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LORD MONK, IN CHARACTER.
Lord ship's name appeared among the dramatis persona in the following felicitous announcement: “Doodle, a foolish lord, Lord Monk.” The noble Earl is represented in that felicitous moment when he gave as a toast, “ The Pope in the pillory," with certain additional aspirations, which it is not necessary to record. The whole assembly of sympathizing compotators stand with uplifted glasses, replenished to the brim. The Irish Chancellor is seen at the right hand of the noble and intellectual chairman, in the usual “hip, hip, huzza" attitude. A ring, given him by the King during his visit in Ireland, sparkles on his finger, and he tramples the King's parting letter* under his feet.
* In this missive, written by Lord Sidmouth, as Home Secretary, in the name of George IV., it was strongly recommended that party squabbles should cease and liberality of thought and action be exercised in future.- M.
THE CATHOLIC DEPUTATION.
The Roman Catholic Association having resolved to petition the House of Commons against the Bill which was in progress for their suppression (in 1825), requested Mr. O'Connell and Mr. Sheil to attend at the bar of the house, and prayed that those gentlemen should be heard as counsel on behalf of the body in whose proceedings they had taken so active a participation.* They appeared to undertake the office with reluc
* It may be necessary to preface this sketch with a rapid view of the position and prospects of the Catholic question at this time. In 1823, the Catholic Association was formed, and was in active operation during 1824. One result was that it literally put down the spirit of insurrection which had crowded the prison with inmates, and the gallows and the hulks with victims. It raised large sums, by means of small but numerous contributions to a fund called “ The Catholic Rent." The Government, angry and jealous that the Association had restored that comparative tranquillity in Ireland which its own harsh rule had been unable to do, resolved that "it must be put down:" – and more particularly, as the general proceedings of this body were made very closely to resemble those of the Parliament in London. Accordingly, when the Session commenced, on February 3, 1825, the Ministerial document called “ The speech from the Throne,” suggested the suppression of the Association; and Mr. Goulburn, who was Irish Secretary, obtuined leave to bring in a Bill for that purpose, on that day week. When intelligence of this reached Dublin, the Catholic Association resolved that a Deputation should be sent to London to watch over and take care of the interests of the Catholics. Messrs. O'Connell and Sheil were specially intrusted with this duty — all the Catholic Peers were declared members of the Deputation, which farther included as many members of the Association as chose to gwell the cavalcade. Mr. Goulburu's bill was introduced. On February 17, 1825, Mr. Brougham presented a petition from the Catholics of Ireland, against a measure which so vitally threatened their interests, and moved that they be heard at the bar of the house, by thenselves or their counsel, in opposition to the Act. This motion was keenly de bated (as is described by Mr. Sheil in the text) and rejected by 222 to 189
tance. It involved a great personal sacrifice upon the part of Mr. O'Connell; and, independently of any immediate loss in his profession, Mr. Shiel could not fail to perceive that it must prejudice him in some degree as a barrister, to turn aside from the beaten track of his profession, in the pursuit of a brilliant but somewhat illusory object. It was, however, next to impossible to disobey the injunction of a whole people — they accepted of this honorable trust. At the same time that counsel were appointed, it was determined that other gentlemen should attend the debates of the House of Commons in the character of deputies, and should constitute a sort of embassy to the English people.
The plan of its constitution was a little fantastic. Any person who deemed it either pleasurable or expedient to attach himself to this delegation was declared to be a member, and, in consequence, a number of individuals enrolled themselves as volunteers in the national service. I united myself to these political missionaries, not from any hope that I should succeed in detaching Lord Eldon from the church, or in banishing the fear of Oxford from the eyes of Mr. Peel,* but from a natural curiosity to observe the scenes of interest and novelty, into which, from my representative character, I thought it not improbable that I should be introduced. I set out in quest of
votes. The Association-suppression bill passed rapidly through the Commons: reached the Lords, on the first, and received the Royal Assent on the ninth of March, 1825. Almost as a matter of course, and as if to fulfil O'Connell's boast that he could drive a coach-and-four through any Act of Parliament," a new Catholic Association immediately sprung up out of the ashes of the old.-M.
* Peel was educated at Harrow, where Byron was his schoolmate. Thence he went to Oxford University, where he graduated with the highest honors, rarely conferred upon one person, though his successor Mr. Gladstone also won them. He took what is called “ doul le-firse" honorz --i. e. in classics and science. When Abbott, the Speaker, was raised to the peerage in 1817, Peel was elected to succeed him ng member for bis Alma Mater, and retained this distinction (which, on account of his support of Catholic Emancipation, Canning had vainly sighed for, as he confessed, at the close), until 1829, when, ceasing to be Peel the intolerant, he rendered justice to the Catholics, and was defeated, on a contest for the seat for the University, by Şir. R. H. Inglis, a man of small ability but extensive illiberality. In 1825, as an Anti-Catholic, Peel was popular at Oxford.- M.
political adventure, and determined to commit to a sort of journal whatever should strike me to be deserving of note. Upon my return to Ireland, I sent to certain of my friends some extracts from the diary which I had kept, in conformity with this resolution. They told me that I had heard and seen much of what was not destitute of interest, and, at their sug. gestion, I have wrought the observations, which were loosely thrown together, into a more regular shape; although they will, I fear, carry with them an evidence of the baste and heedlessness with which they were originally set down.
The party of deputies to which I had annexed myself trarelled in a barouche belonging to Mr. O'Connell, of which he was kind enough to offer us the use. I fancy that we made rather a singular appearance, for the eyes of every passenger were fixed upon us as we passed ; and at Coventry (a spot sacred to curiosity), the mistress of the inn where we stopped to change horses, asked me, with a mixture of inqnisitiveness and wonder, and after many apologies for the liberty she took in putting the interrogatory, “ who the gentlemen were ?" I contented myself with telling her that we were Irish. “Parliament folk, I suppose ?” to which, with a little mental reservation, I nodded assent.
Mr. O'Connell, as usual, attracted the larger portion of the public gaze. He was seated on the box of the barouche, with a huge cloak folded about him, which seemed to be a revival of the famous Irish mantle; though far be it from me to insinuate. that it was ever dedicated to some of the purposes to which it is suggested, by Spenser, that the national garment was devoted. His tall and ample figure enveloped in the trappings that fell widely round him, and his open and manly physiognomy, rendered him a very conspicuous object, from the elevated station which he occupied. Wherever we stopped, he called with an earnest and sonorous tone for a newspaper, being naturally solicitous to learn whether he should be heard at the bar of the house; and, in invoking “mine host," for the parliamentary debates, he employed a cadence and gesture which carried along with them the unequivocal intimations of his country.
Nothing deserving of mention occurred until we had reached Wolverhampton. We arrived at that town about eight o'clock in the morning, with keener appetites than befitted the season of abstinence (Lent), during which we were condemned to travel. The table was strewed with a tantalizing profusion of the choicest fare. Every eye was fixed upon an unhallowed round of beef, which seemed to have been deposited in the centre of the breakfast-room with a view to “lead us into temptation,” when Mr. O'Connell exclaimed, “Recollect that you are within sacred precincts. The conqueror of Sturges, and the terror of the Vetoists, has made Wolverhampton holy.” This admonition saved us on the verge of the precipice - we thought that we bebeld the pastoral staff of the famous Doctor raised up between us and the forbidden feast, and turned slowly and reluctantly from its unavailing contemplation to the lenten mediocrity of lry toast and creamless tea. We had finished our repast, when it was suggested that we ought to pay Doctor Milner* a visit before we proceeded upon our journey. This proposition was adopted with alacrity, and we went forth in a body in quest of that energetic divine. We experienced some little difficulty in discovering his abode, and received most evangelical looks and ambiguous answers to our inquiries. A damsel of thirty, with a physiognomy which was at once comely and demure, replied to us at first with a mixture of affected ignorance and ostentatious disdain ;
* At this time (1825), Dr. John Milner, the eminent Catholic controversialist, was seventy-three years old; he died in 1826.– Born in 1752, he completed his education at Douay, in France, was ordained a priest in 1777, and was stationed, two years after, at Winchester, where there were several French prisoners who were Catholics. In 1782, he published a funeral discourse on the death of Bishop Challoner, and became a voluminous writer. His learning, research, and skill, as an Antiquarian, were displayed in his History of the Antiquities of Winchester, and other works of merit. In his limited History he offended the prejudices of Dr. Sturges, a prebendary of the Cathedral, who assailed him in a History of Popery, to which the reply was Milner's wellknown Letters to a Prebendary, in which he boldly and ably defended the Papal Church. He had a somewhat angry discussion, also, with Charles Butler, the Catholic barrister, on ecclesiastical points. In 1803, Dr. Milner was apppinted Vicar-Apostolic in the Midland District of England, and removed to Wolverhampton - he was now Bishop of Castabala, in partibus. In 1818,