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the muscle of the abdomen. He was conveyed those inequalities which had grown into bitter to his tent, and though he had lost much wrongs, and had justified political combinablood and suffered from the shock, he felt well tions and confederations, which, if they are enough to send out a message to the persons as- made in secret, too often grow into conspisembled, saying that he was not much hurt, and racies, under the name of which offences are should be better presently. Farrell, who barely committed for which there is no excuse, and escaped being lynched, was much mauled and crimes are perpetrated for which there can be buffeted. After his apprehension it was re- nothing but stern condemnation. ported that he was the agent of a Fenian con- Speaking in Lancashire of the condition of spiracy, and this suspicion was to a considerable the country with regard to Irish affairs and extent supported by the statement of the pri- the evil that had been wrought by Fenian soner himself, who said that he had written an outrages, Mr. Gladstone averred that he enaddress to the people of Ireland, and had sent tertained a deep conviction that the name of it to the printers of two Irish publications, Ireland and all that belonged to that name implying that he was one of an organization. would probably find for government, for parHe declared, however, that there was no truth liament, and for the people the most difficult in this, and that no one but himself was con- and anxious portion of their political employcerned in the attempt, for which he seemed ment for years to come. In referring to what to be penitent.
they had seen during the last few weeks he The prince soon began to recover from his intended to speak as plainly as he could upon wound, but was advised to leave the colony, the subject of what was known by the dethe relaxing climate of which at that season signation of Fenianism. In the present state was unfavourable. Before he left he called on of the public mind, after occurrences so wicked the governor to intercede for the man who and detestable, he wished to urge upon the had endeavoured to shoot him; but Farrell public and upon himself these two fundawas afterwards tried and executed, the gov- mental cautions—first, that in considering ernor probably thinking that if he went un- those outrages they should endeavour to prepunished there would be some serious disturb- serve an equal temper and perfect self-comance.
mand; the second was that they should not If any proof had been needed that the mem- confound the cause of Fenianism with the bers of the royal family did not distrust the Irish cause of Ireland. ... It was a great adpeople, but believed in their loyalty and hon- vance in modern civilization which had led to our in spite of the evil counsels of Fenian con- the lenient treatment of political offenders-spirators and their wretched followers, it would an advance of which they had an illustrious have been found in the fact that the Prince example in the proceedings that had followed and Princess of Wales went on a visit to Ire- the conclusion of the dreadful and desperate land on the 15th of April, landed at Kingston, war in America. Leniency to political offenand proceeded by road in an open carriage to ders he believed to be alike wise and just; but Dublin, where they were received with en- he altogether denied-and he was speaking thusiasm. They afterwards visited Punches- now not of persons but of acts—that acts such town Races, and on the 18th the prince was as they had lately seen were entitled to the inaugurated a Knight of St. Patrick. One partial immunities and leniency that ought to object of the visit of the prince was to unveil be granted to offences properly political. He the statue of Burke, and during their stay knew not whom it might please or whom it they made a round of visits and joined in might offend; but his conviction was that there a series of entertainments without displaying was a deep moral taint and degradation in the apprehension, and with a just reliance on the thing which was called Fenianism. He argood faith and good-will of the population. rived at that conclusion when the Fenian inBut the difficulty was still there, the difficulty vasion of Canada took place. Canada was of removing from the government of Ireland notoriously and perfectly guiltless in respect
THE REALITY OF IRISH GRIEVANCES.
to Ireland; and he said that to carry fire and the past. Civil rights had been extended; sword within her borders merely because it odious penalties had been removed; religious was dreamed or supposed that through Canada distinctions that formerly existed had been some disgrace or wound might be inflicted effaced, and a better and a milder spirit had upon England, was the very height and depth recently taken possession of British legislation of human wickedness and baseness. He was with regard to Ireland. At the same time, if not surprised at what had taken place in Man- we wished to place ourselves in a condition to chester. He could not for a moment admit grapple with the Irish problem as it ought to that offences of that kind ought to be treated be grappled with, there was but one way to with great leniency and tenderness. They do it-to suppose ourselves in the position of were told that the men who went to stop the Irishmen, and then say honestly whether we police van with revolvers did not mean any would be satisfied with the state of things that harm, and that it was an accident that led to now existed. bloodshed. The allegation had been used, and Nearly thirty years had elapsed since (in with no small effect in Ireland, that the attempt | 1838) the great grievance of the tithe system and the intention was not to kill Brett, but to in Ireland had been mitigated by the converblow open
the door of the van. The evidence sion of tithe into a rent-charge payable by the was that the pistol was fired through the ven- landlord. It was thirty-five years since the tilator; and, undoubtedly, he who wished to church"cess” (which in England was called blow
open a door did not fire his pistol through church-rate) had been totally abolished; but a part that was already open. But further, it one of the most conspicuous complaints of the was treated as a sort of accident, forsooth, that Irish people was that a Protestant church had the police, instead of calmly submitting to the been established and imposed upon them, and demand of the party who intercepted them, was maintained even in districts where, exshould have offered such resistance as they cept the clergyman, his family, and his officers, were able; and that Brett, with the spirit of all the inhabitants were Roman Catholics. a man and an Englishman, should have refused After three hundred years of trial since the to do anything great or small in furtherance establishment of the Protestant church in of the objects of the breakers of the law. The Ireland not above one-seventh or one-eighth anticipation and the belief upon which that of the people of Ireland were Protestants of plea of excuse was founded was, forsooth, that the Established Church. It is not to be wonthe policeman had no sense of duty, no prin- dered at that this grievance rankled, nor that ciple, and no courage, and that, therefore, being the adoption of a plan of general education in an animal without either honour or conscience, Ireland should have been less successful behis business the moment danger appeared was cause of the opposing claims of the clergy. In to run away; and that a confident reckoning Ulster the proportion of Roman Catholic and might be made that he would run away; and Protestant children in the National Schools that if he did not, but acted under a sense of were about in proportion to the number of duty, and died in consequence, his death was each denomination in the population; but the to be regarded as an accident.
same proportion does not seem to have been It was, to say the least, a matter of sadness maintained in the southern portion of the that, after six hundred years of political connec- island. Not only was the Irish Church a source tion with Ireland, that union of heart and spirit of perpetual discontent, but the injustice of the which was absolutely necessary for the wel- laws under which land was held by tenants fare of that country had not yet been brought in the southern portion of Ireland were such about. It was impossible to exaggerate that as to arouse the bitter feeling of the populafact or the gravity of the responsibility which tion. Nearly a century before, Grattan had it brought to the government of this country. spoken of Ireland as
spoken of Ireland as "a people ill governed, There was no doubt that, even as matters and a government ill obeyed,” and in his stood, there was a great improvement upon speeches in the Irish parliament, had described
the hardships suffered by cottagers who were inquired into in 1836, but not disestablished
have made in their holdings, and to enjoy a
The Catholic Relief Act of 1829, the aboli- Realities of Irish Life will remember the tion of cess and tithes, the extension of the pictures they give of the atrocities perpetrated poor-laws to Ireland in 1838, and acts for the forty-five years ago.
The Fenian outrages sale of encumbered estates, which put an end differed but little from some of those, and to a large amount of pauperism and misery, later examples of crimes committed apparently were all efforts to promote the equality and with the complacent indifference, if not under to remedy the wrongs of Ireland. The Church the actual direction, of associations with new of Ireland had been freed from many abuses; titles, are equally, if not more abominable. a system of national education had been ex- Still we should not lose sight of the fact, tended and improved ; and on more than one that while in one part of the kingdom the occasion the position of the Irish Church had tenants held their land on equitable terms, been threatened. It was discussed in 1835, and could claim something like adequately
THE IRISH LAND QUESTION.
adjusted reward for improvements, in the ized by men of another race.
The experiother there was neither inducement to labour ment was not made, and the inequality was nor reward for the results of knowledge and therefore indefensible. Neither industry nor experience.
thrift could well be expected of people to It may have been the case that the tenant whom the inducements to improve their posirights granted in Ulster, and known as the tion had been denied. The increased cultivaUlster right or custom, could not be entirely tion of their land, they too often had reason to applicable to neglected and unprofitable lands believe, would be followed by the raising of in other places. One reason for its not being their rents — the improvements that they so applicable was, that the tenants were too could contrive to make in it might be liable impoverished to make improvements which to confiscation by the landowner in favour of needed agricultural implements, proper fences, another tenant who would offer higher terms and the ordinary appliances of farm-work. for occupation. That was the condition of the To raise the wretched crops from their ne- peasant landholder; and it was no answer to glected unfenced patches, they only scratched the complaints against it that a number of the surface of the ground, or at the best kept the proprietors of the soil acted with reasonpart of it in cultivation by spade and hoe. able fairness, and neither exacted exorbitant What hope could there be for an agricultural rentals nor permitted the unjust eviction of country where the people who had to live on their tenants. There was no law giving the land, and by what it produced, held their actual security of tenure. The alleged rights plots or farnis at the pleasure of the landlords of property in the soil have many a time stood or their agent? The Ulster “custom,” which in the way of just legislation in England as had the effect of law, recognized the claim of well as in Ireland, and have frustrated the the tenant to undisturbed possession as long attempts of honest and earnest statesmen to as he paid his rent, and if he gave up his hold- deliver the holder and cultivator of the land ing entitled him compensation for unex- from the position of a tenant on sufferance. hausted improvements. It also enabled him The land holder in Ireland was in fact living to sell the good - will of his farm to anyone under something of a feudal law, as the tenure whom the landlord was willing to accept as a was much the same as that granted by the tenant. In fact he possessed to a great extent
conqueror to the
tiller of the ground. the privileges of a farmer holding his land on Hundreds of years before, conquest had given a long lease.
a kind of title to restrict the tenure to a mere In Ulster there was comparative prosperity, privilege, and there had been no law passed to for the holder of land profited by his own alter that state of things. At a remote period industry. His improvements had a market there had been open war; the victors had taken value, even after he brad reaped some of the possession of the land; the vanquished could benefit from them. In the south, and wher- therefore only be tenants at will. Generations ever the tenants were little more than tenants had passed —land had changed hands by purat will, the condition of the people was chase or otherwise--tenants had comeand gone. wretched, and their fields were neglected. All was altered but the feudal tenure. GovernIn such a condition it was not very surprising ment had failed to secure the holders of land that they became the prey of political agitators, against the assertion of an obsolete authority. or that they were ready to defy the law, which Some of the holders listened to the evil counsel they believed, from bitter experience, was cal- that a remedy might be found in a conspiracy culated rather to suppress than to protect or to defy the government, to refuse both rent encourage them. It is not necessary to con- and possession of the land, and to assassinate tend that the Ulster custom would not have landlords who took steps to recover either. worked to equal advantage among a people different in character and temperament to In 1866 Mr. Gladstone and Earl Russell those of a province colonized or chiefly colon- were together in Italy, and there they dis
cussed the question of the Established Church called a liberal measure of Irish local selfin Ireland. “I found that he was as little government. Mr. Maguire was liked and disposed as I was to maintain Protestant trusted by extreme agitators, who could not ascendency in Ireland," wrote the earl in his question his earnest love for his country, and Recollections, “and from that time I judged also by cautious politicians, who admired the that this great question would be safer in his consistency and moderation of opinions, which hands than in mine."
were often, however, delivered in language of This and some subsequent remarks seem to no little force, and with considerable veheshow that it was to bring forward a measure mence of expression. on the disestablishment and disendowment of Mr. Maguire's proposals were, that the the Irish Church that Mr. Gladstone took the house should resolve itself into a committee place of the earl as leader of the House of to take into immediate consideration the conCommons.
dition of Ireland, and the debate that ensued On the retirement of Lord Derby Mr. Dis- showed that the government was not prepared raeli had been commanded to form a new to indicate any distinct policy on the subject. administration. The only changes that were It was evident that the question of the Irish made, however, were the appointment of Church must be brought forward, and the Lord Cairns as lord-chancellor in place of ministry was not prepared to yield to the Lord Chelmsford, and that of Mr. Ward demands that would be made. Hunt to the chancellorship of the exchequer, Lord Mayo, the secretary for Ireland, spoke Mr. Disraeli, of course, becoming first lord of of the wisdom of “levelling up” instead of the treasury.
levelling down, and appeared to suggest that It was felt that the affairs of Ireland de- religious equality should be secured by supmanded immediate attention, but it soon ap- porting the various denominations, but it was peared to be equally evident that the ministry not represented that he uttered the opinions had no definite propositions to make. It was of the government, and the resolutions of Mr. not till the end of February, 1868, that the Maguire were opposed during a debate which new ministry was formed, and when in March lasted for three nights. Mr. Gladstone in the the house had settled to business the subject course of the discussion had, in referring to was brought forward by Mr. John Francis the Irish Church, mentioned the word disMaguire, who was eminently capable of giving establishment, and the applause with which forcible expression to the serious claims of his the expression had been received was significountrymen. Mr. Maguire was a man of con- cant,--so significant that Mr. Disraeli, who siderable ability, and though he was also followed him, declared his determination to known to be so opposed to all acts of lawless resist with all his power any attempts that violence that he had on more than one occa- might be made to overthrow the Established sion shown himself ready to forfeit his position Church in Ireland, and in his argument mainrather than give any support to rebellious tained the inseparable alliance between church demonstrations, he had shown by unmistakable and state. evidences that he was none the less true to the On the fourth night a decisive blow was interests of his countrymen, because he well struck. Mr. Gladstone unhesitatingly declared understood the differences between English and his opinion that the Established Church in Irish characteristics and temperament. He Ireland must cease to exist as an institution had avoided, even if he had not actually re- upheld by the state. Religious equality must fused, overtures which would have led to be established, difficult as it might be, but some remunerative office at a time when his not on the principle of levelling up.
His pecuniary circumstances were narrow and object also was to promote the loyalty and discouraging. He had distinctly avowed that union of the Irish people, but it was idle and there could be no separation of England and mocking to use words unless they could be susIreland, but had advocated what may be tained by the unreserved devotion of definite