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Lord Chancellor. And do you think that idea has been successfully inculcated into the common people?

Emmet. It has not been my fortune to communicate much with them on that subject, so that I cannot undertake to say how far it has been successfully inculcated into them ; but of this I am certain, that since the establishment of the United Irish system, it has been inculcated into all the middling classes, and much more among the common people, than ever it was before.

Lord Chancellor. And what grievances would such a reformed legislature remove?

Emmet. In the first place, it would cause a complete aboli. tion of tythes : in the next, by giving the common people an encreased value in the democracy, it would better their situation, and make them more respected by their superiors ; the condition of the poor would be ameliorated ; and what is perhape of more consequence than all the rest, a system of national education would be established.

Lord Dillon. The abolition of tythes would be a very good thing ; but don't

you think it would be more beneficial to the landlords than the tenants ?

Archbishop of Cashel. Aye, it is they would benefit by it.

Emmet. My lords, I am ready to grant, that if tythes were now abolished, without a reform, there are landlords who would raise the rent on their tenants, when they were making new leases, the full value of the tythes, and, if they could, more; but if a reform succeeded the abolition of tythes, such a reformed legis. lature would very badly know, or very badly perform its duty, if it did not establish such a system of landed tenures as would prevent landlords from doing so; and let me tell your lordships,

that

that if a revolution ever takes place, a very different system of political economy will be established, from what has hitherto prevailed here.

Lord Glentworth. Then your intention was to destroy the church?

Emmet. Pardon me, my lord, my intention never was 'to destroy the church. My wish decidedly was to overturn the establishment.

Lord Dillon. I understand you-and have it as it is in France ?

Emmet, As it is in America, my lords

Lord Kilwarden. Pray, Mr. Emmet, do you know of any communications with France since your arrest ?

/

Emmet. I do, my lord, Mr. Cooke told me of one.

Lord Kilwarden. But don't

you
know in

any
other

way, whether communications are still going on between this country and France ?

Emmet. No; but I have no doubt that even after we shall have left this country, there will remain among the 500,000 and upwards which compose the Union, many persons of sufficient talents, enterprize, enthusiasm, and opportunity, who will continue the old, or open a new communication with France, if it shall be necessary; and in looking over, in my own mind, the persons whom I know of most talents and enterprize, I cannot help suggesting to myself the persons I think most likely to do so ; but I must be excused pointing at them.

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THE EXAMINATION

OF

THOMAS ADDIS EMMET,

BEFORE THE SECRET COMMITTEE OF THE HOUSE OF COMMONS,

AUGUST 14, 1798.

was

LORD CASTLEREAGH mentioned that the minutes of my examination before the lords had been transmitted to them, and that they only wanted to ask me a few questions in explanation of those minutes. The general turn of the examination

therefore the same as that before the upper house ; but I could observe much more manifestly this time than before, a design, out of my answers, to draw the conclusion that nothing would content the people but such changes as would be a departure from what they choose to call the English constitution, and the English system; and therefore I presume they meant to infefe that the popular claims must be resisted at all hazards. The Speaker seemed to me to take the lead in conducting the investigation to this point.

Lord Castlereagh. Mr. Emmet, you said in your examination before the lords, that the French had not made known the

place place where they intended landing; how then will you explain an address which we have here, stating that the French were shortly expected in Bantry Bay ?

Emmet. My Lord, I know nothing at present of that address; but I suppose on farther enquiry it will be found to be some mistake, as I am positive they never mentioned Bantry Bay in any communication ; I know, on the contrary, Galway Bay was looked on as the probable place of their landing.

N. B. I find, upon ?nquiry, that address is without a date, and was written after the French had disappeared from Bantry Bay, and were generally expected to return.

Mr. Alexander. I have here some resolutions, which he read, and which, among other things, spoke of the extent of the corfiscations that would be made in the event of a revolution, and kow they should be applied) - do you know any thing of them ?

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Emmet. I have a recollection of having read them before ; and if that recollection be right, they are resolutions that have been passed by an individual society at Belfast, and were seized ai thé arrests of Barrett, Burnside, and others.

Mr. Alexander. They are the same,

Emmet. Then I hope the committee will draw no inference from them as to the views of the executive or of the whole, body. You know the north well, and that every man there turns his mind more or less on speculative politics ; but certainly the opinion of a few of the least informed among them cannot be consi. dered as influencing the whole.

Mr. J. C. Beresford. Aye, but would you be able to make such people give up their own opinion, to follow yours?

Emmet.

Emmet. I am convinced we should ; because I know we have done it before; on points where their opinions and wishes were very strong.

Mr. Alexander. How did you hope to hold the people in order and good conduct when the reins of government were loosened ?

Emmet. By other equally powerful reins. It was for this purpose that I considered the promoting of organization to be a moral duty. Having no doubt that a revolution would, and will take place, unless prevented by removing the national grievances, I saw in the organization the only way of preventing its being such as would give the nation lasting causes of grief and shame. Whether there be organization or not, the revolution will take place; but if the people be classed and arranged for the purpose, the control which heads of their own appointment will have over them, by means of the different degrees of representation, and organs of communication, will, I hope, prevent them from committing those acts of outrage and cruelty which may be expected from a justly irritated, but ignorant and uncontroled populace.

Mr. Alexander. But do vou think there were in the Union such organs

of communication as had an influence over the lower orders, and were at the same time fit to communicate and do busimess with persons of a better condition ?

Emmet. I am sure there were multitudes of extremely shrewd and sensible men, whose habits of living were with the lower orders, but who were perfectly well qualified for doing business with persons of any condition.

Speaker. You say the number of United Irishmen is five hundred thousand do you look upon them all as fighting men?

Emmet.

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