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him to be a violent and unjust should at a given day give up their meafure, acting upon a class of per- deputations, but they thould not be fons who contributed confiderably called upon unless the militia fhould towards the support of the state. be embodied. He then brought up He concluded with observing, that a clause respecting game-keepers. he hould oppose some parts of the He said it was meant to affect only plan when it came before the house game-keepers who were really and in detail.
a&tually serving as fuch; for that The chancellor of the exchequer gentlemen taking out their licence replied to the arguments made use to sport, should have power to find of by Dr. Sheridan and Mr. Fox. a substitute, to be approved of by He was supported in his proposition the lord lieutenant. The clause by Sir William l'ulteney, Mr. El. proposed by Mr. Rose was then ford, and by Mr. ferjeant Adair; read, and made part of the bill, he was opposed by Mr. Sheridan, which then passed the committee. Mr. Fox, and by Mr. Curwen. On the gift of October, upon a
The first resolution was agreed motion for re-committing the mi10: the second resolution respect. litia bill, a debate of considerable ing the augmentation of the militia length took place, when Mr. Curwas also agreed to, and a bill order. wen opposed it with great strength_ ed to be prepared and brought in of argument and elegance of exfor that purpose. The third reso- prethon. He regarded the measure lution for railing a provisional force then before the house as a scheme of cavalry was also ordered to be to perpetuate that system of deluthrown into the form of a bill and fion which administration had so introduced into the house.
successfully pra&tifed for their own This measure came again before purposes of innovation and opprerthe commons
on the 25th of fion. It seemed strange that such October, when the bill for raising steps should be proposed at the a certain number of men in the moment a negotiation was on foot, several counties of the kingdom for the favourable termination of which the service of the army and navy, he hoped nothing would occur on passed a committee of the whole the part of this country to obstruct. house
, and was ordered to be print. He was convinced that the exered.
tions which the country was then The bill for encreasing the mi- called upon to make, were designed litia, &c. for the defence of the by ministers for other purposes than kingdom, was read a second time, those they had avowed. The state and ordered to be committed to of the continent was certainly not a committee of the whole house fo alarming as it had been at fome immediately. Mr. Rose moved, former periods, and our navy was that it be an instruction to the com- represenied in his majesty's speech mittee that they might have power as having blocked up the enemy's to make provision in the bill for Beets in their own ports for a conenrolling in the militia all persons fiderable part of the year. Upon who were game-keepers. He ob- what then did our fears of invasion ferved also, that it was proposed, rest? that all persons who had deputations The chancellor of the exchequer for keeping game should be enrolled contended, that every member of in case of neceffity, unless they that house must feel a disposition
to act upon that pledge which they bill, several amendments were pro. had so folemnly given on a former posed and adopted. The chancelnight in the address, to neglect no lor of the exchequer, upon this ocmeature to repel the danger to casion, introduced a claufe to exwhich the country was exposed empt persons belonging to the arfrom the threatened invasion. The tillery company and the cinquemembers had been told by those in port corps from the operation of a responsible fituation, that mini- the bill, together with several other Sters knew enough from intelligence affociated corps. to which they gave credit, to ren On the clause proposing that the der it neceflary for them to apprize operation of the bill Mhould contithe country of its danger, and to nue during the war, and three call upon it to exert its means of months after, Mr. Sheridan obdefence.
ferved, that it was probable that Mr. Fox and fir James Pulteney the war might ftill be protracted spoke against the bill. The former long after any alarm of invasion gentleman observed, that there was had ceased. This bill was only inroom to doubt the affertions of tended to secure the country from ministers upon that occasion, be- the dangers of invasion. He therecause there had been no ground for fore proposedl
, that the bil should the original alarm which they had continue only two months in force raised in 1792. The chancellor of after the meeting of the next feflion the exchequer rose again and ob- of parliament. To this Mr. Pitt served, that if the house agreed to replied, that when once the men the measure by adopting the pre- had been trained for twenty days, sent bill, he thought not a moment the hardships with respect to them should be lost, but that this and the ceased; it could therefore be no inother bills should be passed as speed- convenience to retain them on the ily as possible. For this purpose footing propofed by the bills. To he proposed to pass them merely in keep ihem, when once balloted, in the outline, with a clause in each, readiness to be called out in case of empowering the house to amend emergency during the war, might any part or parts of them at any be a source of adjitional strength time during the present feffion. He and confidence to the country. The said a few words at the same time amendment of one month after the on the bill for embodying game- war was adopted. keepers, which had been much Mr. Sheridan proposed an amendmisunderstood. It had been sup ment in the bill, for the purpose of posed that they were to be embo- doing away a distinction in conse. died and called out to be trained quence of a difference of reljgion. as the other parts of the militia in the oath taken by those who were; but the case was otherwise, served in the militia, they were refor, as they were already very ex. quired to fv ear that they were propert at the use of the firelock, there teftants. This was an exclusion of would be no occafion to call them Roman catholics, inconsistent with out riil an invasion should actually the liberality of the age. Wé ought tike place, when they would be to recollect how many of that defound a very useful body of men. scription were in Ireland, whom it
On the ist of November, on the was policy in ministers to concireport of the supplementary militia liate. He then moved an amend
ment in "?t purpose; but he was the country was then very different inform. -- " The fjeaker that it was from what it had been fone months them. ; tesointroduce an amend- before ; that the defeats which the me': ' it that he would have an French had received had deranged
vity on the third reading. every plan of invasion. The real T I jas ordered to be read a mode of securing the country was
:ime the next day, if ergrossed, to render the people contented, hap•rdingly, on the ad of Novem- py and free, instead of barassing It was brought up; and the them with unnecessary burdens. Sir
Hellor of the exchequer moved William Pulteney and fir William ai aufe to allow a provision to be Geary spoke in favour of Mr. Pitt's = d., at the discretion of the ma. niotion; and that of Mr. Fox was
tites, for the families of those negatived without a division. On no served under this bill, for the the 22d of December tilę report of potenty days during which they the amended bill was taken inta **ere called out to be disciplined further consideration by the house, liter fome rifcuffion upon an a
and the different amendients agreed "ndiment proposed by Sir William to. Mr. Wilberforce brought up Young, which was nega ived, that a îmilar clause to that which Mr. - Mr. Pitt was adopted, which, Sheridan had proposed in the origiInge her with one or two more ai- nal bill, namely, that the words “ [ ter. tions, were included in a rider, swear that I am a protestant," should which was annexed to the bill, and be erased from the form of oaths tie b'll, in its amended state, sent to administered to those who should t'e lords for their concurrence.
be balloted to serve in the fuppleAs the bill, however, after it had mentary militia. This clause was s led, was tound not capable of then read and made part of the bill, bu gunderstood, so as to be carried which was read a third time the folinto execution, on the 13th of De- lowing day. cember Mr Pitt gain moved, “That On the rst of Noveinber the lease begiven to explain and amend chancellor of the exchequer rose, the for mentary militia bill.” for the purpose of suggeiting, beMr. Fox faid, that instead of “ex. fore the order of the day for going pinard anrend,” he should move into a committee on the cavalry in have inserted the word " rereal.” bill was read, that it might be conHe conceived the bill to be so ob venient to discuss separately the jectionable, that he had no difficulty two questions that arose on this in faying, that it would be wafting bill, namely, on the railing of the the time of the house to enter into cavalry in general, and on the clause a detail upon the subject. He ap- for embodying the game-keepers pealed to the house, whether, after Though he had by no means relinwhat they had heard of what took quished either of those objects, yet, place in Northamptonthire, and as they might be opposed, and as various other places, they were not they were not in their essence ne. convinced it was a mea'ure which ceffarily connected, it might pollihad excited a general discontent in bly answer the purpose of conve-, the country. °He concluded with nience to divide them. Therefore, moving the repeal, and was second- after the order of the day for the ed by Mr. M. A. Taylor. General recommitment had been read, he Tarleton faid, that che situation of moved, “That it be an instruction
to the committee to divide the con- great conveniences for the collect. fideration of the bill into two sepa. ing and embarkation of troops, erate parts, if they should think pro- fpecially since Holland had become per." The cavalry bill then palled the ally of France; but, instead of through the committee. The clan. pouring troops into this quarter, cellor of the exchequer faid, that it the troops in Holland, formerly having been the sense of the com under Bournonville, had been de: inittee, that that part of the bill re- tached to re-inforce their different lating to game-keepers thould be armies, so that any apprehension of fornecii to a separate bill, he should invasion, from a proper confiderathen move tor leave to bring it in, tion of the circumstances, would be and he t.oped there would be no ob- in a great measure done a way. jection to its being read a first and Mr. Fox urged the same arguTecond tire, and committed the ments against the cavalry bill as he | next day. Leave was given to pre- had done against the supplementary pare and bring in the fame. militia bill. He contended, that
On the 3d of November, when ministers might expend millions afthe report of the cavalry bill was ter millions in preparing against bronght up and the first part of it threats, which were never intended read, general Tarleton said, that he to be executed ; and should the enewas decidedly against the measure. my discover this to be their dispoHe enter d into an historical detail fition, they might complete our ruin of the conduct of our ancestors without much danger or expence upon fiilar occasions, and com to themselves. Mr. Sheridan joined pared their measures with those with Mr. Fox in the same train of which were now intended. He no argument which had been made ticed the preparations which were use of before. They were opposed made when the nation was menaced on the ministerial side by Mr. Ryder in the years 1688, 1715, 1718, 5743, and Mr. Wilberforce, who contend1756, and 1759. He desired the houte ed for the necessity of the mea to look to the situation of the coun- sure, try in 1796. At the present moment The house divided on the ques. there were 100,000 men in arms tion, well affected to their country, and Ayes (for receiving the report) 104 a navy equal to our utmost naval
Noes (against it)
30 ftrength at any period in the annals The report and amendments beof England. He gave his opinion ing agreed to, the bill was ordered respecting the danger of invafion; to be read a third time the next day. there were three points on the coa On the 4th of November Mr. Bidof France from whence a descent dulph proposed a rider to be added night te made; from Dunkirk to to the bill; but his clause was neBreti there was no opportunity of gatived, and one proposed by the collecting troops, and the coast was chancellor of the exchequer was unfavvurable. From Brest to the adopted. The bill was then palied. western coasts, the fituation was The game-keepers' bill, which advantageous for a descent upon at firit was a part of the cavalry Ireland, or an expedi:ion against bill, was brought into the comour poflettions in the West In mons by Mr. Pilt on the ad of No. dies, bet was not calculated for veniber, and went, in substance, :0 an invalion of England. From enable his majeity to require the Dunkirk to the Texel there were personal service of 15,000 men, of
the description therein mentioned. impossible to make a legislative proMr. Sheridan objected wholly to vision to that purpose, but was arthe principle of the bill, as being sured that his majesty's servants one totally unknown to the consti- would grant every poffible indultution of the country, and of the gence. moti dangerous tendency. It was The bill was then read a third ordered to be printed and read a time and passed, and then ordered second time the next day. But on to be carried to the lords by the sethe 2d of December, the chancel- cretary at war. lor of the exchequer said he did not On the 13th of December, the mean to trouble the house further chancellor of the exchequer moved with this bill at present; and it was for leave to bring in a bill to extherefore poftponed for six months. plain and amend the cavalry act;
The army and navy augmenta- leave was given, and the bill tion bill, another branch of the mi- brought in accordingly. nifter's plan, was taken into cona These bills for augmenting the deration by a committee of the internal force of the kingdom were whole house on the 3d of Novem- respectively carried up to the house ber, and was afterwards divided in- of lords, where the discussious upon to two bills. It was proposed in them were neither long nor interestthem, among other things, that the ing. number of men to be raised should On the 2d of November the supbe for the navy 6,000, for the army plementary militia bill was brought 9,000. On the next day, when the from the commons and read a first report was brought up, fome clauses time; and on the 8th of the same were proposed by the lord advocate month it was read a third time and of Scotland. Mr. Frater said, he passed, and a message was sent to wished that some principle of pro- the commons to acquaint them portion should be adopted, that the therewith. On the same day the burden might tall fairly upon the cavalry bill was read a second time, respective counties. The quotas and the bill for raising a certain bore no proportion to the land-tax number of men for the service of ard the population of the counties. the army and navy of England, and Sir John Sinclair had made statisti, the bill for raising men for the like cal accounts of nine-tenths of the service in Scotland, went through parishes of Scotland; and from those a committee of the whole house, it appeared, that the general popu- lord Walfingham in the chair. lation of that kingdom had increased The upper boule made some 300,000.
He wished a clause to amendments in the supplementary be introduced relative to the High militia bill, which were agreed to landers, a brave, bardy, and ser- by the commons on the 29th of viceable race, who were much at- December. tached to their chiefs, and would On the 30th of December the therefore be much burt in being royal assent was given by commifforced to serve under other com- fion to the county quota, provisionmanders; hence he wished a provi- al cavalry, and militia augmentafon might be made for permitting tion explanatory bills. Near the them to serve under their particular end of the feffion a bill was intro. chieftains. The lord advocate of duced for allowing Roman cathoScotland thought it would be almost lies, and protestant diflenters, to