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loved by all for his affability. However, give me
leave now, to repeat
the very
words ftated in that

"We exult to live in a country, where the voice of the people, once plainly and decidedly uttered, is a thunder which no government dares refift, and before which all corruption must difperfe; the tumult of intemperance may be derided and fubdued by the feebleft minifters, but it is not within the limits of minifterial daring to refift the firm demands of the people."

Is this language, fir, to be ufed to the council of the nation? Is it to be intimidated? Is it to be forced to comply with measures that may be thought to endanger the conftitution? Such language, fure, can but be conftrued as a declaration of domeftic war, and as the forerunner of violent diforder. Would it not have been time enough for fuch a fociety to have fhewn their difapprobation, when their requests had been refufed? Is this like the language which an hon. and learned member, ftated to the houfe at the clofe of the laft feffion, that three millions of people came in an humble and moft humiliating manner, to afk relief for their grievances, and that the decifion of this house, be it what it would, fhould be received by the Catholics moft thankfully and gratefully? Now, fir, I fhall only beg leave to add, that I do not think that there is a man on this fide of the house, nor on the other, but from that declaration, has reason to be alarmed, and that in the moft ferious manner. Sir, if this house is to be treated with fuch indignity, in my humble opinion, there must be an end to parlia

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Mr. Grattan after fome other obfervations, faid, permit me to confider the conduct of our minifters, in its particular reference to that oppreffed part of his majefty's fubjects, the Catholics. I do not mean now to go into their claims, I retain my former conviction in their favour; but if I were their enemy, I could not approve of their treatment. Our ministry begins by offering them a perfonal incivility, fo they ftate in their published debate. I am not a judge of the fact, but they are of the impreffion. They were fo critically and equivocally fituated with refpect to political and civil rank, that even courtefy from a lord lieutenant's fec. would have been a compliment, and flight is an infult. They are the only part of his majefty's fubjects fo fituated; the Catholics will be foon in that fituation no longer; after offending the Catholics by manner, the next unadvised step of our miniftry was to attack them by artifice, and accordingly they endeavoured to detach and divide the landed intereft of the Catholics from the body at large, which was an attempt to deftroy the fubordination of the common people, and to fet population adrift from the influence of property; and leaft there fhould remain ftill fome influence over their minds, the ministry make fome blind and imperfect overtures to the Catholic clergy, to detach them alfo from the claims of their flock, which was to detach their flocks from them, and to leave that flock entirely deftitute of all principle whatever, of fubordina tion either to landlord or ecclefiaftic. I am not a friend to fuperftition or fubjugation, and yet there is a certain degree of moral influence which the paftor may fafely have over his flock, and the landlord over his tenantry, without which I fear


you would extinguifh the foul of fubordination; however, the minifter endeavours to leave the Catholic, over whom the ftate cannot have by connection any afcendancy, free from any controul or check, either of their church or their own ariftocracy; and it is a strong presumption in favour of that body, thus fet a drift as it were by the defign, that it recovered the principles of union, and has preferved the principles of fubordination, and fhould have left its enemies without even a pretence to opprefs them. The next impolitic step taken by our minifter was the inftitution of a paper war on the fubject of religion, - the declarations as you will find in the Catholic report of the tranfaction, managed, procured, or fanctioned by government, led to counter declaration, and finally, difcuffion at large, on the broad principle of philofophy; which miniftry knew was against them; and in an appeal to the people, who, from interest must have been against them likewife, the miniftry embitter this paper war, by its own rhetoricians and fcribblers, and publish notoriously from the Caftle fuch perfonal invectives against refpectable Catholics, fuch contumelious stuff, you must recollect as written, published, and fpread by the Castle against the pretenfions and perfons of the Catholic body; fuch invectives as muft have roused the spirit of indignation as well as liberty, to vindicate their fame and fortunes against a fcandalous and opprobrious government.

The next unfortunate error in this bufinefs was a declaration from a right hon. gentleman high in confidence, that on a certain event government would fupprefs the Catholics with the force of both


countries. I incline to believe the threat was unauthorised; nor do I pretend to fay it was unconditional; it was on a certain event, or fuppofition, that these men committed fomething which government might call a great offence; but who had a right to fuppofe fuch a body of men will commit an act which will juftify his majefty's minifters to levy war on fo vaft a portion of his people a liege fubject, living within the peace of the king, to fuppofe him a rebel, in order to threaten him with arms, is to tell him he is not a fubject but a flave. Without difcuffing any further objections to fuch language, it is fufficient to fay that the direct and obvious tendency of fuch a menace, was to make the Catholic body attribute to the fucceffes of France that fafety and privilege which fhould have appeared to proceed from the benignity of the king, and the juftice of parliament. I fay the tendency of fuch a declaration; but the effect of it has been, I believe, only to manifeft his majefty's gracious and fignal interpofition, from his paternal love, for his loyal fubjects to afford them protection against his minifter.

The next unfortunate error of our miniftry was their interference with grand juries against the Catholics, becaufe they were giving to the Proteftant falfe hopes, at the fame time that they were exciting against the Catholics falfe fears. They took the lead in fomenting a religious war, they began it, they acted in the mongrel capacity of country gentlemen and minifters, they acted againft the Catholics as country gentlemen, and encouraged the Proteftants as minifters. They had, I understand, informed the British ministry, that the influence of the crown could not induce a


majority to vote against Catholic pretenfions, and then they themselves take a leading part to make that difficulty in the country, of which they complain in their dispatches. To the country gentlemen they fay, will you bear that these men fhall get the elective franchife, and to the British minifter, you fee thefe country gentlemen; and the confequences of this conduct is, that the Irish ministry becomes parties againft the people, and have a perfonal and country intereft to exclude them; not as Catholics, but as enemies.

Among other inftances of the intolerance of minifters, was, fomething of a religious war in an address from the corporation of Dublin to the other corporations of the kingdom. I confider this publication as the act of the Caftle, the act of their city delegation, the compofition of their city agents. The city has been a long time the object of their mischief: whenever the city is left to herfelf, she will ever speak with moderation and propriety; and her mistake in this address has been to have refigned her better understanding to the intrigues and interference of the Caftle. I fhall obferve on this publication fo far as to fay, that, according to the fentence it pronounces, that the doom of the Catholic, in all times to come, is perpetual exclufion from the franchise of the conftitution; and, according to the law that publication advances, the title of the Proteftant to his lands and privileges is the right of conqueft. If then the three millions of Catholics fhould, with the affistance of twenty-fix millions in France, rebel and difpoffefs you of your properties and. charters, they have in the city publication an authority, they have the law of conqueft, and they


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