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place in the first Parliament of the United Kingdom ; but if at the time aforesaid no writ shall have issued to supply such vacancy, none shall thereafter issue until the same be ordered by resolution of the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom, as in the case of any other vacancy of a seat in the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom.
VIII. And be it enacted, That whenever His Majesty, his heirs and successors, shall by proclamation under the great seal of the United Kingdom, summon a new Parliament of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, the chancellor, keeper, or commissioners of the great seal of Ireland, shall cause writs to be issued to the several counties, cities, the College of the Holy Trinity of Dublin, and boroughs in that part of the United Kingdom called Ireland, specified in this act, for the election of members to serve in the Parliament of the United Kingdom according to the numbers hereinbefore set forth; and whenever any vacancy of a seat in the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom for any of the said counties, cities, or boroughs, or for the said College of the Holy Trinity of Dublin, shall arise by death or otherwise, the chancellor, keeper, or commissioners of the great seal, upon such vacancy being certified to them respectively by the proper warrant, shall forthwith cause a writ to issue for the election of a person to fill up such vacancy, and such writs, and the returns thereon respectively being returned into the Crown Office in that part of the United Kingdom called Ireland, shall from thence be transmitted to the Crown Office in that part of the United Kingdom called England, and be certified to the House of Commons in the same manner as the like returns have been usually, or shall hereafter be certified; and copies of the said writs and returns, attested by the chancellor, keeper, or commissioners of the great seal of Ireland for the time being, shall be preserved in the Crown Office of Ireland, and shall be evidence of such writs and returns, in case the original writs and returns shall be lost.
IX. Be it enacted, that the said bill so herein recited be taken as a part of this act, and be deemed to all intents and purposes incorporated within the same; provided always, that the said herein recited bill shall receive the royal assent, and be passed into a law previous to the first day of January, which shall be in the
year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and one; and provided also, that if the said herein recited bill shall not receive the royal assent, and be passed into a law, previous to the said first day of January, which shall be in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and one, this act and every part thereof shall be of no force or validity whatsoever. X. And be it enacted, that the great seal of Ireland may,
if His Majesty shall so think fit, after the Union, be used in like manner as before the Union, except where it is otherwise provided by the foregoing articles, within that part of the United Kingdom called Ireland, and that His Majesty may, so long as he shall think fit, continue the privy council of Ireland, to be his privy council for that part of the United Kingdom called Ireland.
MR. FOX MOVES FOR A COMMITTEE ON THE ROMAN CATHOLIC
May 13. 1805.
In the month of April, Mr. Grattan was returned for Malton, a
Yorkshire borough, and in the ensuing month he took his seat for the first time in the Imperial Parliament. Much curiosity was naturally excited to hear a speaker of whom so much had been said, and who, in his own country, had acted so conspicuous a part in obtaining for her a constitution, and in defending it at the period of its extinction; an opportunity soon presented itself, on the subject of the Roman Catholic Petition, which had been entrusted to Mr. Fox, and which, on the 25th of March, he
presented to the House. It was read and laid upon the table. The 10th of May was named as the day on which he meant to bring forward a motion upon the subject, this was altered to the 13th, when, after a long and able speech, in which he reviewed the policy of Great Britain towards Ireland, set forth the disabilities under which the Roman Catholics laboured, and the fidelity with which they had adhered to the fortunes of Great Britain, he concluded by moving, “ That the petition be referred to the consideration of a committee of the whole House:” this was opposed by Dr. Duigenan, who entered into a long and violent invective against the Roman Catholics; he quoted several obsolete decrees of Rome, and acts of various councils, and declared that the Catholics were hostile to the connection with Great Britain, and that any bill in favour of their liberties, would be a violation of His Majesty's coronation oath: after he had concluded,
Mr. GRATTAN rose, he said, to avoid the example of the member who had just sat down, and instead of calumniating either party, to defend both.
The past troubles of Ireland, the rebellion of 1641, and the wars which followed, (said the honourable gentleman,) I do not wholly forget, but I only remember them to deprecate the example and renounce the animosity. The penal code which went before, and followed those times, I remember also, but only enough to know, that the causes and reasons for that code have totally expired; and as on one side the Protestant should relinquish his animosity on account of the rebellions, so should the Catholics relinquish their animosity on account of the laws. The question is not stated by the member; it is not whether you will keep in a state of disqualification a few Irish Catholics, but whether you will keep in a state of languor and neutrality a fifth of the empire; before you impose such a sentence on yourself, you will require better arguments than those which the member has advanced; he has substantially told you that the Irish Catholic church, which is, in fact, more independent than the Catholic church here, is the worst in Europe ; that the Irish Catholics, our own kindred, are the worst of papists; that the distinction, a distinction made by the law, propounded by ourselves, and essential to the state, between temporal and spiritual power, is a vain discrimination, and that the people of Ireland, to be good Catholics, must be bad subjects: and finally, he has emphatically said, " that an Irish Catholic never is, never was, never will be, a faithful subject to a British Protestant king:' his words are, they hate all Protestants and all Englishmen.' Thus has he pronounced against his country three curses: eternal war with one another, eternal war with England, and eternal peace with France; so strongly does he inculcate this, that if a Catholic printer were, in the time of invasion, to publish his speech, that printer might be indicted for treason, as the publisher of a composition administering to the Catholics a stimulative to rise, and advancing the authority of their religion for rebellion. His speech consists of four parts; - Ist, an invective uttered against the religion of the Catholics ; 2d, an invective uttered against the present generation ; 3d, an invective against the past; and 4th, an invective against the future : here the limits of creation interposed, and stopped the member. It is to defend those different generations, and their religion, I rise; to rescue the Catholic from his attack, and the Protestants from his defence.
The civil interference of the Pope, his assumed power of deposition, together with the supposed doctrine, that no faith was to be kept with heretics, were the great objections to the claims of the Catholics; to convict them, the learned doctor has gone forth with a sinister zeal to collect his offensive materials, and behold he returns laden with much disputed comment, much doubtful text, much of executive decrees, and of such things as are become obsolete, because useless, and are little attended to, because very dull and very uninteresting, and wherein the learned gentleman may, for that reason, take many little liberties in the way of misquotation,
or the way of suppression; all these, the fruits of his unprofitable industry, he lays before you : very kindly and liberally he does it, but of this huge and tremendous collection, you must reject a principal part, as having nothing to say to the question, namely, all that matter which belongs to the court of Rome as distinct from the church; 2dly, of the remnant after that rejection, you must remove every thing that belongs to the church of Rome which is not confined to doctrine regarding faith and moral, exclusive of, and unmixed with, any temporal matter whatever; after this correction, you will have reduced this gentleman of the fifteenth century to two miserable canons, the only rewards of his labour, and result of his toil, both passing centuries before the Reformation, and therefore not bearing on the Protestant or the Reformers ; the first is a canon excommunicating persons who do not abide by a profession of faith contained in a preceding canon, which notably concludes with the following observation, that virgins and married women may make themselves agreeable to God; now I cannot think such a canon can excite any grave impression or alarm in this House, passed six hundred years ago, three hundred years before the birth of the reformation made by lay princes, as well as ecclesiastics, and never acknowledged or noticed in these islands, even in times of their popery. The other canon, that of Constance, goes to deny the force of a free passport, or safe conduct to heretics, given by temporal princes in bar of the proceedings of the church. Without going farther into that canon, it is sufficient to say, that it is positively affirmed by the Catholics, that this does not go farther than to assert the power of the church to inquire into heresy, notwithstanding any impediments from lay princes; and farther, there is an authority for that interpretation, and in contradiction to the member's interpretation, not only above his authority, but any that it is in his studies to produce: I mean that of Grotius, who mentions, that the imputation cast on the Catholics on account of this canon is unfounded. Here I stop, and submit, that the member is in the state of a plaintiff, who cannot make out his case,
notwithstanding his two canons; that he has failed most egregiously, and has no right to throw the other party on their defence; however, the Catholics have gone as far as relates to him gratuitously into their case, and have not availed themselves of the imbecility of their opponents, and they have been enabled to produce on the subject of the above charges, the opinion of six universities, to whom those charges, in the shape of queries, have been submitted : Paris, Louvaine, Salamanca, Douey, Valladolid, Alcala. These universities have all answered, and have, in their answers, not only disclaimed the imputed doctrines, but disclaimed them with abhorrence. The Catholics have not stopped here; they have drawn up a declaration of nine articles, renouncing the iniputed doctrines, together with other doctrines, or views objected to them; they have gone farther, they have desired the Protestants to name their own terms of abjuration : the Protestants have done so, and here is the instrument of their compact - it is an oath framed by a Protestant parliament, principally manufactured by the honourable noember himself, in which the Irish Catholics not only abjure the imputed doctrine, but are sworn to the state, and to the present establishment of the Protestant church in Ireland, and to the present state of Protestant property; this oath has been universally taken, and by this oath, both parties are concluded, the Catholics from resorting to the abjured doctrines, and the Protestant from resorting to the abjured charge; therefore, when the member imputes, as he has done, to the Catholic, the principles hereby abjured, it is not the Catholic who breaks faith with him, but it is he who breaks faith with the Catholic. He acts in violation of the instrument he himself formed, and is put down by his own authority; but the Catholics have not only thus obtained a special acquittal from the charges made against them in this debate, they have obtained a general acquittal also.
The most powerful of their opponents, the late Earl of Clare, writes as follows: “ They who adhere to the church of Rome are good Catholics, they who adhere to the court of Rome are traitors;" and he quotes Lord Somers as his authority, in which he entirely acquiesces, and acknowJedges their innocence in their adherence to the church of Rome as distinct from the court; a test, such as I have already mentioned, is formed in Ireland, abjuring the doctrine of the court of Rome, and reducing their religion to the church of Rome. This test, together with a number of other other articles, is reduced to an oath, and this oath is introduced into an act of parliament, and this oath, thus legalised, is taken universally; bere again are the opponents to the Catholic, concluded by their own concessions; by tendering an oath to Catholics, they allow an oath to be a test of sincerity; by framing that oath under these circumstances, they make it a test of pure Catholicism; and by their own argument, they pronounce pure Catholicism to be innoxious; but the honourable member has gone a little farther than pronounce the innocence of the Catholics; he has pronounced the mischievous consequences of the laws that proscribe them;