Imágenes de página

The justice of his observations, with respect to the share which the Catholics had in the late rebellion, we admit in the fulleft degree; but any regulation which would open the legislative councils to the Catholics, would be a measure of the highest importance, involving a variety of considerations of primary interest, and necessarily requiring the most rigid circumspection and the most serious deliberation. We are surprized that Mr. M.Kenna has not noticed the objections so strongly urged by Dr. Duigenan to the adoption of such a measure.


e can assure him they have made very considerable im. pression on minds most amicably disposed towards the Catholics, and they certainly are highly deserving of attention. We have no scruple to confess that they have had great weight with us, and, combined with other confiderations, which it is not necessary to state, have led us to entertain very frong doubts, not merely as to the expediency, but as to the conftitutional practicability, of rendering Catholics eli. gible to seats in Parliament. We are, however, open to conviction, and shall weigh the arguments that come before us, on both sides, with equal impartiality and attention,

We give full credit to the author when he says Without any leaning to the doĉtrines of the church established, there is not in the land a more true friend than the writer of this essay, to the principle of supporting the dignity and professions of its clergy. My reasons are solely political,” Mr. M‘Kenna controverts two or three posi. tions in Mr. Cooke's pamphlet, which he acknowledges to be, « in several other respects, a work of good sense and judgement.” As these points bear upon the Catholic question, we shall extract the pasage, though we have already extended this article to a consi, derable length.-

“ I deny the position that the Catholics ' demand such an alteration in the Parliamentary Conftitution as will give their numbers proportionate power.' No such thing. That would be, to demand a democracy, with all its inconveniencies. Population would then become superior to property, and the acquisitions of a Catholic would not be more safe than those of any other. But they have demanded, and ought to demand, that, without moving any man from his legal place in our society, the tenure of power Mould be property, and not party. What could any inan propose to himself by asking for a good house, where he knew there must be an earthquake? I again deny that • any new parliamentary Test Oath should be formed to admit the jurisdiction of the Pope. The jurisdiction of the Pope is as clearly afcertained as the jurisdiction of the King's Bench, and would not be let in on temporal points, by omitting the oaths which allert the King's ecclefiaftical fupremacy, and which deny the doctrine of the Eucharilt. The fupremacy of the Pope is practicali; little more than reverential; and if they are lef: to themselves, no persons are more inclined than his clergy to cavil at, and restrict it.---) am again constrained to controvert the polition, that there would be indecoruin or inconsistency in ' admitting the Catholics to feats in the Legislature, and retaining the prelent parliamentary Conftitution,' I think more Catholics might gain admittance to Parliament, under the Borough system, than if the basis of representation were landed property.” Pp. 35, 36.

We shall enter no farther into this question at present, but conclude our strictures with recommending the pamphlet as a production containing much good sense and sound argument,

[blocks in formation]

Art. XXIV. A Letter to Theobald M-Kenna, Esq. the Ca

tholic Advocate, in Reply to the Calumnies against the Orange Institution, contained in his Pamphlet, &c.; with some Observations on the new and further Claims of the Catholics, as affecting the Constitution and Protestant Establishment.

By an Orange Man. 8vo. Pp. 35. Milliken, Dublin, IT TT was not to be expected that, in the present state and temper of

parties in the sister kingdom, Mr. M*Kenna's attack on the Orange focieties would be suffered to escape without notice ; but he had conducted his discussion with such temperance and decorum, as ought, at lealt, to have secured him an exemption fro:n harshness of language, and umerited severity. His Memoire, certainly, did not appear to us to deserve the appellation of “a false and scandalous libel,” which is befowed on it by his antagonist, whose zeal is superior to his talents, though the latter are för from contemptible, His recentment, however, unguarded as he is in the expression of it, evidently arifes from a laudable principle. His object, 100, is highly honourable ; that of rescuing from public obloquy a numerous body of men, whose principles and whose conduct have been grossly mis. represented. Having laid before our readers the attack of Mr. M.Kenna, justice requires that we should present them with his adversary's defence :

“ The name of Orange Men was firit adopted by some Protestants in the county of Armagh, at a lime when the jealoufies excited by the exercite of the portion of political power, newly granted to the Catholics, had unfortunately broke out, in open hoftility, and mutual outrages, and after the violence of those feuds had cealed, Orange associations ftillconnued, and spread over many parts of the province of Uifter. In the year 1797, when the fyftem of United Irish men had attained a great degree of maturity, and was every day threatening open rebellion; and when the Caiholics, little grateful for past favours, demanded new concessions, amounting to a surrender of the conftitution, under the fantastical name of Catholic Emanci. pātion, which stood foremnost among the postulata of the rebels, then, I say, at that dangerous crisis, a plan was formed, and executed, of transplanting the Orange allociation from the North to the metropolis, and by regulating and improving the lystent, and placing at its head inen of higher rank and talent, to convert to the fupport of the Throne and the Constitution, an institution, which, from the nature of its origin and formation, might have degenerated into a ferocious spirit of perfecution. This plan was the inore beneficial and laudable, as any attempt to crush che association, in the place of its origin, would have been highly dangerous and impolitic, and therefore it was wise and expedient to direct the motions and pro. gress of a machine, which could not, with lafety, be stopped. The detaching the Preibyterians from the Union, as it was then called, was also a strong motive. I fay, that the Orange Men of Ireland, as at present constituted, are merely loyal Protestants, allocated and bound together, under no new or unknown principles, but folely for the purpose of keeping in memory, supporting, and defending the Laws, Conftitution, and Religion, as established by the great King William, at the glorious Revolution, and reviving, by a fresh obligation, their sense of a folemn and sacred duty, and their determination, as far as in them lies, to perform that duty, namely, that of tranimitting, unimpaired to their children, that Con. ftitution, in Church and State, which they received, as a most precious gift, and deposit, from the hands, and cemented with the blood, of their fathers. It hence follows, that every true and loyal Protestant, though he has not formally renewed fych his duty, by any fresh obligation, is virtually and morally bound, by the


same ties and principles, as a sworn Orange Man. I do affert, that the circuma Itances of the times called for some new spur, some farther telt, fome fresh pledge, of mutual ailiitance, and of energy in the support and defence of our laws, our religion, our persons, and our properties---for there is nothing more certain than that they are bound in one sheaf, and, should the band once be loosened, all will be scattered, trodden under foot, difiipated, and loit. We were affailed at once by the whole host of French principles, their fpurious liberty, and mock equality, the rights of man, republican fanaticism, the rage of political innovation, and the monitrous union of atheism and fuperftition, and all these had to work on a divided and discontented nation, the inajority of which considered the Conítitution and Government as a foreign ulurpation, and the established Religion an impious and danınable heresy; but more dangerous than all, many among ourselves began to be infected by a strange apathy, and luke-warmness, towards things formerly consis dered as claiming our warmelt interest and attachment. I hope, and believe, chat the Orange institution has given to us an animating and seasonable impulse, and has tended to rouze us to a sense of our danger, and our duties, and nothing leads me inore strongly to this belief, than the hatred, abuse, and fear

, manifested by the people of a certain description, against an allociation which they seem to con Sider as a bulwark, interpoled between them and the temple of the Constitution, which they seek to enter, for the purpose of violating. I do, Sir, inolt positively deny your allertion, that the Orange body laments that immunities have been granted to the Catholics, or denies them farther concessions for the purpose, or on the principle of securing to themselves, or enjoying a felfith pre-eminence over their feilow-subjects. On the contrary, the Orange-men have viewed, with pleafure, every indulgence granted to the Catholics, whereby they have been rendered more secure in their persons and properties, and the free exercise of worshipping God in any manner they pleafe; but we deprecate and oppose the granting political power to Catholics, who, we are convinced, must ever direct that power unceasingly, and always to the deltruction and overthrow of our religion, and the establishment of their own; and this they never could hope to effect, otherwise than by a separation from England, and a total change of the Constitution. It is impossible that any Catholic could honestly and zealously adminifter the affairs of a Protestant state---and if we were even content to share every thing with them, and give up all establishment and pre-eminence, they would cease to be Catholics, if they did not perseveringly aim at fupremacy, and the paramount establishment of the Popith religion. Catholics could not be content to share equal power with heretics, all civil interests must be overlooked ; the advancement of the holy church is, with them, an obligation which must take place of all others; and any of the most facred engagements, if contrary to, or not coinciding with, the interests of their church, are, by that church, diffolved, and declared void.” Pp. 7---10.

The author then adduces some instances, from the writings of Catholic priests, in fupport of his positions. But while he declares his firm conviction, that any farther concessions to the Catholics would effect the subversion of the Constitution in Church and State, he expresses, with a true Christian spirit, his deep concern, and laments, as a serious misfortune, that “ the state cannot, with safety to its existence, command and profit by the entire attachment, energy, and fervices, of so many of its subjects. Would to God it were otherwise.”

In reply to Mr. M*Kenna's obfervation, that the Catholics, as fuch, took no part in the rebellion, he admits, that the Catholic militia did their duty like brave men ; but of the yeomcn, he gives a different account.

We can better form an opinion of the part the Catholics took in the late rebellion, by recórring to the conduct of the Catholic Yeomen-men better educated and of better lituation than the Militia soldiers--men who were, or ought to have been, free agents, who louk up voluntarily the arms of their Sovereign, (a Sove

reign whom they had recently and publicly acknowledged as their greatest bene. factor,) and who bound themielves by a voluntary and solemn oath to use those arms in his defence, and that of his Government. How they fulfilled that oblie gation is lamentable to consider—what a disgusting picture of perfidy and perjury was disclosed shortly after the insurrection took place! I speak of the city of Dublin-it was discovered that nine-tenths of the Catholics in the Yeomanry corps were United Inishmen, and had taken an oath to be true to the Rebels, in direct contradiction to their sworn allegiance; and that many of them, after taking the united oath, had, on a principle of deliberate and pre-determined perjury, joined Ycomanry corps for the purpose of getting arms into their hands, learning the use of them, and turning them against us, perhaps, in the very moment of attack. The consequences might have been horrible, had they not been prevented hy a timely discov.ry: If any of the projekted nightly attacks had taken place, the local yeoman, rouzed from his bed, would have treacherously fallen by the bayonets of those whom he inighe halten to join, as friends and fellow-foldiers.

It is remarkable, that in the city of Dublin above two thousand Catholics were deíirous of admittance into the several yeomanry corps, during the six weeks immediately preceding the insurrection---and that most of these were proposed by Catholic yeomen, who afterwards either proved to be Rebels, or were difarmed on strong sufpicion. Thele facts are notorious and recent; they are open to investigation, and if not founded, may be disproved." Pp. 22, 23.

The author combats several other positions advanced by Mr. M.Kemna, and strenuously opposes any farther concellions to the Catholics in the present state of things.

Art. XXV. Impartial Remarks an the Subject of an Union,

in Answer to Arguments in Favour of that Measure; in which the Sentiments of the Catholic Body are vindicated from the Charge of favouring the Project. With a Reply to Mr. M* Kenna's Memoire, By A Farmer. 8vo. Pp. 48. Jones, Dublin.

1799. THES "HESE remarks are any thing but what they are stated to be in

the title-page, for the most glaring partiality pervades every page. The attack on Mr. Cooke's pamphlet is most impotent; con. taining assertions unsupported by proof; erroneous conclusions from false premises ; and wanton aspersions contradicted by facts. For examples to demonstrate this last charge we refer the reader to Pp. 35 and 38. As it contains no one argument that has not been much more ably difcuffed by other writers on the fubject, any analysis of, or extracts from, the tract would be superfluous. What the author calls the vindication of the Catholics, and his reply to the “Memoire," are included in less than eight pages. The vindication was, to say the least of it, unnecessary; for Mr. M*Kenna expressly declared, that he spoke the sentiments of an individual, and not those of any body of men. The Catholics, we should think, will not be very much obliged to this writer, and he must be very shallow indeed who is not senlible that one such advocate as Mr. M'Kenna is worth a thousand such officious vindicators as the “ Farmer."



Art. XXVI. To be or not to be, a Nation? that is the

Question. 8vo. Pp. 31. Mehain, Dublin. 1799.

FLIPPANT, puerile, and empty, this writer disgufts alike with his vain attempts at wit

, and with his open display of folly. He considers Ireland not merely as an independent, but as a separate, ftate, and thence he maintains that she can derive, from the exertions of her own Legislature, every advantage that can poslibly accrue from an Union with Great Britain. He forgets the necessary consequence of this fyftem ;-. that England, being also a separate ftate, might enact laws for the protection of her own trade, that would prove highly injurious to the prosperity of Ireland. Arguing on such false premises, his conclusions are all, erroneous. His ideas of equity are fingular :-" If an Union of two Legislatures is to be founded on the principles of equity, let the number of members from each be equal.” And he infilts that the adoption of this notable plan could alone secure the rights of Ireland from invasion. His ideas are so confused that he cannot discover the truth of Mr. Cooke's self-evident proposition, that by the Union, that is, by the consolidation of the two kingdoms into one Empire, the Irish Catholics would be de. prived of the use of that argument which they now derive from the superiority of their numbers. This, he gravely tells us, could only be effected by the exchange of three millions of English Protestants for the like number of Irish Catholics, and “ this service would einploy all the vessels in the British Navy !”

He displays equal fagacity on another point; because the Statute of the 23d of Geo. III. acknowledges the right of the people of Ireland to a separate Legislature, he deduces, as a necessary confe. quence, that such right cannot be voluntarily exchanged for other rights and privileges more conducive to the welfare and happiness of that people. Our readers, we conceive, will require no farther fpeci. men of this writer's abilities.

Art. XXVII. A Letter addressed to the Gentlemen of Eng

land and Ireland, on the Inexpediency of a Federal Union between the two Kingdoms. By Sir John J. W. Jervis, Bart. 8vo. Pp. 71. Whitworth, Dublin. 1798.

FTER toiling through seventy pages of most diffusive matter adopt, as applicable to the author,' the observation applied by Goldsmith's vicar to his talkative spouse-" my wife kept up the cena versation, but not the argument." In good truth, we never laboured so much, and with so little success, to understand the reasoning of any writer; the worthy Baronet has, indeed, told us, in very piain


« AnteriorContinuar »