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other societies. If Christians do not ear- had apprised him that his disorder was nestly and unitedly arouse themselves to alarming; which having once done, he kept meet this increasing evil, it must speedily up his spirits as far as possible by the end in the most appalling national profili- most favourable interpretation of sympgacy, and the curse of God upon the land. toms.-Such is the opinion of this much
There were nineteen persons convicted respected physician, and the opinion of forgery during last year; but not one of which very generally prevails throughout them suffered death. It is consoling to the medical profession. But, on the other perceive to what an extent the efforts of hand, this very practice is often strongly enlightened and benevolent persons have censured, on ihe ground that the patient thus practically succeeded, even while the is thus lulled to repose, instead of being law still nominally retains much of its Dra- awakened to the solemnities of his condiconic form. Let the friends of religion tion and becoming anxious for bis eternal and humanity take courage from such a welfare. There is frequently a visible and fact, to redouble their efforts in every right painful struggle between the physician and and virtuous cause; with the cheering the clergyman, or religious friend, on this hope that, by the blessing of God, their ex- serious question ; and we think it would ertions or those of their successors when not be unedifying to our readers, if some they are laid low, will finally prevail. of our correspondents, who have had large
Sir Henry Halford lately delivered a experience on the subject, would point out lecture at the College of Physicians; at what they consider the true path of Chriswhich were present the Lord Chancellor, tian duty under such difficult and delicate the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Bishop circumstances. Is it “the first duty" of a of London, and numerous other learned, physician, or of any man, to endeavour to scientific, and distinguished persons; on “protract life by all practicable means,” in the influence of diseases of the body upon such a sense that no means are unlawful the mind, and the consequent duty of me- for that end ? We confess that such a dical attendants in some difficult circum- proposition would require great modifistances, particularly as to the propriety of cation before we could think it a safe or informing a patient of his danger when scriptural guide for conduct. near the verge of death. Few persons, he A parliamentary return of the assesssaid, were reluctant to part with life when ments of some of the largest houses in the hour of dissolution approached. Some England gives the following particulars. indeed cling to it with agony, but generally There are in and near London ninetyfor the sake of others, not their own. In three assessed at from 6001. to 9501. per many instances of pain and sickness, life, annum; twelve at 10001.; six at 12001.; he remarked, was protracted longer than, Lord Cavendish's in Piccadilly at 13001.; humanly speaking, was desirable for the the Athenæum at 14001. ; the Mansionsufferer or others : in these cases the House, and United Service Club, at heathens said, that the door was open ; but 15001. ; the East-India House at 25001. ; a Christian felt it his duty to be submis- the Bank, at 25951. ; and the Marquis of sive, and to suffer as well as to do the Stafford's in the Green Park, at 39001. The will of God. With regard to informing house duty on this last assessment is patients of their danger, “ the first duty,” 416. and the others in proportion. There he considered, of a physician,
" was to
is not one bishop's residence in the list, protract life by all practicable means,” and except the Bishop of Durham's, in Hanover in many instances the shock of such an- Square, at 6001. "In the country the highest noimcement would of itself be fatal. He assessments are, Mr. Reilly's at Bath, considered it better to state the matter 10501. ; Mr. Barber's at Bath, 9001. ; Mr. to friends, leaving it to them to break it, Naylor's at Cheltenham, 8501. ; and a few as they saw fit to the patient. When others about the same rate, while Woburn there was no friend, the physician he Abbey is but 6001. ; and the Archbishop of thought ought to perform that solemn Canterbury's at Addington 5301. office. In the case of his late Majesty, he
VIEW OF PUBLIC AFFAIRS. On the first of March Lord John Russell nights in which it was fully discussed in brought forward, with the unanimous all its bearings ; of the many public meetconcurrence of the king and the cabi. ings which have been almost simultaneously net, the government measure for parlia- held, and the numerous petitions presentmentary reform. We can add nothing to ed in favour of it; or the still stronger fcelwhat is known to all our readers of the ing of disapprobation and dismay, less loud opposing sentiments to which it has given in the public ear, but not less deeporserious, rise ; of the hopes and fears which have of those classes, either whose immediate been expressed respecting it; of the extra- interests are affected by it, or who forbode ordinary debate of seven long and arduous in it, on grounds the most conscientious, a commencement of evils, civil, poli- the pending measures ; who, to speak tical, and religious, of which no man plainly, think that the Crown, the Peerage, can calculate the extent or termina- and the Established Church, are at stake, tion. It is in reference to the arguments and that the movement will not stop till of this last class of persons-among whom we are involved in one ruinous scene of are not a few of the clergy, and many of democracy and anarchy. the most respectable and influential mem- It would occupy more columns than bers of the community--men who have no we can devote in the present Number, lo direct interest in or love for venality and embark fully on this serious question ; but “ borough-mongering ;” men who only we are anxious to meet it with the solemn wish for what is really in the end best for consideration which it deserves : and we the public welfare, and the interests of purpose addressing ourselves to it in a religion-chat as Christian Observers we future Number ; when, also, we may be should feel it our duty chiefly to considerable to discuss it with more distinct referthis momentous question. We must ence to the results of the great measure at honestly avow, that we feel no sympathy issue, whether it be adopted, rejected, or for those who have made a trade of political modified. In the mean time, that our corruption; we can witness without a rcaders may not think we wish to shrink sigh the whole system swept away of from our share of responsibility, we are bribery, perjury, nomineeship, seat buying quite ready to avow, that, after much anxand selling, and driving abject servile ious reflection, and it may be with many tenants and dependants to the hustings, difficulties and some prejudices to conquer, like sheep to the slaughter, to give their we have come to the conclusion thai the vote as commanded, on pain of the for- intended reform will prove, on the whole, feiture of their lease or miserable hovel. As salutary ; that, if an evil, it is only a less little can we see of injustice or inexpedi- evil to avoid a greater; and that, instead ency in the general measure of parliament of really weakening whatever is valuable ary reform, which every man now ac- in any of the great interests and instituknowledges was necessary; as the rights tions' before referred to, it will tend to of the election had in lapse of time run strengthen them. We are quite sensible their channels almost dry, so as to flow in
how much we risk with some of our most petty partial rivulets, while the great mass valued friends by this declaration : but, of wealth, population, and intelligence having conscientiously arrived at it, we was left parched and thirsting for a share think it due to truth and justice, to the of the privileges of the constitution. It discharge of our own conscience, and most is notorious also that we had become vir respectful to our readers, to express our tually a sort of oligarchical government; a conviction ; the grounds of which we shall handful of persons connected with bo. be ready to offer in detail in a future roughs having in their hands the keys of the Number. It had long been the convicstate, so as sometimes to open or close them tion of every reflecting mind, that some against King, Lorils, and Commons, as it great change must take place before long best suited their own interests. In the in the national representation; that the onutter extinction of all these things ; and ly safe-guard against a popular revolution, in the termination of such disgraceful and and probable subversion of all that is estaunblushing parliamentary proceedings as blished and venerable among us, was to have from year to year pained and dis- give to the preponderating mass of wealth gusted every Christian mind—as, for ex- and intelligence of the country a larger ample, in the late case of East Retford, share than it now possesses of political and the virtual transfer of its franchise, power; so as to secure those mighty intewhen convicted of gross bribery, to the rests which every judicious and well-dis. Duke of Newcastle, instead of to some po- posed mind is anxious to see strengthpulous and wealthy unrepresented town,
ened. It is a matter of unhappy notoriety, we see nothing that is unjust, inexpedient, that the various classes of society are not or unconstitutional; nothing but what amicably bound together; that a majority every man, who values truth, and fairness, of the nation have cast aside their heredi. and religion, and human happiness, above tary reverence for Parliament ; that the selfishness and party-spirit, must hail and higher ranks of society have been placed in rejoice at.
the most invidious light; that the Peerage, But this is not the point of view in the Prelacy, the Aristocracy, and the Church which the question strikes us as most have been subjected to popular obloquy; important: there are ulterior and pro- and that the bulk of the middle classes, of spective considerations, which to our property and intelligence, who were the naminds are of great moment, and which, tural bulwark between the two extremes we are persuaded, are viewed with great of society, have very widely coalesced anxiety by no small number of those per- with the discontented faction. It is this sons before alluded to; who utterly dis- large and powerful class of persons whom approve of whatever is unjust or immoral the present Bill proposes to admit tu the in the workings of our political system, privileges of the constitution; it being. but who nevertheless entertain serious ap- intended to introduce to the privilege of prehensions as to the ultimate result of voting half a million of householders pos
sessing a stake in the country, and whose not beat the less warmly or patriotically for obvious interest it is to raise, not to lower, the addition. For the present we must the character of the national representation; quit the topic; but it is too important to to guard against, not to encourage, wild and be dismissed with this scanty notice, esperevolutionary measures ; and preserve, not cially in its important hearings upon higher to subvert, the institutions of justice, ino- questions than those of mere civil policy. rality, and religion ; to bind the rich and There are many and great objects to the poor together; to encourage national which a reformed parliament ought to education, the building of churches, and direct its attention: need we specify such 1 he allocation of a faithful active clergyman as national education, for every parish in every village and neighbourhood, by in the kingdom; the building of new whom the Church may be rescued from its churches, and giving the public a pious, present state of unpopularity and spiritual zealous, and fairly remunerated resident inefficiency. This large class of persons parochial clergy; the abolition of pauperhave long viewed with extreme disappro- ism; the restoration of the Lord's-day to bation the venal and interested plans of its lost honours, and the people to its lost parties in parliament; the profligacy of benefits; unrestricted commercial interunmerited pensions and sinecures; the course, for the general benefit, instead prejudiced and selfish opposition to mea: of a miserable system of selfish monosures of undoubted public benefit mea- poly; the reformation of the criminal sures equally just, politic, and humane- law; the obliteration of our absurd and de. such, for instance, as the abolition of our moralizing game code; the abrogation of barbarous feudal game laws, which fill our many evil practices such as duelling, imjails, crowd our hulks, and often lead to pressment, privateering; a better reguthe gibbet; and the extinction of that dis- lation of the colonies, and especially the grace of Great Britain, that curse of the termination of that dreadful system of human race, West-India slavery. We slavery; which disgraces some of them: might mention other things, both in church and a more wise and salutary system of and state, which have given great national international policy. Other important offence; and which, in the present state points occur to us, but we inust defer of the public mind, with a free press, un- these for the present. We have expressed limited licence of popular discussion, the our hopes, that, upon the whole. good will wide publication of the parliainentary pro- accrue from the measure; and that the ceedings, the ominous example of Conti- nation will be better represented, more nental revolutions, and with enough of closely united, and regain that general mob representations and potwallopping to satisfaction with our public institutions send a few Radicals to parliament, and with which has of late years been impeded by far too little of suffrage allowed to the the unequal system of our representation. iniddle classes to counteract the evil, could We discern, indeed, portentous clouds ; not but be pregnant with the most disas- but these are more likely to be dispersed trous consequences.
by a wise and liberal policy, than by a We do not indeed dismiss all our fears : narrow, inequitable, and irritating system. we are not sure that the pressure of society This is the light in which the subject will not bear hard upon much that is strikes us, after mature consideration of the good, as well as upon what is evil: but difficulties on all sides; and we only add one point appears to us quite clear, that our earnest prayers to the Giver of every the proposed measure will repress, rather good and perfect gist, that we may not be than augment, the mischief; and that, mistaken. while abuses are endangered, what is The proposed measure for England and reaily solid and valuable will be more Wules embraces the following particulars : strongly established than it could be - The complete disfranchisement of sixty in the present unsettled and anomalous boroughs, the population of which, accondition of the nation. The largeness of cording to the census of 1821, did not the measure is, to our minds, rather its amount to 2000 souls ;-The extinction of recommendation than otherwise ; for if any the right of sending more than one memchange, any reform, is to be admitted, we ber to forty-seven boroughs, whose popubelieve that it is best and wisest to settle lation at the above date was not 4000 ;the whole matter at once, and with one The extension of the elective franchise, in struggle. Constant party bickerings in towns, to every resident householder payParliament, renewed every session, about ing ten pounds rent, whether proprietor the disfranchisement of this or that cor- or occupier; non-residents to lose their rupt borough, and the claims of this or that franchise ; residents, non-entitled to vote, large town, with all the attendant exhibi- to retain their right during life, though not tions of bribery and profligacy, would have qualified as above. In counties, the fortywearied and disgusted the public, till per. shilling freeholders not to be disturbed; haps some sudden revolution had over- but copyhold property of the value of ten turned the whole fabric. Under the in
pounds per annum, and leasehold of fifty tended system we shall, at least, have the pounds per annum, on twenty-one years infusion of new arterialblood in the stagnant lease, also to confer the right to vote upon veins; which, we would fondly hope, will the occupiers.
The complete or partial disfranchisment sition to this measure being very strong, he of the boroughs dispossesses of seats 168 agreed to let the Canada duty remain as it members. It is proposed to dispose of was, only proposing to reduce the Baltic 106 of these as fullows:
duty. The sole question, therefore, before To London and neighbourhood, ad- the House of Commons was, whether the ditional .
8 duty on Baltic timber should be diminishSeven large towns, two members ed.' The Chancellor of Exchequer said he each
14 could afford to give up part of this heavy Twenty towns, one
20 impost, and thus afford the public a valu. Twenty-seven largest English able article on cheap terms.
counties, two members each, sition was entirely one of grace, and, stand
and one member to Isle of Wight 55 ing upon its own merits, would doubtless Additional members for Scotland 5 have been hailed as a seasonable remission
Ireland 3 of an impolitic and heavy tax. But the
Wales 1 public welfare is a very inadequate counand decrease the members of the house 62. terpoise to private interest and partyThe arrangements for Scotland and Ireland spirit. It was determined to get up an are in a similar spirit, allowing for the dif- opposition to the measure, on the broadferent circumstances of the countries. The bottom plan of combining all who had a polls are to be taken in two days, and no pecuniary interest in opposing it, with voter required to travel beyond fifteen those who merely wished to embarrass miles.
ministers on general grounds, and, above The second reading was carried by 302 all, to defeat the Reform Bill. The shipmembers to 301 ; a small majority in so owners opposed it, because they considered unprecedentedly large a house; but even that if the British public could get good one is many, when it is considered how timber cheaply from the Baltic, they would many of this very house were chosen not pay expensive freights to feich bad under the influence of the late adminis- from America. The West-India party tration, how many sit for the places to be opposed it, and most pertinaciously and disfranchised, and how many have a power- powerfully, though silently, because they ful interest in opposing the measure. saw, that if successful, it foreboded no good
On the Friday previous to the second to the colonial monopolists of slave-grown reading of the Reform Bill, an extraordi- sugar, as the next question would be, why nary specimen of party maneuvreing was perpetuate the horrors of slavery by larger brought to bear against ministers, by which protecting duties against the bloodless they were defeated by a majority of forty- commerce of our own East-Indian possessix. It may be worth while to spend a sions? why tax the British public to an few lines in noticing the singular coalition enormous amount, and deprive the poor so successfully managed on this occasion, of an article of consumption in high reand which would go far of itself to prove quest, just to keep up the flogging of the need of parliamentary reform. It may women, and all the other atrocities which shew the sort of machinery which has been fill West-Indian purses? It was not poused on many other occasions to crush litic to say this aloud ; but it was excel. the public interests, either for party poli. lent generalship to defeat the principle, tical purposes, or for the sordid interests lest, if the public interest came to be conof a commercial monopoly. The facts are sulted in the matter of Memel logs, the briefly these : The north of Europe pro. precedent might extend to the tax-propped duces timber of the most valuable and system of slavery. With these and other durable quality ; Canada, of the worst. interested parties the political opponents To protect the bad article against the good, of ministers determined to unite themwith a view to promote partial interests, the selves, with a view to ulterior objects, Baltic timber had been loaded with one- especially the Reform Bill; and, as if more rous duties, while the American had been completely to shew the character of the admitted with a slight impost; the conse- opposition, and that it was political rather quence of wbich has been, that our build. than public-spirited, the person selected ers have been forced of late years very to head it was Mr. Attwood, the colgenerally to employ the inferior kind: so league of Sir Charles Wetherell in the that, instead of our houses being con. Duke of Newcastle's borough of Bostructed as formerly, to last for centuries, roughbridge, a place which, under the most those erected of late years, unless where moderate system of reform, would be one the proprietors chose to pay the heavy of the first to be disfranchised. The whole, and unwisely-imposed extra tax, have been therefore, of the “ borough interest,” and constructed of the refuse article, and are of the opponents of parliamentary reform, notoriously perishing of dry-rot alınost as without any reference to the real question rapidly as they were built. The evil was at issue, or of the merits of sound and serious, and the public loudly demanded a rotten timber, voted against ministers, remedy. The Chancellor of the Exchequer with a view to impede the reform quesin consequence proposed a scale of duties tion ; some, moreover, with an express which more nearly equalized the tax, but intention of preventing, every measure still favouring the Canadas; but the oppo- grounded upon the principles of political economy, or those principles of “ free first day of the month for eighteen-pence, trade " which forbid that ninety-nine were thus obliged to wait a fortnight and hundredths of the public should purchase pay half-a-crown, for the“ protection ” of bad and dear articles for the sake of the the shipping interest ; would not the proprivate interests of a few monopolists. position be monstrous ? And yet, reduced
It is somewhat out of our way to go to its elements, it is only what we hear deeply into these matters; but we have every day advocated, even by well-meaning thought it not useless to disentangle the men, urged on by those who have selfish above case, with a view to shew its bear- “ interests "in view. We know not how ing upon general principles. Whenever to argue these questions but upon plain the public interest is opposed to private Christian principles. We would deal with emolument, the latter can almost always them upon the broad palpable basis of make a party, and often defeat the best justice. We would retrace what is wrong, measures. We do not apply this remark and return to what is right. If in the detail to the particular case of the timber duties; difficulties arise, let them be fairly and for it may be that Lord Althorpe's pro- liberally met; let mercy be mingled with positions were not well weighed, and we justice; but it is not justice that the public are not competent to give an opinion upon should build with rotten timber, or drink the details of them; but we speak of prin- bad wine, or pay unmerited or profligate ciples, and of that interested play of par- pensions, for the sake of private“interests;” ties which was brought to bear upon but where even what is wrong has been the question, and which it is most de- suffered to grow up, it may require some sirable to see abolished. Let our readers skill and delicacy to pull it down, without remember its workings in the instance of burying ourselves or others in its ruins. the slave trade. What but private interest, We would not spring amine even under the powerfully mining its tortuous way si- West Indies; it is not either right or nelently and under ground, so long impeded cessary to do so ; for means may be found the abolition of that execrable traffic? to abolish slavery without hazard or in. What but a similar cause has hitherto pre. justice. We would also, in all cases of vented the extinction of slavery ? Every public benefit,view with all possible tendersuccessive cabinet has been in thraldom to ness whatever can be urged as a just claim the West-Indian party : there has been a for time and consideration; but party incompact as notorious and stringent as if triguing against sound principle is utterly legally signed and sealed; “ We, the opposed to Christian simplicity, policy, West-India interest, will support minis- and duty, and is to be stunned by every ters on general questions: be their mea- man who seeks the blessing and guidance sures good or bad, they shall have our of God in his actions. vote; we will uphold rotten boroughs, or We recommend the clergy, both in do whatever else they ask of us, if only England and Ireland, to be aware of the they do not disfranchise the cart-whip, or efforts which are likely to be made for astake away our monopoly, or set at liberty sessing the first-fruits of livings at their our captives ; but let them stir one honest actual valuation, instead of the customary step in these matters, and our wealth and lenient modus. To a large majority of influence shall turn the scale against them.” clergymen, the first year of taking posses
It may in general be taken for granted, sion of a benefice is a period of serious that when a loud outcry is made that a expense. Ready money is wanted for dues, measure will ruin such or such an in- fees, moving, ontfitting, repairs, furnishing, terest,” the alarm is wholly selfish; it is charities, and the maintenance and educaa struggle of private cupidity against the tion perhaps of a young family, while public welfare. If there had been an old little or nothing is forthcoming from the law that no magazine or newspaper should glebe and tithes: so that if the incumbent leave London otherwise than by ship, to should not live for some years, he is, perbe conveyed to the port nearest the point of haps, in many instances a loser by exdestination ; and it were at length proposed changing his curacy for a benefice. The that magazines and newspapers should go, operation of the first-fruits, as a fund to as at present, by coach or post, or in raise the average value of livings,is trifling: wbatever way the parties saw fit; what an half a century would elapse before it was outcry would be made that the shipping substantially felt, while a whole first-year's interest” would be ruined! those who income would, to individuals, be an oneraised the outcry keeping out of sight rous tax. The parliamentary returns called how much the public would gain, and how for, of the value of Irish benefices, may little any person would have a right to com- have some ulterior object beyond the proplain that he was not allowed any longer fessed one of assessing the first-fruits; but, an unjust preference which he had enjoyed as respects this professed object, if firsttoo long. Or, reverse the supposition, and fruits are to be valued at their actual worth, imagine, that, in order to benefit “the ship we think it would be but reasonable that ping interest," it were now proposed that they should not be exacted till an incumsuch a regulation as that just mentioned benthadenjoyedabenefice for several years; were to be laid on; and that our readers, and that all livings under three hundred instead of procuring their magazine on the pounds per annum should be exempted,