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great occafion. During the last feffion the catholics of Ireland applied to the legislature for a redress of their grievances, which proved ineffectual; their rightful claims were refifted, but the justice of them remained in full force, and feemed rather to acquire new rigour.

It was faid that the applications for relief did not come from the great body of the Catholics, but from a few inconfiderable perfons; a just cause never fails to fuggeft the means of attaining its true level, the gentlemen who conducted the Catholic bufiness, set about removing the objection; and as the first ftep towards it, agreed upon the following plan, as the most likely means of obtaining the general fense, and which we now annex, as it will be found frequently alluded to in the following sheets.


Circular letter addreffed to the Catholic gentlemen of the kingdom of Ireland, with a plan for electing delegates.


"This letter with the plan which accompanies it, is tranfmitted to you, by order of the Subcommittee. You will perceive that the object of this plan is to procure a fuller attendance of country gentlemen, to affift, by their advice and influence, the measures adopted by the Committee to procure for the Catholics the Elective Franchife, and an equal participation of the benefits of the Trial by Jury. You will please to lose no time in fubmitting this to the refpectable Catholics of your county.You will please alfo to inform them, that feveral refpectable independent country gentlemen, lately in Dublin, had frequent confultations, for the laudable purpose of re-uniting to the Committee Lord Fingal, and the other gentlemen who had withdrawn themselves from it. Thefe country gentlemen had the fatisfaction to find, that the general committee on one fide, and the gentlemen who had entered into separate addreffes on the other, mutually regretted their divifion; which they faw was used by


the opponents of the Catholics, as a pretext for withholding from our people the Elective Franchife, and an equal participation of the benefits of the Trial by Jury. It is on all fides agreed, that if the Catholics are all united in this juft and reasonable requeft, effential to the very existence of our people, there will be a certainty of fuccefs: it depends then on ourselves whether we fhall be-Freemen or Slaves! We fay, effential to the very existence of our people: for, as the rage for electioneering intereft increafes, our wealthy farmers muít either pay beyond the value for lands, or refign them to Proteftant freeholders when out of leafe; our poorer yeomanry will of courfe be expelled, and driven into beggary. Let us all then, fpeak with one voice, and fupplicate the legislature for justice and we shall receive


"These independent country gentlemen have received from Lord Fingal, and the gentlemen who have acted with him, the moft pofitive declarations, that they will never again enter into any act to oppofe the General Committee in their endeavours to obtain the emancipation of the Catholics; and it is determined that all former differences in opinion fhall be buried in oblivion on both fides.

"The committee had decided to fend fome of their body, to propofe to the counties to appoint Delegates to the Committee, of whofe attendance there would be a certainty; and our Chairman had actually left Dublin, with intention to go through a great part of Ireland for this purpofe; the independent country gentlemen, as before mentioned,


took up the fame idea themselves, (before they knew the Committee had determined upon it) and they, and Lord Fingal and his friends, all agreed in preffing such a measure on the Committee, as an additional caufe of re-uniting them to the body.

"Lord Fingal, his friends, and the country gentlemen before mentioned, feemed at firft inclined that the prefent Committee fhould be diffolved; an opinion, however, which further reflection on the various difficulties refulting from such a measure, the doubts entertained of the competency in the Committee to diffolve itfelf, and the confideration that a diffolution muft neceffarily occur early in 1793, induced them to forego.

"The plan inclofed, fanctioned by the General Committee, by these independent gentlemen, and by Lord Fingal, and his friends, is recommended to your zeal to have carried into immediate execution in your county.

"I am, Sir,

"Your most humble fervant,


Delegates were accordingly elected, and having repaired to Dublin, affembled at the Taylor's-Hall, on the 3d of December, 1792; where after fome days spent in difcuffing the objects of their important miffion, among other measures adopted, was a petition to the throne, which the following members were appointed to carry to the king; Mr. Edward Byrne, Mr. John Keogh, Mr. James Edward Devereux, Mr. Christopher Bellew, and Sir Thomas French, Bart. The Petition was in thefe words:




The humble petition of the undersigned Catholics, on behalf of themselves and the rest of the Catholic fubjects of the kingdom of Ireland.

Moft gracious Sovereign,

We, your Majefty's moft dutiful and loyal fubjects of your kingdom of Ireland, profeffing the Catholic religion, prefume to approach your Majefty, who are the common father of all your people, and humbly to fubmit to your confideration the manifold incapacities and oppreffive difqualifications under which we labour.

For, may it please your majefty, after a century of uninterrupted loyalty, in which time five foreign wars, and two domeftic rebellions have occurred, after having taken every oath of allegiance and fide lity to your Majefty, and given, and being still ready to give, every pledge which can be devised for their peaceable demeanour and unconditional fubmiffion to the laws, the Catholics of Ireland stand obnoxious to a long catalogue of ftatutes, inflicting on dutiful and meritorious fubjects pains and penalties of an extent and feverity which fcarce any degree of delinquency can warrant, and prolonged to a period when no neceffity can be alleged to juftify their continuance.

In the first place, we beg leave with all humility to represent to your Majefty, that notwithftanding the loweft departments in your Majefty's fleets and armies, are largely fupplied by our numbers, and your revenue in this country to a great degree fupported by our contributions, we are difabled froin ferving your Majefty in any

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