamations and manifestoes (I conparliament was sitting, and without asking fess I place none myself since the famous the consent of parliament; and that, fur. Brunswick one), no potentate ever had a thermore, he took no indemnity.for having greater claim to confidence from his allies