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When we state that potatoes are the food of the poor, we understate their importance ; they are more, they are the protection of the rich against a poor-rate, and therefore invaluable to you as well as to the peasant.

“Resolved—That potatoes are the principal subsistence of the poor in Ireland, and are, in a great part of the kingdom, most fortunately exempt from tithe”.

“ Resolved—That it would much contribute to relieve the the south of this kingdom, if the benefit of said exemption was extended to them; and if it shall be made to appear that the owners of tithe shall suffer thereby, this House will make them just com. pensation".

In three-fourths of this kingdom potatoes pay no tithe, in the south they not only pay, but pay most heavily. They pay frequently in proportion to the poverty and helplessness of the countryman; for in the south it is the practice to crouch to the rich, and to encroach upon the poor; hence, perhaps, in the south, the mutability of the common people. What so galling, what so inflammatory, as the comparative view of the condition of His Majesty's subjects in one part of the kingdom and the other. In one part their sustenance is free, and in the other tithed in the greatest degree; so that a grazier coming from the west to the south shall inform the latter, that with him neither potatoes nor hay are tithed; and a weaver coming from the north shall inform the south, that in his country neither potatoes nor flax are tithed; and thus are men in the present unequal and unjust state of things, taught to repine, not only by their intercourse with the pastor, but with one another.

To redress this requires no speculation, no extraordinary exercise of the human faculties, no long fatiguing process of reason and calculation, but merely to extend to the poor of the south the benefits which are enjoyed by His Majesty's subjects in the other parts of Ireland—it is to put the people of the south on a level with their fellow-creatures. it shall be said that such an exemption would cause a great loss to the parson, what a terrible discovery does that objection disclose ! that the clergy of the south are principally supported by the poor-by those whom they ought, as moral men, to relieve, and Christian men, support, according to the strictest discipline of the church,

To excite a certain quarter to this principle, perlap the best method would be the stimulation of example. I shall accordingly produce two examples—one example drawn from the country supposed to be the most bigoted in Europe, and the other from that man

supposed to be the most prone to clerical avarice and ambitiou. The first, the kingdom of Spain, the latter is the Pope. In 1780, Pope Pius VI. sends a brief to the King of Spain, enabling him to dispose of one-third of ecclesiastical estates and benefices in his presentation, to which no cure of souls was annexed, in charity; and further sets forth in his brief this reason, that the relief and succour of the poor was particularly incumbent on him. The King of Spain, in 1783, pursuant to this brief, published his edict, reciting the brief, and appointing a commission to dispose of the third, as above recited, in the support of the poor, and then he specifies the objects : endowments of all kinds of retreats and receptacles for the poor, such as hospitals and houses of charity, foundations for orphans and foundlings. The better to enforce the execution of the first edict, the King of Spain publishes another, commanding in a peremptory inanner the execution of the first; and he adds—a principle inseparable from the claims of tithes—that such charitable aids peculiarly belong to ecclesiastical rents, according to the most sound and constant discipline of the church.

Here are the Sovereign Pontiff of the Catholic faith and the Catholic King of Spain distributing one-third of a part of the revenues of their church for the poor; and here are some of the enlightened doctors of our church deprecating such a principle, and guarding their riches against the encroaching of Christian charity. I hope they will never again afford such an opportunity of comparing them with the Pope, or contrasting them with the apostles. I do not think their riches will be diminished; but if they were to be so, is not the question directly put to them, which will they prefer? their flock or their riches ? for which did Christ die, or the apostles suffer martyrdom, or Paul preach, or Luther protest? Was it for the tithe of flax, or the tithe of barren land, or the tithe of potatoes, or the tithe-proctor, or the tithe-farmer, or the tithe-pig? Your riches are secure; but if they were impaired by your acts of benevolence. does our religion depend on your riches ? On such a principle your Saviour should have accepted of the kingdoms of the Earth and their glory, and have capitulated with the Devil for the propagation of the faith. Never was a great principle rendered prevalent by power or riches ? low and artificial means are resorted to for the fulfilling the little views of men, their love of power, their avarice, or ambition; but to apply to the great design of God such wretched auxiliaries, is to forget His divinity and to deny His omnipotence. What! does the word come more powerfully from a dignitary in purple and fine linen, than it came from the poor apostle with cothing

but the spirit of the Lord on his lips, and the glory of God standing on his right hand ? What! my Lords, not cultivate barren land not encourage the manufactures of your country; not relieve the poor of your flock, if the church is to be at any expense thereby! Where shall we find this principle ? not in the Bible. I have adverted to the sacred writings, without criticism, I allow, but not withont devotion; there is not in any part of them such a sentiment; not in she purity of Christ, nor the poverty of the apostles, nor the prophecy of Isaiah, nor the patience of Job, nor the harp of David, nor the wisdom of Solomon! No, my Lords; on this subject your Bible is against you; the precepts and practice of the primitive church against you; the great words increase and multiply, the axiom of philosophy, that nature does nothing in vain; the productive principle that formed the system, and defends it against the ambition and encroachments of its own elements ; the reproductive principle which continues the system, and which makes vegetation support life, and life administer back again to vegetation ; taking from the grave its sterile quality, and making death itself propagate to life and succession ? the plenitude of things, and the majesty of nature, through all her organs, manifest against such a sentiment; this blind fatality of error, which, under pretence of defending the wealth of the priesthood, checks the growth of mankind, arrests his industry, and makes the sterility of the planet a part of its religion.

As I have proposed three measures for the benefit of the people, I shall now submit a fourth for the benefit of the church. It is a resolution which is as follows:

“ Resolved, That this House will be ready to relieve the owners of tithes from the necessity of drawing the same, and to give said owners a power of recovering the value of the same, in all cases, by civil bill, or otherwise, provided said owners of tithe shall conform to certain ratages to be ascertained by act of Parliament”.

The resolution will be best explained by a bill, which I have drawn, and which I mean to propose hereafter; the brief of which I will now state to you. The bill enacts, that every owner of tithe shall be relieved from the difficulty of drawing the same, by civi; bill, for any sum whatsoever, provided said owner of titho shall conform to certain ratages in the bill set forth; these ratages will be such as Parliament shall think proper, different, perhaps, according co the different provinces, and the result of the inquiry of provincial committees.

I have set forth, in the bill for Munster, such a ratage as was Lately stater hv learned authority, as the average ratage of the

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richest diocess therein ; the principal articles of which are, potatoes. the Irish acre, 6s., wheat, 6s., barley, 53., meadow, 3s., oats, 38.

The bill enacts, that, in the neighbourhood of a city, the tithe of meadow shall be increased; it further enacts, that the owner of tithe shall have a power, on due notice, to enter in order to survey; it enacts that the above ratages shall be estimated as worth so many stone of bread corn, which is every seven years to be valued by the clerk of the market, who strikes the averages for the kingdom ; that septenuial valuation of the corn to be the septennial ratage for the swner of tithe.

The bill enacts, that all small dues shall cease, and that instead thereof, in parishes where small dues shall have been paid for these last ten years, a valuation shall be made of such, by a person appointed in vestry; said valuation to be levied, not off the poor, nor the particular individual, but generally after the manner of baronial charges; my idea and fixed intention being to relieve the poor of the south from the tithe of potatoes, and the north from small dues; an endeavour which, however opposed, will by perseverance succeed; it is rational, it is just.

The bill contains a proviso, which saves and confirms all kinds of moduses or exemption; so that what has not hitherto paid, shall not pay now; thus potatoes and other articles, where they have not usually paid, shall not become titheable.

The next resolution is to compel residence. It is strange that such a resolution should ever become necessary.

“ Resolved, That, the better to secure the residence of the clergy, a moderate tax on non-residence would be expedient”.

In the long contest of the clergy on the subject of tithe, I do not find that residence has been much insisted on, as useful to the Protestant interest, though tithe has been thought indispensable. Provided tithe shall be paid, it seems what is done for the tithe, the preaching and the praying, is not material, in the opinion of the grave and reverend personages. The army do not act by proxy; the commissioners, the judges, do not act by deputation. I have never heard of virtual redemption, salvation by remote and magneti cal operation. Residence is required by 'canon, common, and statuto law; by the canon law, a parson, who left his living without lcave, was deprived. By the common law it appears that residence was necessary; for when an action was brought against the rector of B., be pleaded that he was commorant in D. The plca was overru!al, because he had not denied himself to be the rector of B., and his parish determined his locality vecessary by several statutes The act of

Henry VIII., after forty days' non-residence, imposes a fine. The act of Edward VI. after eighty days' absence, disables the parson from recovering on his own leases. The act of Henry VI. subjects the parson who leaves the country to the forfeiture of his annual income. But though the law were silent, decency on this occasion is lond.

What a cast and complexion are thrown on this question, and those who so strenuously insist on the law for tithes, and so commonly transgress the body of law that requires them to attend the duties of religion! In England, residence is better observed and enforced. The practice of England has shown a greater regard both for husbandry and prayer; and yet in England residence is not more pecessary, because our lower people want more instruction, and our country can less afford any addition to the absentee drain, to which an absentee tithe, and absentee Gospel, are sad aggravations. Talk not of a want of glebe-houses, nor even of churches. Has the pres. byter a glebe-house? Has the priest a glebe-house ? Does the latter preach the errors of the Church of Rome from a straw-built hovel? And do our clergy, to preach the truth of the Protestant religion, require a mansion ? Had the first-fruits been, by the richer parts of their own order, and particularly the bishops, faithfully and justly valued, and applied to the building of churches and the increase of poor livings, the advocates for non-residence would want their voluptuous apology. But it has happened that the firstfruits, by a remote and antiquated valuation, are rendered of no account; they do not, by that valuation, which was made in the reign of Henry VIII., produce more than £430; at this day the bishoprics amount to near £70,000 a-year, the first-fruit of which, without going farther, would be a great fund for building of charches and glebe-houses, and increasing poor livings. You see that, in fact, first-fruits are now a most miserable modus. And it is very remarkable, that the very men who object to any modus, however rational, in favour of the manufacturer, have themselves set up a modus against the church ; a modus, the most irrational and illiberal, against the poor of their own order, and the house of their own God! “We cannot reside, because we have neither house nor church”; that is, the richer part of your order have taken to themselves the funds of the church, and now you have no place to

But though I would compel residence, I would compel it by a moderate process—a moderate tax, to commence after absence for a certain time. I would not leave the dispensing with residence to

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