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by more than the individual, to whom it is addressed. You frankly tell us,* « But, my address has motives that extend beyond myself. Your Lordship, and those of your religious communion, have a much deeper interest in the facts, which I shall think it my duty to state. In this I completely sympathize with you.,
much für ther: for my address to the public in my first His torical Letter to you, as well as in this second, involves not only the dearest interests of those of the Roman Catholic communion, but many facts, opinions and principles, which go to affect the harmony, strength, and welfare of the British Empire. Let us then for a moment lose sight of the glitter, glare, and lustre of the nobility, title and dignity of the persons, (1) to whom our respective letters are addressed; and in plain English avow, and be it so understood by all our readers, that your letters to Lord Fingal are the intended answer to my representations of different
conduct in advocating, as you say you did, zealously and temperately, the Catholic cause. Therefore, in the name of your noble correspondent, you invite all your readers « to pay particular attention to my * Historical Letter to Columbanus, and to the third * volume of my Continuation of the History of
Ireland, published in 1811.» And my Historical Letter to you, published by Blenkinsop, in
* 1st Let. to Lord Fingal, p.5.
(1) I have to apologize to the worthy Baronct, for not hating, in the first Historical Letter, dignified him twith his full title and description. I have endeavoured to make the amende honorable by displaying out the face of this, the several claims to respect, which he has affixed to the favorite work largely circulated, but not published by him in 1806, viz. The Subŝtance of additional Observations, intended to have been delivered in the House of Commons.
Dublin, 1814, is the reply to that answer; to which, if report speak truly, you do not mean to rejoin ; having come to a resolution to commit yourself no more to the press upon this subject. --I hazard no conjecture; I offer no comment upon your future silence. The record of my replication, long and special as it is*, cannot be withdrawn
* The natural, often blind, and most frequently partial fondness of an author for his own productions, is constantly pregnant with imaginary, beyond the real reasons and causes, that stand in the way of that extensive circulation of his works, which he had anticipated. I affect no exemptions from the common feelings of every litterary parent. Though I certainly laboured with unusual assiduity to keep up the likeness in taking the Portrait of the Honorable Baronet from life, whilst acting in the Catholic cause, yet few persons have hitherto chosen to become possessed of it. No one hitherto, that I have heard of, has denied the resemblance; except the subject of the portrait, to whom it appears a caricature; and therefore, perhaps, a libellous freedom taken with an Honorable Member of the Imperial House of Commons. Some object to it as an insignificant, uninteresting, and uninviting subject in itself. Others dislike the manner, style, and spirit of the limner, and therefore disrelish and discountenance any of his productions, whatever may be his merits for truth, colouring, or composition. Some find fault with the scene, action, and attitude, in which the honorable person is exhibited ; whilst others unreasonably complain, that the portrait was not taken
back, before certain acrid humours of his constitution had broken out, and decomposed the fascinating symmetry of his features. The feelings of many are distressed in viewing the portrait, at being forced to behold an old friend with a new face. I expect not to work any change in the minds of any of these descriptions of persons. There is also a class of persons, to whom a letter from a Popish Barrister to the zealous advocate of the Popish cause, holds out no spark of invitation to purchase it: they may disagree, bicker, and wrangle between themselves ; their personal differences affect themselves only; and those arise out of a subject, which no longer commands novelty or interest. To these, however, 'I beg lcare to insinuate, that besides the striking likeness of the
from the inquisitive or interested eye of any person, who takes to heart the justice or importance
announced portrait, the composition takes in some groupes
of no slight importance in the occurrence of the day, and represents in full meridian glow, many singular tactics, mancuvres, and achievements never before represented on canvas, nothing of a great variety of answers, refutations, and retoris to personal charges against me, which the Honorable Baronet has thought sufficiently interesting to the public, to bring forward in his letters to Lord Fingal, which swell out to 122 pages in octavo. Beyond this they will find the methodical habits of the Honorable Baronet's composing and publishing his supposed or intended speeches in Parliament: and the manner, in which reports in the newspapers of Members'. speeches in Parliament are taken ; and when they are evidence of their truth and substance; with a curious specimen of a speech put into the mouth of an Honorable Member, which was never uttered by him. They will there find how, and at what time, and by whom the Honorable Baronet has been initiated into the spirit
, principles, and doctrines of Jansenism, which led him to anticipate the facility of the two Churches uniting, from the approbation, after a very detailed examination, of the 39 Articles of the Church of England by the Sorbonne, and their entire concurrence in the articles of faith, Ecclesiastical discipline, and moral doctrine.-(Vide 2d Let. to Lord Fingal, p. 48.) Not unconnected with this spiritual vaccination for the lues Janseniana, will be found that noted admonition of the Honorable Baronet to the House of Commons, on the 11th day of May, 1813; that they were increasing an Order of Jesuits at home, etc.; and his declaration in the House on the 24th of that month, that his fears on that head were not Protestant fears, but Catholic fears. He stated that fact in conformity with the wishes of the Catholics themselves. This gave rise to the short sketch of the nature and spirit of that Order, from their foundation to their destruction by Pope Ganganelli, which closes my first letter to Sir John, and in a great measure gives rise to the necessity of writing this second to him. In the first will also be found several exposures of grievous mistatements and unblushing misquotations, upon matters touching the vitality of the Constitution, and the leading principles of the present system of Government.
of keeping nearly six millions of his Majesty's Roman Catholic subjects excluded from an equal participation of the Constitution with their fellowsubjects, on account of their adherence to the religion of their first Christian ancestors. Your knowledge, Sir John, of your original profession, taught you, that there must regularly be an end of our pleadiugs, whilst you persist in your resolution not to rejoin to my replication. You dropt your correspondence with the Earl of Fingal, and to disprove my assertion, that you weré beset and plied by others, you not only have not resumed your communications with Dr. O'Conor (the author of Columbanus), but, if report speak truth, you have fallen off from yourconfidential intimacy with Mr. Butler. And the public has to lament your stern resolve to favor them no more with the publication of your short-hand writer's reports of your speeches in substance, which you avow; nor of draughts of speeches intended to be uttered, nor the substance of additional observations, etc. As, however, you still persist (in your own steady and plain dealing, as you treat Bishop Milner,) with operose industry to apply your shoulders to the cause, and the absentees from the House of Commons are now driven to the newspaper reports for the substance of your speeches, which they have no chance of reading in an authenticated and avowed form, you will acquit me of design or malice, if I follow the reports of respectable London papers. Indeed, Sir John, I have not, nor ever had a wish, neither did, nor do I chuse to put verbal inaccuracies of expression into your mouth, on the loose authority of some newspaper.
I am free, Sir, to own, that I expect this second portrait of you, to meet with more success than the first. The value of an exact likeness of so prominent a character amidst the great actors upon the counter-revolutionary theatre of Europe is, from a variety of causes, incalculably enhanced. For brevity sake (1), I shall only refer to one. This is the
+ I certainly must plead guilty to the charge of prolixity, which the honourable triumvirate, who have graced their attacks against me with their names, have fastened upon me. Sir Richard Musgrave (he has discovered the valuable art of announcing his name in every page without the aid of imprint or title) compares the ponderous mass of my Historical Review to the unwieldy bulk of the writer; and I :nformed the public, in my Historical Letter 10 Sir Richard Musgrave, ihat in defiance of the statutes to prevent the growth of Popery, I measured six feet two inches in height, and weighed nineteen stone and a half. The Rev. Charles O'Connor, D.D. charges me with swelling my voluminous compilation with borrowed paragraphs without proofs, and with calumnies; and with writing history by the foot square, from laziness or incapacity. I hope he has been completely answered in my Historical Letier to him, published in 1812, and my reply to him, published in 1813. Sir John Cox Hippisley, according to the report of his speçch in The Globe of the 22d of November, 1814 (his favourite paper), said, « Mr. F. Plowden, « who valued himself on being considered the Historian of « Ireland, but whose historic pages were more known by o their bulk than their accuracy, had written a very
diffused « eulogy of the Order of Jesuits) in which he had been edu« cated. Besides these Gentlernen, some other anonymous writers have, assailed my productions. One person, indeed, who has lately announced the Irish Historical Library, has prefaced the first number, to which he subscribes the name Frederick W. Conway, with a most ferocious attack upon me. Such general abuse will never provoke an answer.
says, (p. viii.) « He takes most of his documents from Curry, for the « purpose of swelling his composition into three ponderous a quartos. But it is not merely his book-making disposition, a that I object to Mr. Plowden. There is a vulgarity, and « rancour and meanness in the man's manners, as a political a writer, which to me, I own, are disgusting, etc. A long habit of writing for newspapers, not only teaches the art, bui the profits of ephemeral abuse.