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MR. SHEIL'S SPEECH TO THE PEOPLE.
panied with deep criminality there can be no question : the system, too, which produces them, is as much marked with absurdity as it is deserving of condemnation. In this county, if a man chances to receive a blow, instead of going to a magistrate to swear informations, le lodges a complaint with liis clan, which enters into a compact to avenge the insult - a reaction is produced, and an equally extensive confederacy is formed on the other side. All this results from an indisposition to resort to the law for protection ; for among you it is a point of honor to avoid magistrates, and to reject all the legitimate means provided for your redress. The battle fonglit between the Hickeys and the Hogans, in which not less than five hundred men were engaged, presents in a strong light the consequences of this most strange and preposterous system. Some of the Hickey party were slain in the field, and four of the Hogans were tried for their murder :- they were found guilty of manslaughter — three of them are married and have families, and from their wives and children are condemned to separate for ever. In my mind, these unhappy men bave been doomed to a fate still more disastrous than those who have perished on the scaffold. In the calamity which has befallen Matthew Hogan every man in court felt a sympathy. With the exception of bis having made bimself a party in the cause of his clan, he has always conducted himself with propriety. His landlord felt for him not only an interest, but a strong regard, and exerted himself to the utmost in his behalf. He never took a part in deeds of nocturnal villany. He does not bear the dagger and the torch; honest, industrious, and of a mild and kindly nature, he enjoyed the good will of every man who was acquainted with him. His circumstances in the world were not only comparatively good, but, when taken in reference to his condition in society, were almost opulent; and he rather resembled an English yeoman than an Irish peasant. His appearance at the bar was in a high degree moving and impressive-tall, athletic, and even noble in his stature, with a face finely formed, and wholly free from any ferocity of expression, he attracted every eye, and excited, even among his prosecutors, a feeling of commiseration. He formed a remarkable contrast with the ordinary class of culprits who are arraigned in our public tribunals. So far from having guilt and depravity stamped with want upon him, the prevailing character of his countenance was indication of gentleness and humanity. This man was convicted of manslaughter; and when he heard tlic sentence of transportation for life, all color fied from his cheek, lis lips became dry and ashy, his band shook, and his eyes were the more painful to look at from their being incapable of tears. Most of you consider transportation a light evil, and so it is, to those who have no ties to fasten them to their country. I can well imagine that a deportation from this island, which, for most of its inhabitants is a miserable one, is to many a change greatly for the better. Although it is to a certain extent, painful to be torn from the place with which our first recollections are associated, and the Irish people have strong local attachments, and are fond of the place of their birth, and of their fathers' graves — yet the fine sky, the genial climate, and the deep and abundant soil of New Holland, afford many compensations. But there can be none for Matthew IIogan :—He is in the prime of life, was a prosperous farmer :- he has a young and amiable wife, who has borne him children ; but, alas !
“« Nor wife, nor children, more shall he behold,
Nor friends, nor sacred home.' He must leave his country for ever— he must part from all that he loves, and from all by whom he is beloved, and his heart will burst in the separation. On Monday next he will see his family for the last time. What a victim do you behold, in that unfortunate man, of the spirit of turbulence which rages among you! Matthew Hogan will feel his misfortune with more deep intensity, because lie is natnrally a sensitive and susceptible man. He was proved to have saved the life of one of bis antagonists in the very hottest fury of the combat, from motives of generous commiseration. One of his own kindred, in speaking to me of his fate, said, ' he would feel it the more, because' (to use the poor man's vernacular pronunciation). he way so tinder.' This unhappy sensibility will produce a more painful laceration of the heart than others would experience,
MR. SHEIL'S SPEECH. when he bids his infants and their mother farewell for ever. The prison of this town will present on Monday next a very afflicting spectacle. Before he ascends the vehicle which is to convey him for transportation, to Cork, lie will be allowed to take leave of his family. His wife will cling with a breaking lieart to his bosom; and while her arms are folded round his neck, while she sobs in the agony of a virtuous anguish on his breast, his children, who used to climb liis kuces in playful emulation for his caresses, bis little orphans, for they are doomed to orphanage in their father's lifetime. I will not go on with this distressing picture : your own emotions (for there are many fathers and husbands liere) will complete it. But the sufferings of poor Hogan will not end at the threshold of his prison :- He will be conveyed in a vessel, freiglated with affliction, across the ocean, and will be set on the lonely and distant land, from which he will return no more. Others, who will bave accompanied hin, will soon forget their country, and derote themselves to those useful and active pursuits for which the colony affords a field, and which will render them happier, by making them better men. But the thoughts of home will still press upon the mind of Matthew Hogan, and adhere with a deadly tenacity to his heart. He will mope about, in the vacant heedlessness of deep and settled sorrow; he will have no incentive to exertion, for be will have bidden farewell to hope. The instruments of labor will bang idly in his hands; he will go through his task without a consciousness of what he is doing : or if he thinks at all while he turns up the earth, he will think of the little garden beside his native cottage, which it was more a delight than a toil to till. Thus his day will go by, and at its close his only consolation will be to stand on the seashore, and fixing his eyes in that direction in which he will have been taught that his country lies - if not in the language, he will at least exclaim in tlie sentiments which have been so simply and so pathetically expressed in the Song of Exile :
“. Erin, my country! though sad and forsuken,
In dreams I revisit thy sea-beaten shore ;
And sigh for the friends that can meet me no more.'”
CONFESSIONS OF A JUNIOR BARRISTER.*
My father was agent to an extensive absentee property in the south of Ireland. He was a Protestant, and respectably comected. It was even understood in the country that a kind of Irish relationship existed between him and the distant proprietor whose rents lie collected. Of this, however, I have some doubts; for, generally speaking, our aristocracy are extremely averse to trusting their money in the hands of a poor relation. Besides this, I was more than once invited to dine with a leading member of the family when I was at the Temple, which would liardly have been the case, had he suispected on my part any dormant claim of kindred. Being an eldest son, I was destined from my birth for the Bar. This, about thirty years ago, was almost a matter of course with our secondary gentry. Among such persons it was, at that time, an object of great ambition to have “ a young counsellor" in the family. In itself it was a respectable thing-for, who could tell what the "young counsellor" might not one day be? Then it kept off vexatious claims, and produced a general THE DREAMS OF TOUTH.
* This amusing sketch, of which it may be said, “ Se non è vero, è ben trou valo," was prefaced with the following notice:-“ MR. EDITOR: The author of the Irish Bar Sketches seems of late to have suspended his labors: and should be resume them, I question whether it forms any part of his plan to take up the subject upon which I now propose to trouble the public. I trusı, there fore, that he will not consider it an act of undue interference with his exclusive rights, if, pending his present silence, I solicit the attention of your readers to tie fullowing sketch of myself. It may be vanity on my part, but it does strike my humble judgment that the details I am about to submit, and I shall be can. did even against mys If, have an interest of their own, which will excuse their pudication."'- The suspension spoken of here was imaginary, as one of the Sketches had appeared in Jay, and this was published in July, 1825.- M.
interested civility in the neighborhood, under the expectation that, whenever any little point of law might arise, the young counsellor's opinion might be had for nothing. Times have somewhat changed in this respect. Yet, to this day, the young counsellor who passes the law-vacations among his country friends finds (at least I have found it so) that the old feeling of reverence for the name is not yet extinct, and that his dicta upon the law of trespass and distress for rent are generally deferred to in his own county, unless when it liappens to be the assizes’-time. . '
I passed through my school and college studies with great éclat. At the latter place, particularly toward the close of the course, I dedicated myself to all sorts of composition. I was also a constant speaker in the Historical Society, where I discovered, with no slight satisfaction, that popular eloquence was decidedly my forte. In the cultivation of this noble art, I adhered to no settled plan. Sometimes, in imitation of the ancients, I composed my address with great care, and delivered it from memory : at others, I trusted for words (for I am naturally fluent) to the occasion; but, wlietlier my speech was extemporaneous or prepared, I always spoke on the side of freedom. At this period, and for the two or three years that followed, my mind was filled with almost inconceivable enthu. siasm for my future profession. I was about to enter it (I can call my own conscience to witness) from no sordid motives. As to money matters, I was independent; for my father, who was now no more, had left me a profit-rent of three hundred pounds a-year.
No; but I had formed to my youthful fancy an idea of the honors and duties of an advocate's career, founded upon the purest models of ancient and modern times. I pictured to myself the glorious occasions it would present of redressing private wrongs, of exposing and confounding the artful machinations of injustice; and should the political condition of my country require it, as in all probability it would, of emulating the illustrious men whose eloquence and courage had so often shielded the intended victim against the unconstitutional aggressions of the state. It was with these views, and not from